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Featured Movie Reviews

The Lost City

Updated: Aug 9, 2023

Loaded with potential and saddled by predictability, THE LOST CITY has some hilarious moments buried in its running time.

If you’ve seen “Romancing the Stone” you know the entire plot.

Sandra Bullock is Loretta Sage, a talented writer stuck creating tawdry romance novels. Her late husband was an archeologist & treasure hunter and she’s barely left the house since he passed away five years earlier.

She’s about to start a book tour to launch her latest tripe, saddled with her vapid book cover model Alan (Channing Tatum) at her side. He’s not the brightest bulb but looks good on the cover. Alan sees himself as a real-life hero, blurring the lines between his fictional character and his real abilities.

Da’Vine Joy Randolph generates laughs as Loretta’s long-suffering agent, Beth.

After a disastrous and funny book launch press appearance, Loretta is kidnapped by wealthy billionaire Abagail Fairfax (Daniel Radcliffe) who’s found a clue to the location of a treasure that Loretta and her husband had been chasing. Radcliffe has a great time as an insecure wannabe megalomaniac and there are a few good jabs referencing his Harry Potter past.

She’s whisked away to a secret island and a massive dig operation around the Lost City.

Alan goes after her, hiring his yogi and former Navy Seal, Jack Trainer (Brad Pitt) to help him find Loretta. Pitt is hilarious and owns the entire movie. Unfortunately, he’s only in the adventure for about twenty minutes and when he’s gone, you can feel the energy drop dramatically out of the proceedings.

Pitt’s comic timing is flawless. I’d like to see an entire movie about Jack Trainer.

I couldn’t tell if writers Oren Uziel (Mortal Kombat) and Dana Fox (Cruella) were paying homage to past films or just ripping them off, but there aren’t any surprises here.

Fairfax holding Loretta at the dig site of the Lost City is a complete lift of the scenes in “Raiders of the Lost Ark” where Belloq held Marion at the ark site excavation.

The romance novelist goes on a real adventure in the jungle is lifted from “Romancing the Stone” in total, following the same story beats down to that dance in the tiny South American town after Loretta and Alan seem to escape the bad guys.

“Romancing” did it a thousand times better. Kathleen Turner and Michael Douglas burned more chemistry in silence than Bullock and Tatum can generate in their big moments.

It’s still funny in spots. Bullock is a great physical comedian and Tatum has a lot of fun sending up his “Magic Mike” persona. Oscar Nunez (The Office) is a welcome third act add as a puddle jumper pilot trying to get Beth to Loretta.

There are mild treasures in THE LOST CITY, but Pitt’s the only true gold. I’ll give it a C+.

Stay tuned post credits for one last gem with Pitt.

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