Tomb Raider (2018) Review
As a fan of the Tomb Raider video games, I was hoping this would finally break the video game movie curse. Did it?
Searching for her evidently dead father, Lara Croft ventures on a journey to find him. The trail leads her to a deadly island where she faces off against the harsh environments and meets unexpected findings.
I honestly believe this is the first video game movie that is good in value. The set pieces, effects, acting and a serviceable plot really surprise me to see the 49% score on Rotten Tomatoes. To me, it’s another lack of an understanding between the critics and the audience. Let’s start from the strongest assets. Alicia Vikander as Lara Croft is the best part, a great choice to portray the character. She got ripped for the role, she didn’t try to be a strong independent woman by behaving like a man instead, a really kick-ass gal. The character overall is very likable and not overly confident.
The story wasn’t anything special, but I do appreciate it being based on the 2013 video game reboot which is more of an origin story than anything else. Sadly, the story in the video game was better, providing more layers, mythos, and lore to the island itself which would have worked to its advantage here. A truly missed opportunity, but not all of it. Not even most of it. There are also parts I like to call ‘stunt scenes’, where the characters are on the brink of death if they don’t find a form of escape. The director (Roar Uthaug) really put you in the moment especially the plane segment.
Going deep into negatives, a lot of action sequences felt at times too choreographed. I know this is a movie, but sometimes it looked like the characters purposefully fell or made a mistake. The editing was visible during those. When going from one cut to another there was a lack of consistency in the actions performed. The main adversary was what I call ‘your typical Marvel movie villain of the week’. One dimensional antagonist who is just there to stand in the character’s way. Finally, the ending trying to tie everything into a neat little bow took me out because it felt so cheesy and cliche.
Tomb Raider suffers from minor bumps in the road which are outmatched by the positives. The great leading performance and the smile-inducing or at times even tense action sequences really make it one heck of a time in a movie theatre. Really hoping a sequel is on its way.
An honest review. No point of exaggerating the minor flaws.