Lara Croft: Tomb Raider (2001):

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This film is a 2001 action-adventure film that was based on the Tomb Raider video game series character Lara Croft. It was directed by Simon West, stars Angelina Jolie, and revolves around Lara Croft (Jolie) trying to obtain ancient artifacts from the enemy, the Illuminati.  While the plot and editing may seem silly,  the rest of the film is still enjoyable. Being a movie based on a video game, it can be hard to develop a cohesive plot that is engaging or worth watching for about two hours. What makes this film better than most video game movies is Jolie as Croft. She is an absolute delight to see on screen and plays the smart and fierce character with enthusiasm. She kicks butt and looks great doing it. She is able to bridge the gap between comedy and action in a decent way that makes the film enjoyable to watch. She's comparable to Harrison Ford's Indiana Jones from a character standpoint. Her While Jolie makes the film enjoyable, the plot is fairly predictable and the film tells its audience what it needs to know. For example, the connection between Lara and her father seems forced as the audience is not given any background to their relationship before he died. Their relationship feels real, especially with Jolie's actual dad (Jon Voight) playing him but there is no development of their characters. Also, Daniel Craig's American accent is pretty bad.  It is not a good movie by any means, however, Jolie makes the film a fun ride and worth buying on Blu-ray to enjoy a fun adventure film with no strings attached. 

Rating: 2.0/5.0 bowties

Lara Croft: Tomb Raider - The Cradle of Life (2003):

This is an action-adventure film that is the sequel to Lara Croft: Tomb Raider directed by Jan de Bont again based on the Tomb Raider video game series and stars Angelina Jolie as the titular Lara Croft. Lara races to get control of Pandora's Box, a mystic item that once brought life to Earth but was closed before it could also release a plague that would everyone. She needs to get it before Jonathan Reiss (Ciarán Hinds) does.  Once again, Jolie brings her charm and class to Lara. This is a more developed Tomb Raider than in the past film. She has friends in high places everywhere ready to help her as necessary. She's no longer attached to her father, she's her own person. She even has a past romance come back to haunt her as Terry Sheridan (Gerard Butler). While a film that is just as entertaining as the first film, it doesn't add much to franchise aside from the fact that its another adventure for Croft. There's not much to the film otherwise and Butler has very little chemistry with Jolie which unfortunately makes their plot feel unreal. However, it's not enough to make the film unenjoyable even though the film is pretty bad. It's still the fun ride that the first one was. 

Rating: 2.0/5.0 bowties

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