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Lost City [4K UHD], The
I recently became a member of a new club, one that sends you member updates, a magazine, has a powerful voting bloc and mentions other members' ages as if they were part of a school graduating class. It's not SAG, it's the AARP, though Sandra Bullock (58) is apparently a member of both, and good on her for doing so! That she still has the capability to act in the romantic action/comedy genre is a testament to her talents, even as she co-stars with someone more than 15 years her junior in The Lost City.
Aaron and Adam Nee co-wrote and co-directed the film, which has Bullock cast as romance writer Loretta Sage. She is successful but the tragic death of her husband as left her creativity sputtering, and finishing a novel focused on Dash, a charming, Fabio-type (Tatum, Magic Mike XXL). She does publicity for it alongside Dash, whose real name is Alan, and she is kidnapped by a estranged brother in a billionaire family (Daniel Radcliffe, Harry Potter), who has been seeking the Lost City and a priceless treasure in it. Loretta's knowledge is key to finding it, and Alan sets out to rescue Loretta and finish the book tour, among other things.
When you see Bullock and Tatum on the cover of The Lost City, you realize you're pretty much going to get solid, unremarkable versions of their characters onscreen, and you get those for a good 110 minutes or so. Tatum plays the same mimbo version of himself that he has for several films now, Bullock plays the awkward introverted type that she's done more or less for even longer. Her appeal as such that people are aware of what she and her co-star are like, so whatever enjoyment one has from it lies in the chemistry of the two.
And what do you know, the chemistry is fun! There is enough nuance with the two that each sort of takes on the roles that, in the past, would have been switched. Tatum's the intellectually helpless one who maybe kiiinda sorta could do the physical stuff when called upon. Bullock's the nerd but her brain helps keep the pair alive, and they have fun with it, even as the story is a stroll that has been done several times over. They poke fun at themselves, they laugh, you laugh, they (mostly) avoid the male/female eventually falling in love thing, the nuance of Bullock's character overcoming her guilt or personal trepidation being a nice understated wrinkle to her performance.
As far as the bad guy goes, look, I think Radcliffe is a good actor and a nice enough guy, but as the heavy for an action film, may be a little bit of a stretch. There is a cameo in here which may be designed to take some of the weight off of him in retrospect, and it is funny to watch the others play off of said person, but it kicks the can down the road for the story, which again, it should be noted is almost two hours long. I like laughing at Bullock and Tatum, but trim the fat off the brisket a little bit, please.
While The Lost City is fun, how much fun derived from it is based solely on the interplay between Tatum and Bullock, because everything else, including the guest appearance by the super secret person in the first act of the film, seems fluff and needless. And it doesn't carry the film because there's not much reason for it to, so the film seems like it's a little worthless. Fun, yes, but not much else.The UHD:
The Dolby Vision presentation for the film looks excellent, early on when the dream sequence shows the characters in magic hour, skin textures and hair looking natural and colors vivid, even with Bullock's pink glitter jumpsuit. The Dominican Republic exteriors are excellent with amazing depth, and black levels in the film are deep and inky as can be. Paramount does well by their recent titles, and this one is no exception.The Sound:
Dolby Atmos for this one, and it delivers the goods. Explosions and gunfire convincing, dialogue well-balanced in the center channel, a headshot provides some unexpected channel panning and directional effects to much laughter! The film's score sounds clear and the soundtrack is consistent and strong through the film, requiring little in the way of the user to do anything. It's a gem!The Extras:
A whole bunch of quick looks at the film's production, story and characters are included. "Dynamic Duo" (4:02) spends time with the stars, "Location Profile" (7:09) shows us the Caribbean island the production is set on. "Jungle Rescue" (6:25) takes a peek at the stunts involved, while "The Jumpsuit" (3:41) spends time on the thing Bullock spends the most time in the picture in. "Charcuterie" (3:32) examines the food table, "Villains of The Lost City" (5:29) shows us the men behind the scowls, and "Building The Lost City" (7:23) is your production design aspect. Eight deleted scenes (8:52) and a blooper reel (5:33) close things out.Final Thoughts:
In The Lost City, you get the cinematic equivalent of a Reese's Peanut Butter cup. Your Channing Tatum got in my Sandra Bullock? Well, your Sandra Bullock got in my Channing Tatum! Two great tastes that may go great together but will go to your hips after a while, and this does that. The story is pedestrian, the antagonist fine but saccharine, you're just here, if anything for C-Tates and Sandy. Technically the disc is great and the supplements are fine, but go rent, not buy, this one.