Jan de Bont is a Dutch-born 60-year-old who at one time was most famous because he escaped being scalped by a lion whilst filming Roar in 1981. Until he made his directorial debut in 1994 with Speed, De Bont was a cinematographer and shot some 47 films including the likes of Basic Instinct, Flatliners and The Hunt For Red October. Since he won Razzie awards for Speed 2 and The Haunting, some would suggest perhaps he should have stuck with cinematography. Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle Of Life is his fifth film, as apart from the films already mentioned, he also directed Twister. De Bont has tried to build a reputation as an action man but many regard him as the auteur of the awful.
This is the second outing for Lara Croft, star of the iconic video game and personified on the big screen by Angelina Jolie who apparently is known as lips on legs in some circles. This time round Lara looks less computer-generated (no more pointy breasts but accentuated nipples still) and there’s action galore as she jumps around the globe from Greece to Kazakhstan, Tanzania, Kenya, Hong Kong and China, this time in search of the elusive Pandora’s box. The whole thing is ludicrous but that is the point -“ it is a computer game after all where anything is possible so why not camp it up and have Lara save the world? Men claim to do it in virtually every other film coming out of Hollywood these days.
Sure the script is dull and there are no sparks between AJ and the Scottish sex-object-as-offsider, Gerard Butler, but the action is full on and the stunts unending. This isn’t a great film but it is still great entertainment and you could have worse eye candy than Angelina and those nipples.