Tomb Raider (2018) - C-
This is a very frustrating movie. They get some much right but totally screw enough up that the movie never rises above average. The acting is solid, after a silly start there is decent enough action, and everything looks well made.
The problem is the screenplay and the pointless junk that is crammed in or taken out for no good reason. It's clear this movie is somewhat based off the rebooted Tomb Raider game that came out in 2013. The movie is at it's best when it takes from that game. The shipwreck, the island, Laura being fairly green are all well done. Unfortunately the studio/screenwriter/director (always hard to know who is fully to blame) seemed to have little faith in that game's story, chopped it up, removed all elements of the supernatural, and then straight up stole the basic ending to Uncharted.
It opens with Laura strangely refusing to take her inheritance because she refuses to believe her father is dead. Instead of being loaded she is living as a squatter on some rooftop while earning money as a bike courier. This dumb as hell and makes no sense. If she is so sure her dad is alive wouldn't it make more sense to oh... I dunno, take that money and use it to search for him? They make a big deal out of how clever she is but this seems like about the dumbest course of action a person could take in her situation.
The opening "action sequence" of her racing her bike around as a "fox" to win a bet is stupid as ****. Like holy shit who came up with such an idiotic way to to show how great Laura is? Did they have excess footage from Premium Rush lying around or something? Since when does Laura roll around on a bike pulling of EXTREME TRICKS like she's a character out of Mat Hoffman's Pro BMX?
All of this needless junk that has never been in Tomb Raider takes something like 30 minutes to get through. Why anyone thought this was how you reboot an action franchise that should be essentially a modern take on Indiana Jones I have no idea. Anyway, when she finally decides to take the money she gets a puzzle box that she solves in all of 5 seconds after she picks it up. Considering the way the movie ends with the secret villain this again makes no sense. The bad guys don't really need Laura. They just need her dad's work. Are you really wanting me to believe none of them could solve the damn thing after 10 years?
Either way, this FINALLY gets her started on her adventure as she thinks she can find her father with the research he left her. Though she
apparently never saw The Last Crusade I'm sure the people making this movie did b/c she brings along the very thing she was meant to hide.
So she goes to China, doesn't think to hire an interpreter and just goes to some docks to find a specific boat. How she thinks she can do this without knowing any Chinese is beyond me but through movie magic the one boat with it's name in English on the side happens to be what she is looking for.
Finally we are going to the island this game is based off of!
So obviously her ship wrecks and she gets stranded on the island (this is where the game starts). People are looking for some shit and.... what the **** ever.... dudes want some mystical dead witch, Laura doesn't want to help but is forced to help, her dad is alive (why?) but then gets killed (lol) and blah blah blah blah the enemy is stopped.
The entire build up to a magical witch is a red herring and in a bullshit move that was likely meant to save money on special effects they lift the ending from Uncharted where the a body is carrying a ****ed up virus that drives you nuts.
Laura wins, her company is partly run by the bad guys, and oh, she only gets her trademark guns in a mid credits scene.
I really wanted to like this movie but it takes forever to get going and once it gets to where it needs to be instead of following a solid story that was already laid out they instead decided to rip off a game inspired by Tomb Raider in Uncharted.
I can see why it didn't do all that great. They give the middle finger to the built in video game fanbase by taking from other games, people who only know the Angelina Jolie movies will probably think it takes itself way too seriously, it takes too damn long to get going, and for as smart as they tell us Laura is she is kind of an idiot.
Sadly all this movie will do is keep up the perception that VGs cant make a great movie when in reality the problem is the fools that are making them.