The Lost City (2022)

Sandra Bullock, Channing Tatum, Daniel Radcliffe, Da'Vine Joy Randolph,
A reclusive romance novelist on a book tour with her cover model gets swept up in a kidnapping attempt that lands them both in a cutthroat jungle adventure.
  • 6.2 /10.0 IMDB Rating:
  • DatePublished:
  • 2022-05-11 Added:
  • Oren Uziel, Dana Fox, Seth Gordon, Writer:
  • Aaron Nee, Adam Nee, Director:
  • Liza Chasin, Producer:

All subtitles:



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Trailer:

6 / 10

silly and formulaic by design

Greetings again from the darkness. It's not billed as a remake of ROMANCING THE STONE (1984), and perhaps that's because it borrows from many adventure romantic-comedies over the years. Brothers and co-directors Aaron Nee and Adam Nee (BAND OF ROBBERS, 2015) have proven they can deliver exactly what is promised from a script by co-writers Oren Uziel (MORTAL COMBAT, 2021) and Dana Fox (CRUELLA, 2021). Seth Gordon receives a story credit, which is a bit ironic considering he has been quoted with, "The best stories are rooted in reality."

Oscar winner Sandra Bullock stars as grieving, reclusive and highly successful romance novelist Loretta Sage, and Channing Tatum co-stars as her long-time and extremely popular cover model, Adam (in what is obviously a 'wink and a nod' to Fabio). Loretta's love of history, and the passing of her husband, have combined to make her despise the books she writes and the publicity tours she's required to attend ... especially when being forced to wear a skintight purple/fuchsia sequined onesie. On the other hand, vapid model Adam relishes giving the audience what they want - strutting, hair waving, and bare chest.

After their most recent event goes sideways, Loretta is kidnapped by the villainous rich guy with a so-called gender-neutral name of Abigail Fairfax (Daniel Radcliffe). He's read her latest book and needs her help in locating the 'Crown of Fire' hidden somewhere on a remote island he purchased for this reason. Things have to move quickly before the volcano erupts and buries the treasure. At this point, Adam is committed to rescuing Loretta and proving that he's more than a pretty face. Loretta's stressed out literary agent Beth (Da'Vine Joy Randolph, DOLEMITE IS MY NAME, 2019) is determined to save her writer-asset, while the newly hired social media director (Patti Harrison) acts goofy (and deserved better lines).

It's regrettable, yet a sign of the times, that (2-time Oscar winner) Brad Pitt's cameo is included in the trailer. This should have been a pleasant surprise for viewers, and instead is spoiled by the clip. He has fun with his role as former Navy Seal and meditation partner with Adam, as the two work towards Loretta's rescue. The time on the island combines the adventure sequences with the slow-build of the romantic bond between Loretta and Adam, and both actors do their thing. It's mostly Mr. Radcliffe who seems a bit out of place as he goes big in his role as villain, when some subtlety might have played better. Then again, there is nothing subtle about this production, including the scenes with Beth and an oddball pilot with a goat-fetish played by Oscar Nunez ("The Office").

Sandra Bullock and Channing Tatum can play these characters in their sleep, and to their credit, they both seem engaged and willing to put forth the necessary effort. Tatum especially embraces the duality of a preening cover boy and the sensitive type out to prove he has substance. It's an easy film to criticize, but why would you? It's meant to be harmless fun and bring joy to movie lovers. It's totally fine to make a silly formulaic movie when your objective is to make a silly formulaic movie.

Opening in theaters on March 25, 2022.

5 / 10

Pieces that work and pieces that don't

The Lost City has pieces that work and pieces that don't. Placing pretenders into an actual adventure is good for laughs and heart, yet much of this script is generic. Unimaginative MacGuffins, flat villains, and predictable romances are individually forgivable, but together, they override the premise's charm. Furthermore, the dialogue, humor, and plot devices are subpar. The cast enhances the material (especially Pitt and Radcliffe), but some scenes are groaners. Tatum's charisma shines through and Pitt's cameo provides flavor, but that isn't enough to pull The Lost City out of mediocrity. It isn't painful, but The Lost City misses more than it hits.

Meanwhile, The Lost City's filmmaking is average. Its minor positives are the cinematography (intermittently dramatizing comedy and action), the sound (selling the combat and jungle setting), the production design (primarily real but often computerized), and the effects (employing real explosions amongst the CGI). Conversely, the editing occasionally sags (lingering on unessential jokes) and the music is distractingly trendy (forcing fun, rather than serving the narrative). Lastly, The Lost City lacks cohesion. Its humor and emotions never tonally blend, and instead take turns (which disconnects viewers). Ultimately, The Lost City has mild appeal, but functions inconsistently.

