Tomb Raider – Film Review

Rating : 3 / 5 stars

What’s it about?

Tomb Raider is the cinematic adaptation of a videogame by the same name and is directed by Roar Uthaug, starring Alicia Vikander, Dominic West, Walter Goggins, Daniel Wu and Kristian Scott Thomas.

The film follows Lara Croft as she goes on her first adventure: to find her missing father and save the world. Believed to be dead for almost a decade, Lara finds new information regarding the whereabouts of  her missing dad and embarks on a quest to track him down. But this is easier said than done, as she must match wits and battle a shady organization who wants her fathers research for their own nefarious goals.

How does she manages to do this? Watch the film to find out.

What’s Good?

This is essentially Lara Croft’s origin story, and the makers give her a lot of character depth that is effective in making the viewer empathize with her and root for her during the course of the film. The film has some great action set pieces which have been shot very well. There is a sense of adventure that permeates throughout the film and this works in its favor. Also, the pacing is breakneck, and this does not allow you to dwell too much on any plot holes the film might have. This makes it a decent popcorn adventure flick for someone who just wants to be entertained and not challenged intellectually. Finally, the film has a lean screenplay, without any unwanted subplots that may have effected the flow of the film.

What’s Not?

Since a substantial chunk of this film happens in dark tombs and caves, the 3D makes it look dark and dirty and difficult to discern the visual fabric of the film. So if possible, this film should be watched in 2D. The story does not have any layers to it and is fairly straightforward, which is not a bad thing generally, except here one feels that a lot more could have been done in terms of, say, exploring the lore of the quest they are on. Also, there is not much character development for anyone else other than Lara and her dad. A little more exploration and character building with regards to the main villain and Daniel Wu’s character would have helped the film. Also, the film could have done more to invest the viewer in solving all the puzzles that Lara has to solve in order to succeed in her quest. And if you are not a video game player, be prepared to get major Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade vibes during the climax. VFX is mediocre in certain places and could be improved.

Performances

Alicia Vikander makes for a very different and unique Lara Croft. She brings a lot more depth to the character and makes her more believable. She is also great in the action scenes and carries the film squarely on her petite shoulders. Dominic West as Richard Croft is good and brings a lot of humanity to what could have very well been a one dimensional role. Walter Goggins is average as the main villain Vogel, as we have seen him do much better in other films. Daniel Wu does not have much to do and his character gets sidelined towards the middle part of the film and the viewer forgets about him until the climax. Kristin Scott Thomas has two scenes in the film which she could have done in her sleep. Rest of the cast are decent in their respective roles.

Final Word

From a non video game player’s point of view, this is a perfectly enjoyable popcorn adventure film. Definitely a one time watch!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s