Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life
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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

Good as entertainment

8/10
Author: Lyceus from Madrid, Spain
21 September 2006

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This is a good action and adventures movie. It's really unrealistic, but who cares? Most stunts wouldn't be in the movie if it wasn't a video-game adaptation, but it doesn't matter - and they make the movie more enjoyable! Angelina Jolie is a great Lara Croft. She's a mix between Indiana Jones and Xena, and she reminds me of the TV heroine Sydney Fox in "Relic Hunter" (Sydney is obviously inspired in Tomb Raider's Lara). The other actors are OK, I don't really got impressed but I doubt the movie pretended that. The plot is in fact quite interesting, although not original at all (the evil guy wants to earn millions of dollars by selling a powerful biological weapon which is kept in Pandora's box). The places Lara visits (Greece, China, Africa...) are beautiful and are good choices (I love when she rides in her motorbike on the Great Chinese Wall). The end was good, I didn't think Lara would kill his mate in order to keep the world safe from Pandora's box.

To sum up, a very good movie if you just want entertainment.

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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

Borring

4/10
Author: Spanner-2 from United States
5 August 2003

This sequel again finds Angelina Jolie as the female Indiana Jones, jutting around the world... this time in search of Pandora's Box of all things.. While I wasn't a big fan of the original, it had some impressive stunt sequences and production design... this one on the other hand just doesn't work for me.. A collosal bore of a film that almost put me to sleep, Jolie sleepwalks through the film, displaying not one iota of genuine human emotion, and the supporting cast of lunkheads is just worthless.. The opening sequence has some good action, but from there it degenerates into tired and badly staged sequences that do little to involve the viewer. Hopefully the series will not continue. GRADE: D-

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5 out of 8 people found the following review useful:

It's too bad that MST3K isn't being made anymore

2/10
Author: w00f from The Flaming Wreckage
25 July 2003

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Possible spoilers ahead.

I didn't see the first Tomb Raider movie, so I can't compare the second one to it. All I can say is that there was nothing good about this film in and of itself. Seriously, nothing.

To begin with, the direction is awful. OK, Angelina Jolie is a very pretty woman. Still, is it necessary that 1/2 of the movie be nothing but a close-up of her? Combined with another 1/4 of the movie being close-ups of Russell Crowe look-alike Gerard Butler, and there's already a big problem. This is not what great action movies are made of. Especially considering that Jolie appears to have only one facial expression throughout most of the film.

The character of Lara Croft was badly written. She's intensely dislikeable. I never felt any sympathy for this character at all. Perhaps Jolie's wooden acting contributed to this. "Acting" is a term I use loosely here, since it doesn't appear that the script called upon her to do any of it.

The movie also lacks entirely in originality. Much of it seemed lifted from "Raiders of the Lost Ark." Swap Africa for the Middle East and the 1930's for the present day and you've pretty much got the same film. It's entirely predictable, from start to finish. What didn't come from "Raiders" came from "The Mummy."

When you meet character Terry Sheridan in his prison cell, there's no problem figuring out how the movie will end. None at all. Yawn.

A few technical notes that make this a good candidate if there's ever a revival of Mystery Science Theater 3000:

1. The "most remote mountainous region in China" is not 35 miles outside of Shanghai. That's like saying that the suburbs of Washington DC are the most remote part of Virginia.

2. For a villain who we're told "has no agenda," Reiss sure seems to have a lot to say about his agenda.

3. You cannot slide down a rope headfirst from a mountain with your bare hands and not get rope burn.

4. There is more than one shark in the Meditteranean, despite this movie insisting something to the contrary. Punching a shark in the nose does not mean it will let you ride it, and it definitely doesn't mean it will head straight for the surface. Kids, don't try this at home.

All in all, this film is a complete waste of time, unless you're really dying to see Angelina Jolie in a wet suit... and that scene, a few minutes into "Cradle of Life," is as good as this one gets.

I laughed out loud at several points in "Cradle of Life;" not because the film meant to be funny, but because it was laugh-out-loud bad. Many of the people in the theater laughed along with me.

If you plan to miss just one movie this summer, make it this one!