Writing: 3/10Direction: 3/10Cinematography: 6/10Acting: 5/10Editing: 4/10Sound: 6/10Score/Soundtrack: 4/10Production Design: 6/10Casting: 8/10Effects: 6/10

Overall Score: 5.1/10.

7 / 10

Simple, fun, hilarious....

7.0/10

I actually enjoyed this film way more than I expected. It perfectly fits into its categories of action, adventure, comedy, and romance.

The story was very enjoyable. It started off kind of wonky and felt like I was in for a bad time, but once the "prologue" passed and the main portion of the movie started it got much better.

The chemistry between Sandra Bullock and Channing Tatum worked surprisingly well, and only got better as the film progressed. I did enjoy Daniel Radcliffe as the antagonist. More of a bratty rich boy than an evil "I want to murder everyone" kind of bad guy.

By the end I felt that the big part of the film was that the romance was definitely geared towards the women while the action parts were geared towards the men. The comedy could've gone either way, and some may find certain parts funnier than others, both scenes and what's actually funny.

I also enjoyed the score. The way certain soundtracks were worked into the scenes noticeably helped enhance them (as soundtracks should).

Overall, I think this film is perfect for a movie date night. It's funny, it's romantic, it has a pretty good action/adventure story and it's not as cheesy as most romcoms tend to be.

I hope my review helps you make a choice on this film. Until next time....Enjoy the show!

7 / 10

A Solid, Throwback Comedy

Mainstream comedies that actually make it to theatres are slim to none these days. I remember a time when there was possibly a big comedy coming out every one or two months, with at least half of them being good, but in today's climate, humour is just tough to get right. I was very happy to see that Paramount would be taking a chance and releasing a big comedy in The Lost City this year, but I truly didn't know to what to expect from it. After seeing it in theatres, I'm happy to say that I had a good time with it. It's not great, but it felt like a throwback comedy, just with a modern twist.

To put it simply, The Lost City follows Loretta (Sandra Bullock) as she's on a book tour with her cover model Alan (Channing Tatum) to promote the release of "The Lost City of D," but they are swept up in a kidnapping and find themselves on a real adventure in the jungle. Abigail Fairfax (Daniel Radcliffe) is the reason Loretta was kidnapped in the first place, as he sees many similarities in her book to that of a real lost city. Being the privileged twerp that he is makes for a fun villainous storyline, even if it's pretty lame at times. Radcliffe aside (whom I still enjoyed), this film puts all of its weight on Tatum and Bullock to deliver the goods.

This premise is clever enough to work as a film, but it all comes down to who you cast and if they can make the material work. I never thought I needed to see this duo together, but I'm very happy they worked so well. On top of that, I have to admit that the best moments in the film feature Brad Pitt's character Jack Trainer. He isn't in the film much, but every second he was on screen had me laughing. Where I found the film to be slightly uneven though, was in the fact that I wasn't sure if it wanted to be funny or dramatic at times.

I'm all for heartfelt storylines as well as comedy, but I would argue that the majority of the humour is in the first half, while the second half gets a little more sentimental. These both worked in the movie, but the way the film begins gives absolutely no foreshadowing as to what the film will become by the end. I found that odd, but again, the cast sold all of the dialogue for me. From a few hilarious moments to some fun adventure/action throughout, as I said, I had a good time with this one.

In the end, The Lost City is exactly what I think moviegoers need right now. Nothing too serious or weighed down by heavy drama. This is a good old-fashioned, silly comedy/romance that I feel works for what it is. It's not going to be the type of comedy that a lot of people are going to watch over and over again, at least I don't think, but the heart of the film is in the right place and it never takes anything too seriously. Now playing in theatres, I'd give a recommendation to The Lost City.

7 / 10

Good fun.

I wasn't expecting to enjoy this, but on the whole, I did, some bits of it were pretty silly, but there were some nice moments, and a few bits that had me in stitches. Some of the sweeter, romance moments were maybe a little corny, but that's what was expected I guess.

Nice special effects, it looks great, I loved the locations used. You can argue it had a somewhat old fashioned, maybe old school vibe about it, but sometimes you just need a bit of silliness in your life.

Nicely acted, they all did a good job, Daniel Radcliffe was good fun, always enjoy his work.

It really does make the most of Channing Tatum's looks, and it does work, he is ridiculously handsome, and there are several tongue in cheek moments, he seems like a good sport.

7/10.