*½/**** Image A+ Sound A+ Extras A
starring Angelina Jolie, Gerard Butler, Ciaran Hinds, Djimon Hounsou
screenplay by Dean Georgaris
directed by Jan De Bont
by Walter Chaw The weirdest thing about the pretty weird Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life (hereafter Tomb Raider 2) is that the filmmakers either haven't seen Raiders of the Lost Ark or, more likely, hope that no one in the target audience has. With Angelina Jolie and her costume-enhanced bod serving as the distaff version of Harrison Ford's grizzled globetrotting heartthrob, the doubling becomes fascinating when looked at through the prism of Hollywood's (and society's, if you want to go there) hots for professorial old men and sexy young women. Consider, after all, that Indy gets eyes made at him while providing exposition in a dusty classroom (fully clothed), while Lara Croft delivers vital plot information in a rubber bikini; the dichotomy between brains and bust is pretty striking, even as the faux ancient frieze featuring the Ark of the Covenant/Pandora's Box appears to be identical, along with the dire consequences of opening the respective crates.