The Lost City of Z tells the incredible true story of British explorer Percy Fawcett, who journeys into the Amazon at the dawn of the 20th century and discovers evidence of a previously unknown, advanced civilization that may have once inhabited the region. Despite being ridiculed by the scientific establishment who regard indigenous populations as "savages," the determined Fawcett - supported by his devoted wife, son and aide de camp returns time and again to his beloved jungle in an attempt to prove his case, culminating in his mysterious disappearance in 1925.
The decision to shoot on 35mm may have been the film's saving grace, as the production team's computers proved no match for the oppressive jungle conditions. "The humidity got to my Mac to the point where it wouldn't turn on anymore," Gray recalls. "Looking back on it now, the film format worked out pretty well because it's a mechanical process. If I'd relied on digital, the machines might have conked out completely and then I'd be in real trouble." See more »
If we may find a city, where one was considered impossible to exist, it may well write a whole new chapter in human history.
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It's very rare in 2017 Hollywood that we get an epic like The Lost City of Z. Albeit noticeably flawed in many aspects, this film hearkens back to the days where exploration epics were a normalcy in the filmmaking world.
The strengths of The Lost City of Z lie with its unique journey the protagonist takes, and not necessarily with the protagonist or the film itself. What I mean by that is that I think the actual story the film is based on is more interesting than how the film portrays it. Sometimes biopics that span a great length of time are difficult to effectively portray on the big screen. Because 'Z' takes place over the course of roughly 20 years, it becomes increasingly tough to grapple onto something worth enjoying. Every time one of his explorations seems to get interesting, we get interrupted by his abrupt return to civilization and more family drama. Whether or not that's how the true story of Percy Fawcett went is irrelevant. Sometimes it takes some tweaking to make for an entertaining feature length film.
Charlie Hunnam plays Fawcett, an explorer who seeks glory in finding a mysterious city of people which has "never been touched by a white man". Fawcett himself is an interesting character, especially when the film dives into his own psychology and obsession over 'Z'. He's a lot like Matthew McConaughey's character from Interstellar, always searching for something nobody has seen before even if means leaving his family for years at a time. Perhaps this is one of the reasons why Fawcett isn't very likable. We constantly see him leave his family even though, with the exception of war, he has a choice in the matter.
There is something to admire about someone, or in this case multiple people, who keep searching for the dreams no matter the cost. Fawcett, along with a few consistent compadres, go on dangerous expeditions through the jungle to find what they think is a real lost city. The aspects of the film I enjoy the most are watching men go through hardships in search of something they truly care about. In this regard, the film is a fascinating exploration physically and mentally.
Aside from Hunnam, there are a few great performances from Sienna Miller as Nina Fawcett, Robert Pattinson as Henry Costin, and Tom Holland as Jack Fawcett. All elevating each scene they are in and making the journey worth it for sure. There's a lot this film does well, including making a lasting impact on viewers minds in terms of exploration, but the writing can be a little bit more polished with certain changes made to fit a movie and not just serve the story properly. There's a happy medium there that I think could have benefited the final product.
+Brings back a lost genre
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