Movie Review – Film highlights social classes, passion, loyalty

By Jason Middlebrooks/south news editor

British explorer Percy Fawcett (Charlie Hunnam) and his crew set out on their second expedition to find the city of Zed. The film is based on real-life events of the explorer.
Photo courtesy Amazon Studios

The Lost City of Z is ideal for fans of adventure films and good storytelling.

The film, starring Charlie Hunnam, Robert Pattinson and Sienna Miller, is more interesting than entertaining. It follows the real-life events of Hunnam’s character Percival “Percy” Fawcett, a British soldier turned explorer, from 1905 to his disappearance in 1925.

Fawcett was approached by the Royal Geographical Society to explore the uncharted portions of the Amazonian jungle. Despite facing the dangers of indigenous tribes and disease, Percy accepted the mission to restore his family name, which was tainted by his alcoholic father.

The mission soon becomes Percy’s passion after he discovers evidence of an advanced civilization, which he names Zed. The discovery of Zed could possibly rewrite human history dramatically.

The film highlights the character traits of Fawcett, Pattinson’s character Robert Costin and Miller’s character Nina Fawcett well. The viewer can instantly see Percy’s and Robert’s passions for their work while Nina, Percy’s wife, highlights the growth of women’s rights in the 1900s. Director James Gray did not want to focus solely on Percy’s story. Focusing on life’s indignities, Gray wanted the film to be a “comment on who we were then and who we are now.”

The film itself tells a story of passion, loyalty, independence and pride. During his expeditions, Percy learns that life is not measured by awards or distinctive titles. It is what a person does with his life that counts.

The film was beautifully directed by Gray, who shot the movie using 35-millimeter film instead of using digital. The film is unique and aesthetically pleasing to the viewer’s eye.

Moviegoers who like adventure, a linear story and clear character development would enjoy this movie.