Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life
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Index 312 reviews in total 

A Temple To Athena

3/10
Author: jldmp1 (jldmp1@aol.com) from United States
7 July 2006

The attempt here is to deify Jolie as the goddess of technology, war and 'craft' through movie iconography. Plainly, the passage is through the Indiana Jones series, and several of the James Bond installments, including "Dr. No", "Goldfinger", "Moonraker", "A View to a Kill", and "Tomorrow Never Dies". Note her partnering here with a 'rogue Scot'. "Mission Impossible 2" and "Point Break" are thrown in for good measure.

This falls flat because of the deadly dull seriousness, and the absence of any sex appeal. It amounts to a spoof in all of its manifold allusive features, yet it generates no laughs. Jolie needed to play this with a wink at the audience, but got it completely wrong.

The other missing dimension is the lack of acknowledgment that this is, at its root, a game. There's no interaction with us, no engineering of narrative to engage us within this in some way.

We get a boring procession of visual platitudes, nothing more.

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laughed a lot

6/10
Author: Ange
18 March 2005

This movie was very funny to me - it was so unbelievable, I just laughed the whole time. I actually rented this movie because of Gerard Butler - and enjoyed seeing him act through almost the entire movie (unlike most of the other movies that he is in). Butler did a good job in is role as Terry Sheridan, and was good as the tough guy/bad boy. Angelina Jolie wasn't too great though - actually, I didn't think that her acting was bad, just her character was hilarious to me even though I'm not sure that it was supposed to be! If ya'll are in the mood for some good laughs (mostly AT the movie, not because of it), I would recommend Lara Croft: Tomb Raider. I give this movie a 6 out of 10.

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Usual action sequel fodder

Author: Phil Millward (manilla-73) from Manchester, England
4 October 2004

A fan of the games... Yes (until Angel of Darkness).

A fan of the first movie in the series... Yes (it was OK).

A fan of this movie............. Not really.

Something was missing from the film. It was in the main a re-hash of the original movie but then again aren't most James Bond movies. So that cannot be held against it.

It didn't give any intriguing back story, similar to lots of action sequels. Again that is not the fault of the movie but of the viewing public that want to pay to see more of the same, just bigger and brasher than before.

What was missing was something to hold the interest. While the action sequences were progressing I have to say I was watching and enjoying the movie. The rest of the time however I was just passing time until the next fight.

I wasn't grabbed by the film and hope beyond hope, that if they do another movie they try to do something fresh and refreshing with it.

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This film is treading Thin Ground

5/10
Author: John_Warwick (johnpaulwarwick@yahoo.co.uk) from North East England
23 August 2004

OK so I could just about stand the first film Lara Croft Tomb Raider, Although that film was so far fetched and ridiculous that even fans of 007 would find it un-realistic but it seems that this sequel goes even further to the realm of unrealism it portrays scene so unbelievable that a two year old child would be stroking their chin. See the way "Lara" escapes from the underwater city for proof of this.

The Story as such isn't really so bad, it seems to me to be a case of good idea poor execution and some OTT scenes don't help at all. Otherwise I found this film to be a reasonable action film maybe the middle of the film is a little dull but the opening and esp. the closing scenes are done to provide a reasonable amount of interest and if your a fan of either Angelina or Tomb Raider you will most likely enjoy if not love this film probably worth renting but don't pay large amounts of cash to own this one though.

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Not so Tomb Raider.

Author: ilikethrillkill from California
20 August 2004

The first movie was called Tomb Raider. It starred Lara Croft. That was a Tomb Raider movie. This one is called Tomb Raider as well, but it's not a Tomb Raider movie. It's a generic action movie starring Lara Croft. The first director put enough emphasis on the game elements to the point where they're noticeable by fans, but not distracting from the movie. He did a great job of bringing a realistic Lara Croft to reality. In this movie, even Lara is changed, and the plot, locations, fights, and lover, have 0 to do with the original franchise. Plot: Follow Lara along the world as she tries stopping a madman from getting Pandora's Box. This, in essence, looks good on paper as a Tomb Raider plot. Too bad the director forgot he's making a Tomb Raider movie after the first underwater fight. Fights: There was only one good John Woo 2 gun scene. Not too much gun play in this one Locations: Other than the first and last place Lara was in, these environments didn't feel very Tomb Raiderish at all. Buildings? No thanks, this is Tomb Raider, not Jane Bond. Ugh, she even had a little eye gadget. Lover: What? Lara flies solo. Another mistake made by the director. In conclusion, director should have stayed away from the Tomb Raider franchise and made his own generic action movie. This isn't Tomb Raider at all, sorry. The saving grace of this movie, is, again, Angelina Jolie. There isn't a better Lara Croft out there, she is absolutely perfect for the part. My ratings, as a Tomb Raider movie, 3 out of 10. As a generic action movie, 6 out of 10. You're not missing anything here folks. My DVD rating, 7/10. The commentary is....annoying at best, and the extras are small and uneventful. At least we learned that Angelina had fun making the movie, because I didn't have much fun watching it.

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The cradle won't rock..

Author: gorguruga from London
26 June 2004

Cradle of Life was a major let-down and the second half seemed very rushed apart from some of the cgi scenes. So many things in this movie were just cumbersome and generic, there were no real fresh ideas.

