the lost city of z review

What is it about the jungle that lures in filmmakers like a siren song? Over the years, auteurs like Werner Herzog (Fitzcarraldo), Francis Ford Coppola (Apocalypse Now), and Peter Weir (The Mosquito Coast) have married the untold beauty of unexplored lands with the obsession that borders on insanity exemplified by protagonists who go deeper into those lands. Now, we have a new entry in the subgenre: The Lost City of Z, courtesy of writer/director James Gray, telling a true story of a British explorer who’s seduced by the jungles of South America once and is unable to shake their pull on his psyche. While The Lost City of Z is perhaps not as overheated a depiction of the madness of obsession as Fitzcarraldo or Apocalypse Now, it’s no less entrancing and enormous.

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James Gray interview

For almost a decade, James Gray has been working on an adaptation of David Grann‘s bestselling book The Lost City of Z, which tells the story of Colonel Percy Fawcett (Charlie Hunnam), a man searching for a lost civilization in the Amazon. After years of trying, Gray’s lush vision has finally made it to the screen.

Told through dreamlike visuals – a blend of smoke, fire, and wilderness – captured by Gray and cinematographer Darius Khondji (Se7en), The Lost City of Z is a beautiful story about one man’s quest driven by the purest of motivations. It’s a long and arduous journey with more heart than madness. While the director behind The Immigrant and The Yards took inspiration from some of the most famous Heart Of Darkness-esque tales, he set out to make a film more poetic and transcendent, as Gray puts it.

Here is our full interview with Gray.

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The Lost City of Z Trailer - Charlie Hunnam

Charlie Hunnam has taken on giant monsters and motorcycle gangs before, but this spring he’ll confront a hidden civilization deep in the jungle of the Amazon.

The Lost City of Z follows Charlie Hunnam as real life British explorer Percy Fawcett, a man who set out into the Amazon in the early 1900s in order to find a civilization of people he believed to be living in the jungle. Looked down upon by his colleagues, Fawcett hoped to find answers to the questions about where humanity came from by learning whether or not the mysterious people of the jungle had a civilization that predated our own. As you can imagine, this journey was filled with great danger, and you can see just how risky it was in a new trailer. Read More »

The Lost City of Z Trailer

Mankind has always had a predilection towards exploring the unknown, journeying to places that most people have never been and will never go. The Lost City of Z tells the story of a historical expedition taken upon by explorer Percy Fawcett (Charlie Hunnam) as he ventures deep into the uncharted territory of the Amazon jungle in the 1920s. Though he disappeared in 1925 with no official recount of what he discovered, director James Grey imagines what it might have been like, based on the non-fiction bestseller by author David Grann.

Watch a new The Lost City of Z trailer after the jump. Read More »

The Lost City of Z Trailer - Charlie Hunnam

An adaptation of the best-selling book The Lost City of Z has been in the works for years. While names like Brad Pitt and Benedict Cumberbatch in the lead role came and went, the film from James Gray ended up landing younger star Charlie Hunnam (Pacific Rim) in the lead role with Robert Pattinson, Tom Holland and Sienna Miller making up the supporting cast. Now we finally get to see what the film has in store for us with The Lost City of Z teaser trailer that was just released. Read More »

The Lost City of Z Release Date - Charlie Hunnam

This weekend brings the world premiere of The Lost City of Z as the closing night film of the New York Film Festival. The adaptation of David Grann‘s true story of the same name has been written and directed by James Gray, and we’ve been waiting to hear when this movie might finally get a release after the trailer leaked earlier this past spring (and was taken down shortly thereafter). Now we finally have an answer. Read More »

Robert Pattinson

UPDATE: The trailer has been removed by request of the production company. The above image is from Water for Elephants.

After developing for years and going through iterations with the likes of Brad Pitt and Benedict Cumberbatch in lead roles, James Gray‘s adaptation of the best-selling book The Lost City of Z is finally on film, and it’s looking to hit the big screen sometime soon. Up until today, we hadn’t seen anything from the movie, but a sales trailer has been discovered online (for now), just sitting there for about a month now. It gives us a good idea of what we can expect from this exploration epic that finds Charlie Hunnam and Robert Pattinson discovering a tribe of cannibals in the Amazon jungle. Watch below. Read More »

Lost City of Z cast

After years of development and quite a lot of uncertainty, the film adaptation of David Grann‘s book The Lost City of Z is now shooting, with James Gray directing and Charlie Hunnam in the lead role of Percy Fawcett, who vanished in the 1920s while searching for the fabled El Dorado, the city of gold in the Amazon which had captivated explorers for decades.

We’ve known most of the cast, which also features Sienna Miller and Robert Pattinson, for a while. but the start of production announcement also brings the news that Tom Holland, Marvel’s future Spider-Man, seen above in Ron Howard’s In the Heart of the Sea, will have a role as well. Read More »

Cosmopolis header

It’s fun to see the development of the careers of Robert Pattinson and Daniel Radcliffe to have similar careers after their respective tween franchises ended. Radcliffe has been canny with his post-Potter gigs, choosing projects that better straddle art and mainstream.

Pattinson has gone more for the weird when it comes to gigs outside Twilight. (Both the intentionally weird, and the unwittingly so.) And he’s got another gig with Cronenberg in the works now, a job with Werner Herzog, and a role in The Rover, from Animal Kingdom director David Michôd. That’s good company to be in.

Now add The Lost City of Z, to be directed by James Gray based on the book by David Grann about doomed Amazon explorer Colonel Percy Harrison Fawcett. Read More »

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Benedict Cumberbatch

Only time will tell whether there’s any truth to those Star Wars Episode VII rumors, but in the meantime Benedict Cumberbatch has booked himself a different juicy new role. The Brit actor is in negotiations for The Lost City of Z, based on David Grann‘s book about the real-life mystery of explorer Percy Fawcett.

The project has been developing for years, but this is the first major step forward we’ve heard about in quite some time. James Gray (We Own the Night) remains attached to direct from his own adapted screenplay. Hit the jump to get some background on the project, and to learn more about Fawcett’s fascinating story.

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