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Roar Uthaug
Alicia Vikander, Dominic West, Walton Goggins
Writing Credits:
Geneva Robertson-Dworet, Alastair Siddons

Adventurer Lara Croft must push herself beyond her limits when she discovers the island where her father disappeared.

Box Office:
$94 million.
Opening Weekend
$23,633,317 on 3854 screens.
Domestic Gross

Rated PG-13

Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1
English Dolby Atmos
English DTS-HD MA 5.1
English Descriptive Audio
Latin Spanish Dolby 5.1
French Dolby 5.1
Portuguese Dolby 5.1
Latin Spanish
Supplements Subtitles:
Latin Spanish

Runtime: 118 min.
Price: $35.99
Release Date: 6/12/2018

• “Evolution of an Icon” Featurette
• “Croft Training” Featurette
• “Uncovered” Featurette
• “Breaking Down the Rapids” Featurette
• Previews


-LG OLED65C6P 65-Inch 4K Ultra HD Smart OLED TV
-Marantz SR7010 9.2 Channel Full 4K Ultra HD AV Surround Receiver
-Panasonic DMP-BD60K Blu-Ray Player
-Chane A2.4 Speakers
-SVS SB12-NSD 12" 400-watt Sealed Box Subwoofer


Tomb Raider [Blu-Ray] (2018)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (June 10, 2018)

Every time I review a movie based on a video game, I note that in the US, 2001’s Lara Croft: Tomb Raider remains the box office champ. Would 2018’s series reboot Tomb Raider alter that status?

Nope. Though it did fairly well overseas, Tomb Raider fizzled in the US, where its $57 million gross wasn’t even half of what the 2001 movie made. That non-US take might be enough to prompt a sequel, but the returns must disappoint the studio, as I’m sure they expected much more from the reboot.

Adventurer Richard Croft (Dominic West) disappeared when his daughter Lara was 15 and lands in the “presumed dead” file. Now 21 (Alicia Vikander), she leads a fairly aimless life and lacks much purpose. She also finds herself broke, as she refuses to accept her massive inheritance.

That’s because Lara believes her father’s still alive, and she decides to try to solve the mystery. This leads her on an action-packed mission fraught with peril.

Norwegian director Roar Uthaug got noticed via the relative success of his 2015 disaster movie The Wave. I didn’t get the appeal, as I thought it offered a generic affair, but that film seems to be the reason he got his shot at the “big time” with Tomb Raider.

Unfortunately, Raider does nothing to alter my estimation of Uthaug’s talents. Thoroughly, relentlessly mediocre, the film fails to become anything especially compelling.

Not that Uthaug doesn’t work overtime to deliver the goods, as he throws out plenty of action. However, Raider comes with an odd balance in that regard, as it drops in these beats at awkward times.

Raider opens with Lara in an MMA bout, and she soon goes on a bike race that sends her on a mad dash through London. These sequences feel gratuitous, like Uthaug wants to stun us with action right out of the gate.

The movie might work better if it used these early moments for character development, as it takes a while for the film to really motivate Lara to a great degree. The early action seems a little desperate, like Uthaug fears the viewer will abandon ship if it doesn’t rock and sock from the get-go.

After this, we find many more action scenes, but the pacing of these sequences feels off. The movie goes down long dull stretches before stabs at thrills pop up, and they often come out of nowhere.

In truth, little about the development of the narrative feels natural, and the script rarely threatens to turn into anything engaging. Raider comes with a fairly simple story that it complicates in needless ways, and it never adds enough charge to make us care what happens along the way.

Raider walks a fine line in that it wants a more “reality-based” experience than the 2001 film but it still tries to keep us thrilled. It doesn’t quite work, as the movie can’t figure out how to connect the franchise’s “female Indiana Jones” theme with its take on matters.

Because of this, the movie fails to deliver a particularly satisfying sense of adventure. It feels less like a grand action experience and more like the meanderings of a young woman with daddy issues.

Though the original Croft films didn’t soar, I did like Angelina Jolie’s take on the character, as she offered a fine mix of tough, skilled, sexy and intelligent. While I think Vikander boasts a lot of talent, she feels ill-cast as Lara and never comes across as especially convincing.

