Thursday, 22 March 2018

"Tomb Raider" - A Review of The 2018 Movie - An Unintentional Turkey for Easter...

"A Turkey At Easter"

Tomb Raider 2018 – A Review

God help us all but sexiness is out and politically correct drudge is in.

Alicia Vikander is one of the most exquisite looking women on the planet and a fantastic actress more than capable of greatness and sincerity with a single look. But her soulless reboot of "Lara Croft" sucks for so many reasons it beggar’s belief.

It's clichéd now to use the word derivative when it comes to storyline - but that's what this dull and lifeless Indiana Jones wannabe is. Many crimes are committed here - first is that in the movie's desperate need to get bums on seats the trailer gives you every sequence worth looking at in two minutes flat - so when you do sit down - you've already seen the best bits. But the worst crime of all is that one of the sexiest characters ever put on screen comes over here as one of the dullest imaginable. This Lara Croft whines, she whinges, she mopes, she loses every time and has all the confidence and backbone of Hilary Clinton at a post election no-show - shafting her supporters when they needed her the most - especially those who believed in her. In an effort to make this LC more human – the makers of this turkey have sucked all the life out of her.

And let’s be blunt about this – where’s the sex? If you take Alicia in the vastly underrated "The Man From U.N.C.L.E." - she was an object of desire with the right guy - Armie Hammer - there was a palatable chemistry between them that made the movie work. Here the man she wants is absent Dad - played very well it has to be said by Dominic West (although some have called him performance hammy). Their relationship was probably the best thing about the film (some genuinely touching scenes) - but there's little else.

Formulaic I know but poor Alicia doesn't even have a decent man to go after or spar with emotionally (she has a sidekick in drunken boatman Daniel Wu - but nothing ever ignites or feels right about their bond). Walton Goggins is a very effective bad guy with his mad eyes and sweaty brow and his trapped-on-an-island for seven years frazzled brain. But again he spends much of the movie looking up in awe at something in the jungle or in the tomb and when the camera cuts over to it - you're wondering what's impressing this dude so much because haven't we seen all of this hieroglyphs and revolving death traps crap before - and done better.

Once on Yamati Island off the coast of Japan and in order to get to the prize a shady foundation called Trinity wants - Alicia must of course face the trails of Empress Himiko (a close relative of General Biscuit Mikado). One is the Chamber of Lost Souls (you hang left at The Cauldron Of Inappropriate Flatulence) and another is the Sarcophagus of Death (round the corner from The Underpants of Bad Personal Hygiene). And on it goes...and on...and on...

Then there's the stuff that just jars - the set pieces you don't want to see - a pointless bicycle race in London with a tin of paint - the painful pawn shop sketch that thinks its funny but isn't - the tedious board room scenes (will she or won't she sign) with actors like Derek Jacobi and Kristen Scott Thomas laughing all the way to the bank for phone-in performances that must have taken all of four minutes to rehearse - the big reveal at the end that turns out to be none at all.

But the real problem is surely casting. Alicia rocks nine times out of ten - check out her staggering chemistry with Michael Fassbender and Armie Hammer in "The Light Between Oceans" and "The Man From U.N.C.L.E." But Angelina Jolie oozed it back in the day. She had that look in her eye - that vivaciousness - that inherent belief in her own sexiness that made the silly movie such fun to watch. She was Lara Croft and everyone knew it. I'd pay 50p for a DVD of "Tomb Raider" with Jolie in it because at least a re-watch would be worth it. This Lara Croft has all the va-va-voom of a used teeshirt on the floor of a gym and somehow that's just unforgivable to me. It's almost as if sexiness in this new Lara Croft is somehow a dirty word - replaced by po-faced sterility. If this is new-girl empowerment then it didn’t come off as such. 

I felt robbed of two hours watching this "Tomb Raider" remake, forgot about it the moment I left the cinema and even (as you've no doubt worked out) felt a little angry at the laziness of it all (the same emotions washed over me at the trailer to "Jurassic Park: Fallen Kingdom" - more lazy-assed drivel with zero story originality). What a waste of everyone's time and ultimately...what a huge let down...

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