Just when you thought things were going to die down in terms of reboots…wait, who am I kidding. If anything reboot was a long time coming. Not to trash on Angelina Jolie since she was the Lara Croft everyone wanted at the time, but the movies weren’t that great. At some point even the video game had to end, and unfortunately it just seemed to continue on into the movies where Lara Croft was allowed to spew her one-liners and show why she’s so inherently tough. In many ways she was the epitome of the new age woman since she was hardened, intelligent, and independent to a fault. But Alicia Vikander is bringing a new depth to Lara Croft that we didn’t see too often with Jolie.
This time around Lara is working as a bike courier in England and refusing to take up the reins of her father’s business. She’s determined to make her own way in life and do what she wants. That sounds like Lara Croft alright, from the movie and from the game. But when Vikander’s version finally gets it through her head to go searching for her missing father she is left with little more than her wits and the inherent toughness that she possesses to make her way forward, relying on her inborn talents to pave the way as she seeks out any trace of her missing sire.
Vikander, unlike Jolie, delivers the role of Lara Croft from a much more human standpoint. She’s not invincible, she’s not unbreakable, and she’s certainly not unshakable. Jolie’s Lara was something of a superwoman in that she just didn’t break, ever. Even if she had her tender and more sensitive moments she was still like ice through and through in a matter of seconds once she had to be. Vikander is going to be bringing a new level to Lara Croft that makes her far more human and less like a virtual avatar waiting for her emotions to be uploaded. Jolie might be a good actor but Vikander has youth and the distinct advantage of knowing that she doesn’t have to compete with Jolie’s performance to make the character great.
Really, does anyone even remember that Jolie made any Tomb Raider movies? I’m sure they do but how often do they get any play anymore? They were a one and done deal, meaning they came out on the screen and then they were done. If anyone ever really watches them with anything other than a look of mild amusement on their faces I’d be surprised. Vikander however has a chance to do something far different. Instead of already being the Lara Croft that so many young men have fantasized over on the video game, she will be earning her reputation as she seeks out her father. As she adventures forth she will be tested again and again until she reaches her breaking point, and then it will be seen what she’s really made of.
It’s a new beginning for Lara Croft, are you ready for it?