Granted, Raider provides something of an “origin story” for the role, so it makes sense that Vikander’s Lara lacks the self-assurance and skill of Jolie’s. Still, I think Vikander feels too tentative, and she lacks the qualities necessary to flesh out the character.

Perhaps she’ll develop as the years progress and I’ll change my mind, but right now, I simply think Vikander lacks the “Action Star Gene” that Jolie and Charlize Theron possess. Though she doesn’t flop in the role, Vikander can’t bring the presence Lara needs to become a convincing adventure character.

Probably the biggest sin I find here comes from a general lack of purpose or narrative movement, though. The basic “tomb raiding” aspect of the plot doesn’t boast much to entice the viewer and the film’s stabs at action don’t compensate.

None of these factors make Tomb Raider a bad movie, but it can’t find its way to elevate above the level of general mediocrity. Maybe we’ll get a strong re-reboot of the franchise in 2035, but the 2018 movie lacks much energy or excitement.

The Disc Grades: Picture A-/ Audio A-/ Bonus C-

Tomb Raider appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 2.40:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. This became a strong presentation.

Sharpness worked fine, with virtually no softness on display. This meant the vast majority of the film was accurate and well-defined.

I saw no signs of jaggies or moiré effects, and the film lacked edge haloes or print flaws.

If you suspected Raider would come with the modern standard teal and orange palette, you’ll get what you expected. I’d like to see action flicks dispense with those conceits, but given their restraints, they looked appropriate here.

Blacks came across nicely, as dark tones were deep and rich, without any muddiness or problems. In addition, low-light shots gave us smooth, clear visuals. All in all, this became a pleasing presentation.

I also felt happy with the solid Dolby Atmos soundtrack of Raider. Downconverted to Dolby TrueHD 7.1, the mix offered plenty of opportunities for lively auditory information, and it took good advantage of these.

From the opening MMA scene to road chases to gunfire to explosions to other action elements, the mix filled the speakers on a frequent basis. The track placed information in logical spots and blended all the channels in a smooth, compelling manner.

Audio quality was also positive. Music sounded lively and full, while effects delivered accurate material. Those elements showed nice clarity and kick, with tight low-end.

Speech was always distinctive and concise, too. This mix worked well for the film.

Four featurettes appear, and these start with Uncovered. It goes for seven minutes, six seconds and includes comments from director Roar Uthaug, producers Patrick McCormick and Graham King, stunt coordinator Franklin Henson, production designer Gary Freeman, and actors Alicia Vikander, Daniel Wu, Walton Goggins, and Dominic West.

“Uncovered” examines story and characters, cast and performances, Uthaug’s take on the material, action/stunts and sets/locations. The show offers a few decent tidbits but it’s mainly superficial.

With the six-minute, six-second Croft Training, we hear from Vikander, Uthaug, McCormick, Henson, West, King, and personal trainer Magnus Lygdback. As implied, this one examines the preparation Vikander did for the part. It mainly praises her for her dedication.

Breaking Down the Rapids fills five minutes, 34 seconds with info from Uthaug, Vikander, Henson, Lee Valley Water Centre Safety Advisor Laura Cooper and special effects supervisor Max Poolman. “Rapids” looks at the various elements required for one particular action scene. Though it comes with some of the usual praise, it gives us more substance than the prior featurettes.

Finally, Evolution of an Icon runs nine minutes, 53 seconds and delivers notes from Vikander, Wu, Uthaug, West, video game specialist Erika Ishii and Crystal Dynamics Senior Community Manager Meagan Marie. “Icon” digs into the history of the games and their connection to the movie. We find a fairly nice view of the franchise.

The disc opens with ads for Tag and The MEG. No trailer for Raider appears here.

A reboot of a moderately successful franchise, 2018’s Tomb Raider never turns into an especially engaging adventure. Burdened with a flat plot and a general lack of real excitement, the movie feels wholly mediocre. The Blu-ray offers excellent picture and audio as well as minor supplements. I hoped Tomb Raider would kickstart the Lara Croft series but it ends up as pretty forgettable

Viewer Film Ratings: 3.4444 Stars Number of Votes: 9
1 3:
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