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6 out of 10 people found the following review useful:

Gerry ::Tear::

9/10
Author: (writetoact@aol.com) from United States
4 October 2005

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Personally I have to admit that I loved the movie. It is definitely better then the first and I love the Tomb Raider series. I play the games and I think that they capture the true essence of Lara Croft on screen. Angelina Jolie does an amazing job as Lara Croft and I don't think that they could ever choose anyone besides her. Gerard Butler also does an amazing job. It was the first film I ever saw him in and I was instantly in love with the way he was acting. I don't usually cry in films but for some reason his are the ones that actually get me too. When Terry dies my eyes were welling up with disappointment(not in Gerry's acting). I give two thumbs up to Gerard's acting and only wish that I could let everyone know how wonderful an actor he is in this movie and all of his others. Bravo!

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6 out of 10 people found the following review useful:

Great action packed film!

10/10
Author: Movie Nuttball from U.S.A.
15 March 2004

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Minor Spoilers.

Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life is a great movie! Its arguably better than the first one! Angelina Jolie is great in it and it is so amazing that she does her own stunts! I think she is perfect for this role and that she is a fine actress! Gerard Butler was also good! His character is neat and his build and accent makes it cool! I thought he and Jolie worked very good together through out the film! He is a very good actor! I also thought that Ciarán Hinds and Djimon Hounsou performed good too! Good special effects. The film has an incredible amount of action! The part where Reiss and his men have Croft prisoner was believe it or not on the scary side! Great suspense! The Shadow Guardians were awesome! That scene where the monsters attack rulez! The music is by one of the greatest composers in My opinion and one of My favorites Alan Silvestri! Very good theme! This is My favorite of the two Tomb Raider films! I really like these and I hope that they will make at least one more and that Angelina Jolie plays Lara once more because she was born for this great role in My opinion! Excellent film! Strongly recommended!

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8 out of 14 people found the following review useful:

A girl who does her own stunts

10/10
Author: Angelique McCall from United States of America
22 September 2003

What more could you ask for of a female actress? This is truly the 21st century and women superheroes are real not fantasy. This Lara Croft character is put on by a dynamic performance by Angelina Jolie. She truly knows the meaning of live performance. Angelina is truly remarkable in this flick and the last Tomb Raider movie. Anyone who says different has too much time on their hands and would rather think about things that are of no relevance. Life is too short not to like this film. Have a good one!

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9 out of 16 people found the following review useful:

Nice to see a woman in lead action role!

9/10
Author: nhover from United States
1 August 2005

If you're a die hard Indiana Jones fan, or any of those movies that take you all over the world on a great treasure hunt, you will LOVE Tomb Raider! Both movies show a new side to Angelina Jolie, a smart, skilled, self- reliant woman who can kick butt! So the characters don't have 10 dimensions, what person looking to watch a true action flick really CARES if the main character had a rough childhood or not? Not hat it is JUST like those other adventure movies either, yes there native tribesman, booby traps, and lots of bad guys who show up at just the right time, but the places this movie takes you are unique and extremely exotic! Plus when was the last time you saw a movie about Pandora's box, or where the FEMALE lead saves the day? So grab your popcorn and get ready to go for an adventurous ride with Lara Croft, Tomb Raider!

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10 out of 18 people found the following review useful:

I enjoyed it for what it was, but not as good as the first.

7/10
Author: Aaron1375
29 July 2003

This movie was all right, kept me entertained for the most part, but it needed more and less. The story is a bit better this time in parts, but it is also worse in others. I was kind of hoping I would hate this movie as most critics and people seem to, but I enjoyed it so now I suppose I will get private messages from people saying I should hate the movie. Well don't bother writing me please. The movie starts out with a cool underwater temple scene, and this is the highlight of the movie. It is also the only part in the movie that feels like the tomb raider video game. The rest of the movie has some good stuff, but it doesn't feel like tomb raider, more like a spy movie or something. At one point there is a scene with monsters that look like they belong in the Lord of the Ring movies. For what it was worth it was ok, but these monsters were kind of out of place. At least the stone warriors from the first movie have actually appeared in the game. I would also love to see Lara go into an actual tomb for once. Sure the underwater temple was cool, but it was just one room. Like the first one all the tombs here are usually one room. Can't they have here go through a really long tomb with multiple traps and stuff for her to shoot at? Also, I wish she would have used her guns more. I shoot more in five minutes of the video game than she does in this entire movie, and she always loses her weapons too. Not that I don't want to see character development and stuff, but this is a movie based on a game, it should be a bit more action packed than what we get. All in all though it was okay, I enjoyed it, but it just wasn't as good as the first for me.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

