All you need to do to tell Alicia Vikander can not only act but has star power is watch her as the dramatic yet humorous secret agent in 2015’s The Man from U.N.C.L.E.  Or you could watch her portray a reality without a soul as a borg in 2014’s critically acclaimed sci-fi film Ex Machina.  Or how about her Oscar-winning performance awarded last year for her work in The Danish Girl?  She’s in theaters right now opposite Christoph Waltz in Tulip Fever and it seems more than fitting that the critically acclaimed dramatic actress is stepping into what could be a lucrative, major action hero role for her, taking over for Angelina Jolie in the reboot of Tomb Raider.  

This week started with the first official look at Vikander as video game franchise character Lara Croft in the first teaser poster for the film.  With the first trailer for the movie now available it’s clear that Norwegian film director Roar Uthaug (Escape, The Wave) and writer Geneva Robertson-Dworet (ROM, M.A.S.K., Sherlock Holmes 3, Captain Marvel, Dungeons & Dragons, Gotham City Sirens) are returning to the core of the character designed and created by Toby Gard to become one of the world’s best-selling franchises.  Gard said he left the company he created Lara Croft for because he was opposed to the idea and marketing of Lara’s sex appeal, with ever-increasing breast size in the game sequels after he left.  The sex appeal is still there but the film in the first trailer looks to be all about the adventure, exploring environments, solving riddles, and navigating traps with villains on her tail.  Clips from the trailer mirror some of the same kind of cliffhanger scenes found in each of the original trilogy of Indiana Jones movies–the same kind of adventure that made the original video game a success.  If you have any doubts that Vikander looks the part, just check out the comparison video after the clip below, which shows just how closely Vikander matches the Lara in the video game Rise of the Tomb Raider.

Lara Croft has been around since 1996, in various versions of game play, based on at least eight different real-life models, and even voiced by the likes of Ashes to Ashes star Keeley Hawes and Good Will Hunting and The Riches star Minnie Driver.  The new film co-stars Walton Goggins, who always plays that half-cocked villain you are pleased to see get crushed under the hero’s toes, popping up in films like Predators, Cowboys and Aliens, Django Unchained, G.I. Joe: Retaliation, and The Hateful Eight.  A big surprise–one of our favorite genre actors, Nick Frost (Attack the Block, Doctor Who, Shaun of the Dead, The World’s End), is in the film, plus Hannah-John Kamen (Killjoys, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Ready Player One, Ant-Man and the Wasp), Dominic West (The Hour, John Carter, The Wire), and Kristin Scott Thomas (Mission: Impossible, The Golden Compass, The English Patient).

So check out the first trailer for Tomb Raider:

And here is the quick comparison done by IGN:

This new Tomb Raider has some great genre “street cred” behind the scenes, including Superman (1978) editor Stuart Baird (Skyfall, Casino Royale, Gorillas in the Mist, Ladyhawke, Outland, Demolition Man, Lethal Weapon), cinematographer George Richmond (the Kingsman series, Quantum of Solace, The Golden Compass, Snow White and the Huntsman), noted action-adventure production designer Gary Freeman (Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides), Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time, Clash of the Titans, National Treasure: Book of Secrets, Aeon Flux, Children of Men, 47 Ronin), costumes designers Colleen Atwood (Edward Scissorhands, Gattaca, Sleepy Hollow, Planet of the Apes, Alice in Wonderland, Snow White and the Huntsman, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, CW’s Arrow) and Timothy A. Wonsik (The Avengers, Ant-Man, Guardians of the Galaxy, Indiana Jones and the Crystal Skull, G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra), and composer Tom Holkenborg aka Junkie XL (Mad Max: Fury Road, Deadpool).

Look for Tomb Raider in theaters March 15, 2018, two weeks before it goes head-to-head with that other video game flick, Steven Spielberg’s Ready Player One.

C.J. Bunce
Editor
borg.com

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