Tomb Raider: Movie Review

"Tomb Raider" is too much entombed with the video game remake it is heavily-based on and with this, the film finds middling success in translating the essence of that game onto the big screen. Ironically, the film shines when it decides to go beyond its source material but those are few and far between. What we get is an all flash no substance film that was disappointing as it was entertaining.

Lara Croft (Alicia Vikander) is the fiercely independent daughter of an eccentric adventurer who vanished seven years ago when she was barely a young adult. Now at 21 years old and struggling to make ends meet, Lara must sign an agreement that her father is now dead - a fact that she doesn't want to accept ever since he went missing. This will not only give her boundless assets but will also prevent her father's estate from being sold by the government. But when she discovers a message left by her father just for her, Lara goes in search of his last-known destination: a fabled tomb on a mythical island called Yamatai that houses a queen that was rumored to have been cursed with a deadly power.
There's always been a notion that video games and movies never mix well and that still rang true with "Tomb Raider". The biggest problem with the film was that it obviously tried to please two distinct audiences with distinct expectations. You just cannot be a jack-of-all-trades and expect to be outstanding for all. For gamer fans, you'll feel that the film lacked substance in terms of what made the 2013 video game remake of the same name great while as a film-goer, "Tomb Raider" just alienates you with vague references to key elements from the game that abruptly stops the flow on the big screen. The narrative itself was surprisingly solid with the film focusing more on believability and realism over the mysticism of previous games and films. In cases that the writers decide to stray farther away from its source material, the more we found ourselves enjoying the experience. But don't get us wrong, this was still the film's weakest point. It had huge flaws in terms of its flow, humongous loopholes and mind-benders. On the acting department, Alicia Vikander as Lara Croft was simply perfect and probably the one main reason why the film turned out to be enjoyable. Vikander translated well as a younger, less mature Lara. Her action sequences were good and choreography for the fight scenes were punchy. Watch out for the last half were things get pretty intense. To end our review, if you just judge "Tomb Raider" as a film without its roots, it would just turn out to be plain average. It was acceptable but there's nothing special to make you want more.
Rating: 3 reels

Why you should watch it:
- Alicia Vikander is perfect as the new Lara Croft
- the second half was intense

Why you shouldn't watch it:
- the narrative was a mess
- tries to please gamers and filmgoers at the same time

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