I don't feel this one

Author: Pihlaja from Helsinki
23 December 2013

I'm torn about this film. On the other hand, I cannot quite pinpoint the differences between this and the original Lara Croft film, and yet it feels inferior in every aspect. But why is that? Why do I feel that this isn't as good as the original. Well, novelty might be one explanation. The first Tomb Raider was fresh, new, something we hadn't seen before. This one is just the first one with a new coat of paint, which is never a good thing.

One explanation might also be that I don't really like Gerard Butler's Terry Sheridan as a character. The first Tomb Raider was great because the focus was on Lara. She was the undisputed hero of her own story. In this one I feel that they regretted that decision and decided to add some unneeded masculinity into the mix. And yes, this is hypocritical, because if any sequel to a male lead adventure film decided to add a kickass female character, I wouldn't complain at all. Unfortunately, that's the world we live in, and I cannot lie about how I feel about Terry.

I also miss the interplay between Lara and her father. The first film was very focused on her character and the stages were personal. Not so much in this film. Lara quests for the Cradle of Life, not because it means something to her personally, but because she's ordered to do so and she just went: "Yeah, I didn't have anything planned for the weekend anyway." A workable solution if you don't have anything else, but it's a bit on the weak side.

Otherwise the movie is pretty much identical to the first one. Gorgeous locations, great stunt sequences, imaginative action scenes and Angelina Jolie is as great as always, although the need to cover her up in order to cover her tattoos is a crime against humanity. So, if you liked the first one, I'd give this one a watch as well. It's not quite as good, but it's not noticeably worse either. If you didn't like it, this won't change your opinion.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Leave this "Cradle of Life" for Dead

4/10
Author: AgentSmith136
27 February 2004

Forget about saving the world and just save yourself from seeing the non-spectacle that is "Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life." I am willing to suspend my disbelief during action films of this silly caliber and go with the ride, if the film gives me a reason to. However, there are no appealing characters, no groundbreaking special effects, no intriguing concepts, and no involving action sequences contained within the film's two-hour running time. I was left almost utterly bored, passing the time by counting off the clichés that kept popping up. This is as uninspired and bland as I've ever seen a supposed blockbuster be.

Upon its release, many were hoping that "The Cradle of Life" would improve upon the first "Tomb Raider" film, but actually it represents a step down for the franchise. This time out, Lara Croft (Angelina Jolie), the closest thing Indiana Jones will ever have to a daughter, has to stop a crazed scientist, Johnathan Reiss (Ciarán Hinds) from finding Pandora's Box, as it will destroy the world if opened. Those audience members who are up on their Greek mythology will know that Pandora's Box was an artifact containing a plague capable of destroying humanity that was buried beneath the sea by Alexander the Great. What is the moral here? As Lara herself says, `Some things were not meant to be found.' Ah, if only we were all so wise.

I'm not exactly sure who will benefit from viewing "Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life." The film looks splashy enough, but this is still mediocrity, albeit mediocrity served on a silver platter. Hardcore action fans won't find anything new here, particularly fans of "Raiders of the Lost Ark," and the like. The males in the audience won't find much in the way of cleavage from Ms. Jolie, as she has even abandoned wearing any of the bra padding that the first film so prominently featured, and females can find better representations of girl power in "Charlie's Angels." (What that says about the times we are in, I'm not quite sure.) The thing that has always seemed funny to me is the fact that making it through a "Tomb Raider" video-game takes a fair amount of brain cells, due to the many puzzles and such that they contain, but watching either of the two films spawned from them takes almost none. My advice is to leave this "Cradle of Life" for dead.

Brent's Final Analysis: ** out of ****

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