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Vikander reprises Lara Croft role in 'Tomb Raider' remake

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By Shirrel Rhoades
Columnist

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Move aside Angelina Jolie, there’s a new Tomb Raider. Alicia Vikander (“Ex Machina,” “The Danish Girl”) takes over the role of Lara Croft in the reboot of this action-adventure series based on a video game whose developmental roots go back to 1993.

Angelina Jolie gave us two feature films (2001 and 2003), a leggy heroine dressed in cutoff shorts, a turquoise singlet, and calf-high boots. Now Alicia Vikander dons the boots and picks up the hunter’s bow.

But first, we get the refined backstory: Lara’s father, Lord Richard Croft (Dominic West), has disappeared. A prominent archeologist, he leaves a secret message for his reckless daughter, telling her about his research into the mythical Queen Himiko of Yamatai. The queen of this lost island kingdom was said to have had a mysterious “power over death.”

Needless to say, Lara sets out on her father’s trail, first flying to Hong Kong and from there traveling by ship to an island thought to have been the legendary Yamatai. In her quest Lara must overcome many life-threatening obstacles (after all, this is an action-adventure film) — including threats by a rival archaeologist (Walton Goggins) and a shadowy organization known as Trinity.

The cast includes Kristin Scott Thomas, Derek Jacobi, Daniel Wu and Nick Frost. The film was helmed by Norwegian director Roar Uthaug (“The Wave”).

Academy Award-winner Alicia Vikander says, “I thought it was wonderful that I could play a young woman who’s still trying to find her footing in the world, who also has a story with her dad that has been lost for seven years, but she hasn’t really been able to mourn him either, because she never knew what happened.”

The slender 22-year-old actress continues, “Physically it was something completely different. I had never taken on a character and a role in a film like this. … Would you buy that this young girl can beat this bigger, stronger man? We then, story wise, integrated that she’s a physical being, and she trains in MMA, she’s a bicycle courier, so I wanted her to be a strong girl, and for it to be plausible that she could do what she does later on in the film. … I started (training) about four months before we started the shoot.”

When an interviewer posed the question, “If Lara Croft, Indiana Jones, and Nathan Drake all went looking for the same artifact, who would get there first?”

“Lara, Come on,” she laughs.

srhoades@aol.com

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