Film Review: Tomb Raider

On 14 March 2018, the highly anticipated new Lara Croft film was released to cinemas in the UK. This film has been on the cards for years, and as time went by, the interest in a new Tomb Raider slowly fell as more details were revealed about it. We tried not to jump on the bandwagon and decided to keep our thoughts on the details about the film to a minimum, allowing us to focus on the film itself when we sat down in those very comfortable cinema seats.

Now, Tomb Raider is one of those series that are nostalgic for many of us. We all have watched the two films with Angelina Jolie acting as Lara Croft. We’ve all played those video games whether they’re the newer ones or the older ones. We’ve all experienced Tomb Raider in one shape or form, so it was about time they brought this iconic game to the big screen once again.

Throughout the announcements of this film, we were all wondering what a Lara Croft film would look like without Angelina Jolie;, surely this couldn’t be a thing. Regardless, they managed to pull it off spectacularly and it certainly met our expectations, not that we really had many to begin with.

Our main character is Lara Croft, played by Alicia Vikander (The Danish GirlJason BourneEx Machina), a daughter whose father, Lord Richard Croft played by Dominic West (The WireThe AffairChicago300), went on an adventure to which he never returned from. She believes he left her, whereas everyone else presumes he’s dead. Before she signs the documents that will give her the business and the estate, she is given a Japanese puzzle box known as a Karakuri which gives her a clue. Using this clue, she finds out her dad is an explorer. He tells her in a video message to burn everything relating to Himiko.

This was the last project her father worked on, and instead, she dives right on in and goes on a search to find her father and information on Himiko. Along the way she makes friends with Lu Ren, played by Daniel Wu (Into The BadlandsWarcraft: The Beginning), who owns a ship called Endurance, which they take into the Devil’s Sea towards the island of Yamatai, the island where Himiko is buried. She was the Queen of Yamatai who had power over who lived and who died.

The ship gets caught in a storm and Lara Croft and Lu Ren get captured by the Trinity, an organisation that her father warned her of. in the video; the reason her father wanted her to destroy all the evidence he had found on Himiko. Now, that evidence is in the enemy’s hands. The leader is Mattias Vogel, played by Walton Goggins (SIXJustifiedPredatorsThe Shield), who tells Lara Croft that he murdered her father and also thanked her for all the information to find Himiko and set the Queen free.

The story continues but we don’t want to reveal any spoilers; there are enough official clips that have been released from this film that pretty much reveals a little too much for our liking. Regardless, the cinema screen was moderately vacated, and we were engrossed in the movie from start to finish.

We did find a few things we didn’t like. Our past memories of Lara Croft was the difficult puzzles that had to be worked out, whether that was in the films, the games, or the movies. These ones came off easy, with the clues being so obvious, it hurt. Every single clue felt like a step-by-step guide that any child could solve; and, although the puzzles themselves felt risque and intellectual, it also felt simple at the same time. Not only that but the traps throughout felt repetitive, with little to no imagination.

What we do applaud the film for is the gorgeous setting and location. Although, getting from A to B location-wise also seemed way too easy for our main character; to the extent where it felt that the director, who was Roar Uthaug, wanted them to get to Yamatai as soon as possible.

As for the acting, it was superb. Alicia Vikander does not disappoint as Lara Croft, and we hope that if there is a sequel – to which the ending suggests that there might be – then she will be Lara Croft again. She totally embodied the character and fully nailed who we know Lara Croft to be. The rest of the acting cast did an amazing job, with Walton Goggins playing the enemy incredibly. He has this desperate yet sinister air about him.

We can’t help but love this film. It brought back nostalgic memories, and an incredible urge to solve puzzles. What it lacked in pace and puzzle content, it made up in story-telling and acting ability. Not to mention the high-quality locations that just looked stunning at times – that plane scene was outstanding.

Watch The Full Trailers For The Recently Released Tomb Raider Film Here:

The film was produced by Graham King. It also stars Kristin Scott Thomas, Emily Carey, Nick Frost, Derek Jacobi, Jaime Winstone, Josef Atlin, amongst others. The screenplay was written by Geneva Robertson-Dworet & Alastair Siddons, whilst the former and Evan Daugherty came up with the story.

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Written by Jonathan Currinn

29-year-old writer, blogger, author, and journalist. Graduated from Staffordshire University in 2015. I write under the name Critic Jonni, on my blog. I also write for Fuzzable. In the past, I have written for the Daily Star, Channillo, Outlet Magazine, SPECTRUMM, Fox & Squirrel Photography, Modern Magazine, and Electric Mode. Follow me on all socials under the handle: @CriticJonni. Email me at jonathancurrinn@gmail.com also, if you want, you can buy me a virtual coffee: https://ko-fi.com/jonathancurrinn