Movie Review: The Lost City of Z Is Visually Lush Epic About A Forgotten Explorer

What’s up with white men and uncharted lands?

The Lost City of Z (PG13)

Starring Charlie Hunnam, Robert Pattinson, Tom Holland 

Directed by James Gray

A National Geographic-fied Downton Abbey meets Heart of Darkness is how best to describe this Brad Pitt-produced biopic of Edwardian era British explorer Percy Fawcett.

Sons of Anarchy’s Charlie Hunnam plays Fawcett who in 1906, then a soldier, was recruited by The Royal Geographical Society of London, to map uncharted territory in Bolivia, and thus began his lifelong obsession to find an ancient civilisation in the Amazon.

Unlike his peers like Robert Peary and Ernest Shackleton — who led successful expeditions to the North and South Poles, respectively — Fawcett’s claim to fame is that he never found the fabled city and all he yielded were theories (which weren’t validated until recently).

As such, Fawcett’s heroic — and ultimately tragic — quest, while lavishly recreated and visually lush (it was filmed  in the Colombian rainforest), feels somewhat incomplete and unsatisfying.

But I was stoked to to learn more about Fawcett, who was said to be the inspiration for Indiana Jones. Isn’t curiosity the driving force of exploration? (***)

Photo: Cathay Keris Films 

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