There’s been a dearth of female-driven action movies the past couple of years. With the exception of 2007’s Resident Evil: Extinction, and 2008’s Doomsday (which gets my award for the “so bad it’s completely awesome” film of last year) - and maybe even Wanted (Angelina Jolie wasn’t the actual lead in the film, even though it seemed that way) - female action movie stars seem to have gone MIA. In 2009, women will join a number of action movie ensemble casts, but it looks we might only see a leading superheroine in Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun-Li. In this cinematic climate, a new Tomb Raider movie is most welcome.
On the other hand, it’s a new Tomb Raider movie. Lara Croft is a notsomuch the feminist dream of an action movie heroine. She’s an impossibly shaped character designed to make gameboys drool on themselves while they play. After all, this is a video game that became famous for a fan-created “nude patch” that enabled gamers to play a naked version of Lara Croft (“Nude Raider,” natch). This is such a frustrating problem: we’ll need Tomb Raider to be a big giant blockbuster because box office success is the only way to prove that women can carry action movies. But we probably don’t need another big screen Lara Croft.
I don’t mean any offense to feminist Tomb Raider fans here. I’ve played and
enjoyed several of the Tomb Raider games and I even didn’t mind the big dumb spectacles that were the first two Tomb
Raider movies. But I’m still not thrilled that we may have to bank on Lara Croft to try and prove (again) the credibility of action heroines.
What do you think about a new Tomb Raider movie?