Alicia Vikander's "Tomb Raider" Isn't Better Or Worse But Different
I watched the new Tomb Raider hoping for some positive changes from the original two Angelina Jolie films. This film delivered on some and left some things needing improvements.
I kinnnnnd of liked Alicia Vikander better. Sorry, Ms. Jolie. I love you. In this role, not so much. You're Jane Bond and Lara Croft is about a young girl coming into her own with fear. Angelina Jolie is too wise, sexy, perfect, and worldly to have ever done a convincing Lara Croft. Imagine someone like Hugh Jackman playing Napoleon Dynamite.
Alicia is believable as a young girl who doesn't know what to do. She doesn't want to take over her inheritance. Money is the root of all evil to her. She's a punk rebel tomboy running around London without a care in the world. Something about Miss Vikander is so youthful and almost teenager-like. She is pretty but not like, "WHOAAAAA, I am so afraid of her. She could pummel me." She's like your regular girl who discovers she has so much to offer the world, and the casting was perfect here.
As far as the movie goes, it's fun up to a point. Once she's on the island, everything really slows down. What I liked about the first Tomb Raiders was the changing locale. The fast pace. Action. Cheeseball, fine, "dat action though." I loved every moment of it. Streaming this, I wanted less of the 2000's cheesy filmmaking style retaining that motion in the story. The new Tomb Raider sets up Alicia Vikander as this new great Lara and leaves us wanting more about halfway. We don't get to see Lara doing her stuff. She starts as this really aggressive and cool girl. Halfway, it's like the producers and everyone on set rushed the actors. You can see that in their performances. Palpable. Oh yeah. Alicia walking over the endless pit on a ladder doesn't look believable. The expression on her face and lack of acting when the whole movie prior to it had outstanding acting from her reads like, "I've been awake for 22 hours. The studio people are bugging me to finish this in one take. Here we go. I'm about to throw up. The assistant director won't leave me alone." Nobody walks over this bottomless hole like, "Hey, I can't wait to find that new movie on Netflix when I cross over." You freak out.
Someone rushed the second half of this movie so badly. With all of the actors, the special FX, the action, the everything. This movie looks like budgeting was awesome and, oops, the CGI team and action boys now need to hurry up. We're running behind schedule. You go from the coolest movie to something that could have been any meh action movie from the 90's to early 2000's in the second half. There is so much to the story you could have done or explored and did not.
I would have liked seeing the bad guy wreak havoc on the world and Lara solving the problem with new friends. It ends kind of abruptly and the only thing I liked at the end was seeing the new setup that here's confident Lara, she needs her weapons now, she's ready to kick ass out there on her next adventure, go Lara!
I would have liked seeing the London rebel friends of hers from the start of the film head off with her onto her adventures.
We don't see any of the improvements from the first go around. We get pretty much the same thing at a slower, more boring pace with some worse acting in the second half.
We don't see a lot of that. We get this promising movie and feel left out by much of it. You should watch it if you are bored, but don't expect much from it after you're excited.