The acting was very poor in parts and only Angelina Jolie could be considered as having good acting in the film. The other actors were occasionaly very rigid as if they were reading the lines right off the script. There are some scenes with the male sidekick that I thought were so badly acted they would have been better off as comedy out-takes.

Overall the word "cradle" is paramount because this film will probably be more appreciated by kids. For a more mature audience, I'm afraid the cradle won't rock.

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Entertaining enough, but a bit silly.....

6/10
Author: Rob Taylor (Rob_Taylor) from London
22 June 2004

It's a trend amongst screenwriters, I think, to write up ever more ridiculous scenes for their movies now that CGI effects can deliver the visuals. LCTRCoL isn't bad when compared to the likes of Charlie's Angels Full Throttle but it still has it's "stupider than stupid" moments.

The most memorable of these is when Croft (Jolie) punches a shark to frighten it off. This, I don't have a problem with. But when the shark, after being punched, shakes it's head as if groggy, I do. I know I shouldn't take these sorts of things too seriously, but it's just this sort of imbecility that gets on my nerves and ruins my enjoyment of a film. Sadly, I suspect we'll be seeing a lot more of this kind of idiocy in movies in years to come.

The film as a whole isn't that bad. It's entertaining enough in a "brain off" kind of way, but it seemed to be lacking something that the original had. No, I don't mean John Voight. Somewhere along the way, this sequel seems to have become a cheap rip-off of itself. If you changed the actors and altered the title to something like "Laura Soft: Grave Robber - The Anthill of Strife" you'd have some idea of what I'm getting at. It's like someone made a clone of Tomb Raider, but then found they had actually used the same actors from the original without knowing. It's like one of those Star Wars rip-offs from the 70's or 80's. At least, that's how it seems to me.

Now, as I said, it is a harmless way to spend an hour or two and, the odd scene apart, there isn't too much to offend the intellect. But it's all just so "samey" that it's a relief when it's finally finished.

Not bad, but not that good either.

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Plenty of Meaningless Action

6/10
Author: Alan Deikman (Alan-40) from Fremont, CA
28 February 2004

Proof yet again that video games don't make good movies. The plot -- such as it is -- is designed to stretch out one hugely visible stunt after another with no depth of feeling whatsoever. As with any video game, the wounds and scars that result from any action disappear by the time the next stunt starts.

Angelina Jolie does her best to present a tough.aloof bitch with a softer side, but it is never developed enough to make it interesting. (At least they deflated the padding a bit for this one.) Croft always seems to have access to some resourceful, local, long-time-friend who just happens to have been polishing her weaponry and transportation right up to the minute she happens to show up in the remote location where they live.

A little bit of James Bond, a little bit of Indiana Jones, a rip-off here or there -- so what. The fact is that for some of us it is no fun to see Alexander's ancient temple full of artifacts destroyed within minutes of its discovery. You would think that a dedicated archaeologist like Lady Croft would have one line of regret over that but instead you get the same reaction that the Bush administration had over the destruction of the Baghdad museum. (Just a bunch of old clay pots.) Things like that undermine any identification with the Croft character that you otherwise might have.

Even the sets themselves don't seem to care very much. The temple in the opening sequence, in spite of being under the sea for thousands of years, has plenty of breathable air and is slightly cleaner than the modern Hong Kong shopping mall that appears later. Nothing seems to have very much value.

If you like big-budget stunts and action, this is your movie.

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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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Average. If there's another, I'll be surprised.

Author: Phil Watts (philwatts@mac.com) from UK
14 February 2004

I hadn't seen the first Tomb Raider movie before watching this, so I was a bit concerned that maybe this one wouldn't make sense without seeing the prequel. As it happens, this movie seems completely independent of its predecessor, although it does help to know who Lara Croft is.

The pace of the movie was good - everything moved along at an understandable speed, it wasn't confusing and you realised who everybody was. Chris Barrie was completely wasted in this - he's highly regarded as a comedic actor in the UK and this was almost a cameo role for an actor who deserves so much more. Jolie filled her part well and you always had the impression she was in control. It didn't matter whether you'd seen the previous movie or even played the video games.

I don't think the plot was strong enough though. The orb they were trying to retrieve could easily have been a person or a member of royalty. It's a very tired genre. The beginning of the movie consists of an item or person being misplaced and the rest of the movie is spent trying to retrieve said item or person. This is what a lot of computer games are made of.

This is why I don't think there will be another movie. The computer games have lost their popularity because the genre keeps repeating (it's basically the same character in different situations). Saying that, it's fashionable to produce trilogies these days, so there may well be a third instalment for the sake of it.

The effects were impressive and the stunts were spectacular. However, if they're not backed up by a convincing storyline, they're worthless.

The Lara Croft films won't be remembered as the Indiana Jones films have been. They certainly won't be classics in years to come. I think it's a shame though, but hopefully it will be a lesson to the industry not to start a franchise from computer games.

I won't be intrigued by a third movie, although it probably helps if your a pubescent fourteen year old teenager who's played the Tomb Raider games. This isn't a movie I'll be recommending, and I'd advise Angelina to consider more worthwhile and unforgettable scripts in future.

I'd give it a 5/10 if I was pushed.

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