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Vikander is a beautifully effective avatar for the American Ninja Warrior version of Lara Croft. Stripping down the bombast of the original games (and films) allows Uthaug’s reboot to feel comparatively grounded and immediate, without dragging itself down with unnecessary pathos.
Vikander doesn’t do much with a character whose chief attribute is earnestness, but Tomb Raider improves once it gets to the island and lets the derring-do take over.
When Tomb Raider digs into its more creative action, it’s about as entertaining as popcorn entertainment gets these days. It’s when the film falls back on the old tropes that things grind to a halt.
Since the genre of video games-turned-into-feature films has inflicted some real doozies on audiences, Tomb Raider towers above most of its peers by being merely OK. By any other measure, this is a saga of fits and starts, and we can only hope for smoother sailing if the film inspires the sequels it clearly hopes to engender.
Tomb Raider fails to develop interesting characters or motives but at least offers viewers some fun action.
Lara’s appealing enough in humor and drive but Vikander brings deeper notes than the script and green screens require, from sorrow and fear to first-kill horror. Tomb Raider isn’t a place to expect good acting even from an Oscar winner, but Vikander persists.
Throughout Vikander maintains a kind of serene evenness of manner. Blandness is Lara’s theme.
To her credit, Vikander works hard and looks the part. She also has some chemistry with Daniel Wu, who plays the guy who helps Lara get to the island and then sort of becomes her sidekick.... By the standards of video game movies, Tomb Raider is not terrible, but by the standards of video game movies Plan 9 From Outer Space is practically an Oscar winner.
When your set pieces fail to surprise, your dialogue fails to deliver even one decent one-liner and your villain looks like he’s dealing with dysentery on location, maybe 17-18 years isn’t long enough between reboots.
Slant Magazine
This isn’t an adaptation of a video game so much as an adaptation of a video game’s tutorial level.

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