Faith and Film: The Lost City of Z

Movie Review by Fr. Tom Condon, O.P.

The Lost City of Z is the engrossing true story of British adventurer Percy Fawcett (Charlie Hunnam) who lived in the early 20th Century. When the film opens, Percy, who has experience with mapmaking, is offered the opportunity to travel to South America, to chart the disputed boundary between Brazil and Bolivia. The journey would be long and dangerous, deep in the jungle. Percy discusses this with his wife Nina (Sienna Miller) who is pregnant with their first child. They both decide that Percy should go on this expedition, even though he would miss the birth of their child.

Percy loves the adventure and the jungle. Along with his small group of fellow travelers, they travel far into the Amazon region, navigating both the dangerous rapids and the arrows of the native tribesmen. Percy gains an admiration for the indigenous people, and defends them on his return to England, where even educated members of the Royal Geographic Society consider them to be “savages.” Percy also hears rumors of a fabulous lost city of Z, which he is determined to find.