★★★★★ - A Review by Cameron Kanachki
"This search for Z, I can no longer bear the cost." "You've come to doubt its existence?" "No. I only doubt that Z will provide all the answers you seek from it." That's a part of a scintillating conversation between Robert Pattinson & Charlie Hunnam in The Lost City of Z, an absolutely stunning modern epic. The film is based on the 2009 book The Lost City of Z by David Grann, which documented the true story of explorer Percy Fawcett. Set between 1905-1925, Hunnam plays Col. Percy Fawcett, a young British officer asked by the Royal Geographical Society to go to the Amazon to solve a border dispute between Bolivia & Brazil. On the way to Brazil, Fawcett meets Cpl. Henry Costin (played by Robert Pattinson), who has knowledge of the Amazon rainforest. In the Amazon, Fawcett is told of an ancient lost city in the jungle filled with people & covered in gold. The city is referred to as "Z." Fawcett is skeptical at first, but finds some evidence of it, & becomes convinced to find it.
Fawcett returns to London & his family: his wife Nina (played by Sienna Miller); his oldest son, Jack (played by Tom Holland); & his youngest son, Brian (played by Daniel Huttlestone). Fawcett is praised by the people, but the Royal Geographical Society ridicules him. Eventually, Percy goes back, but he doesn't find Z, destroying Fawcett's reputation. Eventually, in 1925, Fawcett returns to the Amazon for a third time, this time with Jack & without Costin, but something happens during the search that changes everything.
The cast is amazing. James Gray's direction & screenplay is amazing. The cinematography by Darius Khondji is stunning. The editing by John Axlerad is excellent. The costume design by Sonia Grande is amazing. And the production design by Jean-Vincent Puzos is phenomenal. This is one of the best films of the year so far.