Certificate: 15

Running Time: 141 mins

Star Rating: 3/5

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A SPRAWLING true story of discovery at the turn of the 20th Century informs writer-director James Gray's ambitious journey into the heart of darkness. Based on author David Grann's nonfiction bestseller, The Lost City Of Z charts the battle between cartographer Percy Fawcett and the scientific establishment, who dismissed indigenous tribes of South America as "savages". In order to prove the snobbish academics wrong, Percy sacrifices relationships with his wife and children, and risks the safety of men in his care as he traces the Rio Verde upriver to its source.

British artillery officer Colonel Percy Fawcett (Charlie Hunnam) has been "rather unfortunate in his choice of ancestors". Sir George Goldie (Ian McDiarmid), president of the Royal Geographical Society, offers Percy a chance at redemption by mapping uncharted territory in Bolivia with the help of local tribesmen. Percy accepts and abandons his wife Nina (Sienna Miller) to venture into the unknown with aide-de-camp Corporal Henry Costin (Robert Pattinson). Eventually Percy returns home with a strong conviction that he has stumbled upon proof of a lost civilisation - which he calls Z - that will astound the academic elite.

Shot on location in the Colombian rainforest, where cast and crew faced snakes and bouts of dengue fever, The Lost City Of Z is a handsome tribute to one man's struggle against himself and Mother Nature.

Hunnam delivers one of the strongest performances of his career; Pattinson is reserved in support, while Miller embodies an endlessly supportive spouse, who encourages her husband to chase his impossible dream. Unquestionably, Gray suffers from acute jungle fever expecting us to retain focus for almost two-and-a-half meandering hours.