The video game adventurer comes to life again in this action packed reboot that proves to have a slight edge over its original version.
Lara Croft is a young woman whose father has been missing for seven years. Due to take over her father’s company, she feels she is not quite ready yet and works as a bike courier. She also engages in bike chase games with her fellow couriers. However, she still is convinced that her father may still be alive as there have no reports of his death in any manner. Upon claiming her inheritance, Lara discovers that her father was on a mission to investigate a legendary queen who was said to command life and death. Watching the tape and warned to destroy the research, Lara has other plans.
To embark to the mysterious island of Yamatai, Lara hires Lu Ren, the son of the ship captain who traveled with Lara’s father. It if there where she meets Mathias Vogel, who leads an expedition team to study Himiko at the behest of Trinity, a shadowy company who seek out to harness and use Himiko’s power for their own gain. Vogel claims to have killed Lara’s father and forces Lara and Lu Ren as part of the “team”. However, Lara makes a shocking discovery that will change her destiny forever as she intends to stop Vogel and Trinity from gaining Himiko’s power.
Lara Croft is one of the top video game figures of the era, beginning with her first adventure in 1996. In 2001, Angelina Jolie would take on the role in Lara Croft: Tomb Raider which did well enough for a 2003 sequel, The Cradle of Life. However, after more games and changes in terms of Lara’s look later on, it was determined that it was time to reboot the game into film.
In the role of Lara Croft this time around is Oscar winner Alicia Vikander. So how does she fare? She actually brings her own interpretation of Lara as a young woman who becomes a bit naïve and reckless as she gets into a ring where she does mixed martial arts as well as enter a bike race that leads to her arrest. Vikander pulls it off quite well as a young Lara Croft on her very first adventure and it is clear when it comes to the action scenes, they are true homage to the video game series and Vikander is able to somehow pull off the action quite well.
Joining Croft on this adventure is the concerned Lu Ren, played by Into the Badlands’ lead star, Daniel Wu. A veteran for 20 years, Wu has the chops and action skills necessary to play Lu, who becomes Croft’s reliable ally as both a captain and someone good with a gun when needed. As for Walton Goggins, he tends to play villains with such charm and does it again in the role of Vogel. Vogel is a master manipulator and crazed gun-for-hire who seeks to harness and weaponize a deadly power for a more evil organization, Trinity.
As mentioned, director Roar Uthaug brings the video game to life with its action scenes. With some of the action allowing Croft to make incredible jumps in the vein of the games, she is able to unleash more hand-to-hand combat in the form of some MMA and kickboxing. It is clear that from her opening fight in the ring that we’re going to see Lara put those skills to good use towards the finale and it works quite well. Should a sequel come, it will be great to see Vikander return to the role of Lara Croft.
Tomb Raider is actually not a bad adaptation of the video games. While Alicia Vikander is no Angelina Jolie, she does have a bit of an edge in terms of unleashing Lara’s moves on the screen.
WFG RATING: B
Metro Goldwyn Mayer and Warner Bros. presents a GK Pictures in association with Square Enix. Director: Roar Uthaug. Producer: Graham King. Writers: Geneva Robertson-Dworet, Alastair Siddons, and Evan Daugherty. Cinematography: George Richmond. Editing: Stuart Baird, Tom Harrison-Read, and Michael Tronick.
Cast: Alicia Vikander, Walton Goggins, Daniel Wu, Dominic West, Kristin Scott Thomas, Derek Jacobi, Alexandre Willaume, Tamer Burjaq, Adrian Collins, Kennan Arrison, Andrian Mazive.