Will Alicia Vikander make a better Lara Croft than Angelina Jolie?

Published: September 26, 2017
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There was a point in my life when I desperately wanted to be an archaeologist. While I was young and impressionable, the primary reason for one of my earliest choices of profession was the influence of the bullwhip cracking, pop culture icon, Indiana Jones.

I doubt that most millennials are aware of the impact this fedora-wearing protagonist had on our generation. If they need a reference, they need not look further than the gun-toting archaeologist-adventurer, Lara Croft.

Hailing from the same occupational territory, Croft is to the millennial what Jones was to our generation. The first trailer of the Tomb Raider reboot, featuring a double pistol holding Alicia Vikander, dropped a couple of days back. I bet memories from their childhood must have come rushing back.

Photo: Screenshot

The Swedish actress is the second one to take on the role of the eponymous Croft, after Angelina Jolie brought the videogame character to the silver screen in 2001.

The film is set to release in 2018 and is apparently based on the critically acclaimed, 2013 videogame of the same name. The premise supposedly deals with how our female protagonist, following her father’s untimely death, decides to leave behind her life as a broke college student to seek adventure in a tomb called the Mother of Death, just off the coast of Japan.

Photo: Screenshot

However, our braid-rocking female lead is not the only one looking for this mythical crypt, there is also a mysterious evil organisation called trinity in search for it. Who is going to reach the fabled tomb first? This is the question that drives the narrative forward in this story of Croft’s origins.

Photo: Screenshot

During the trailer, we get to experience the Oscar-winner Vikander, also starred in The Danish Girl and Ex Machina, storming through a forest, leaping from a collapsing airplane wing and staring down a devastating sea storm. I, for one, found the action-adventure teaser to be pretty riveting.

Photo: IMDb

Additionally, for fans of the 2013 game, the good news is that everything from Vikander’s choice of outfit to the couple of action pieces during the movie promo, are based on the popular video game.

Photo: IMDb

As for the downside, Hollywood has a long running history of reboots and videogame adaptations faring poorly at the box office, and Tomb Raider is both. Jokes falling completely flat in the trailer also do not help its cause. Any fan of the action-adventure genre would have no hesitation in telling you how important a healthy dose of humour is for these kinds of movies.

Directed by Norwegian filmmaker Roar Uthaug (The Wave), Vikander stars alongside Daniel Wu, Dominic West (The Wire) and Walton Goggins (The Hateful Eight) in the first Lara Croft adaptation, following the 2003 Tomb Raider sequel, Cradle of Life.

Despite the fact that Croft is a pioneer for the first franchise to counter stereotypical female characters in this industry, its past movie adaptations have failed to break barriers. Will the Vikander starrer be the one to buck the trend?

Guess we will find out when Tomb Raider hits the screens on March 16, 2018.

Hassan Sardar

Hassan Sardar

The author is an aspiring filmmaker and a diehard Liverpool fan. He also teaches Screenwriting and Cinematography, and loves tattoos and flip-flops. He tweets as @CineSardar (twitter.com/CineSardar)

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.