Lara Croft: Tomb Raider – The Cradle of Life

England’s pointiest boobs since Alan Sugar are back in 2003 sequel Lara Croft: Tomb Raider – The Cradle of Filth.

“Fuck this movie, I’m going bowling.”

Angelina Jolie and her poorly disguised stunt double return to raid Alexander the Great’s temple (Jolie played Alexander‘s mother so it’s technically hers anyway) and discover a MacGuffin in the shape of an orb, which a bio-terrorist (Ciarán Hinds) plans to use to open Pandora’s box and unleash unspeakable awful on the entire audience.

Slashing the budget of its predecessor and bringing in Speed‘s Jan de Bont to direct (for the final time in his career), Tomb Raider 2 swaps the techno music and giant robots for a dismal Bond ripoff that peaks early when Croft punches and rides a shark. It alternates between pointless action and perfunctory exposition, with none of the post-Matrix fun that made the first film so tolerable.

The Crotch of Life.

Jolie (still doing her best Bridget Jones impression) is charismatic in a video game character type of way and it’s nice to see the Bond formula gender-swapped, with her partner (Gerard Butler) whining about his feelings as she rolls her eyes (though their sex scene ought to be locked away in a tomb forever). But the game adaptation is rendered objectionable by action movie racism and poor production values (even the ones that usually go unnoticed like lighting and props), the only discernible direction being whichever way Croft’s nipples are pointing.

This aimless, apathetic sequel sets a low bar for the new Tomb Raider 2, though that didn’t stop Tomb Raider (2018) from sliding under it like Indiana Jones forgetting his hat and how to make a Tomb Raider film.

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