Movie Review: The Lost City of Z (2017)

Exploration can lead to many things. From the discovery of lost civilizations to a crazy Italian man killing natives around the Caribbean in the name of Spain. So yeah, it has both upsides and downsides.

Disclaimer: I know this thing is based on a true story, but I will not base my review on how perfectly accurate to the real situation it may or may not be, but I will instead judge it as a movie… which it is. Disclaimer over.

Ladies and gentlemen… “The Lost City of Z”.

Percival Fawcett (Charlie Hunnam) is a former military man who has decided to embark on a quest to the Amazonian jungles to try to find a lost city that he calls Z. And quickly this expedition turns into an obsession that puts a strain on his family life and his reputation. So now we have our story… and it’ a good one. It’s not a fast-paced and fun adventure like “Indiana Jones”, but more of a slowly burning exploration of a determined man’s journey. And I think that’s quite refreshing, seeing as most jungle/treasure hunts in movies/TV/games these days tend to be fast action things. Though I will admit that the pacing feels a bit too meander-y at a couple points, bordering on getting boring. But for the most part it’s an interesting and dramatic plot that mostly kept my interest.

The characters here are quite interesting and for the most part got a good amount of development. Charlie Hunnam (aside from being a handsome man) plays Percy Fawcett, our protagonist and obsessed explorer. Seeing his exploring turn from something he gets to simply do to an obsession is fascinating and it makes him quite a layered character. And Hunnam is really good in the role, this is probably his best performance since “Sons of Anarchy”. Robert Pattinson plays Henry Costin, Fawcett’s assistant during this exploration. He can seem like doesn’t exactly want to be there, but he does learn to appreciate the journey, and he’s just overall fairly entertaining. And Pattinson is great in the role. Sienna Miller plays Nina, Fawcett’s wife. And we get to see her as she goes through her husband’s obsession and her development in hte plot is fairly emotional. And Miller is great in the role. Then we have Ian McDiarmid (that’s right, Emperor Palpatine is in the house!) as one of the men funding and encouraging Fawcett’s expedition. And McDiarmid is really good in the role. Then we have some really solid supporting performance throughout from Angus Macfadyen, Edward Ashley, Tom Holland, Clive Francis, and more.

The score for the movie was composed by Christopher Spelman, and it was great. What we have is an emotional, sweeping, tense, inspiring, and just overall great score that fits the movie very well and often elevated scenes throughout.

This movie was written and directed by James Gray and I think he did a great job. His direction is very confident and sweeping, feeling very old school in that way. It also brings out a decent sense of tension whenever it needs to, making you feat for the characters’ well-being. And I have to talk about Darius Khondji’s cinematography… because it’s fucking gorgeous. Lighting looks natural and he really makes the jungle look both eerie and beautiful. Seriously, this is gorgeous.

This movie has been decently well received. On Rotten Tomatoes it has an 87% positive rating and a “Fresh” certification. On Metacritic it has a score of 78/100. And on imdb.com it has a score of 6,6/10.

“The Lost City of Z” isn’t perfect, but it’s still a damn good movie. It has a really good plot, really good characters, great performances, great music, and great directing/cinematography. As previously mentioned, the pace can get a bit too meander-y at times, which is a bit of a problem. Time for my final score. *Ahem*. My final score for “The Lost City of Z” is an 8,87/10. While flawed, I’d say that it’s worth buying.

My review of “The Lost City of Z” is now completed.

“Zed” makes more sense than “Zee”, silly Americans.

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