Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Just the other day, a bunch of friends and I were discussing how it’s cool that older women are getting cast in younger roles, because it’s been a perk reserved for male actors for far too long. And then there’s 57-year-old Sandra Bullock romancing 41-year-old Channing Tatum in 2022 film ‘The Lost City’ and we are here cheering for it.

If you’ve seen the trailer, you get exactly what it offers – an action-comedy, which is about a popular (recently widowed) romance author Loretta (Sandra) getting kidnapped by a psycho Billionaire (Daniel Radcliffe) to help him find a mythical treasure on a remote island. Because he thinks ‘amidst the pages of coital revelry’ of her latest novel, lies buried her knowledge of an ancient language that’ll help uncover the mysteries of an ancient king’s tomb. Luckily for Lorretta, her handsome cover-model Alan-aka-Dash sets out to rescue her, but he is no hero, so their escape adventure is filled with hiccups.

For most of the film, Loretta is wearing a shiny-glitter-filled-loud tight purple jumpsuit, which she was already uncomfortable wearing at a book launch; imagine having to run through jungles in it. So the dress is a whimsical character in itself. Sandra is on point as the jaded/tired/disillusioned romance author, who thinks her work is trash, but well, they pay the bills. Channing Tatum with his G.I. Joe action figure body is kind of childlike and adorable as the blonde model Alan, evidently crushing on Lorretta. It’s Brad Pitt who gets to kick most of the butt in his very brief but exciting cameo. Daniel Radcliffe with his stunning blue eyes is incredibly entertaining as psychotic villain Abigail Fairfax. He has some of the most witty lines in the film and delivers them with a dramatic British accent.

Channing Tatum’s dashing entry sequence as a book-cover model with long luscious hair, riding a horse on a beach, while dramatic music plays behind (The Final Countdown), reminded me of the 1990 Bollywood blockbuster ‘Maine Pyaar Kiya’ starring Salman Khan, because one of its track used the same music. While Alan is a bit of simpleton, Sandra’s character is a lot more layered, she may write pulpy-sexy-romances, but is an intelligent being who knows her history. Losing her archaeologist husband to death makes her reclusive, bitter and closed to adventures. Any other history enthusiast in their right mind would’ve said agreed to an eccentric rich dude’s offer to go to a beautiful pacific Island on a treasure-hunt. And if you were wondering, yes, there is an intriguing bit of fictional history surrounding the treasure in the story.

This is a campy action comedy, which absurdly exaggerates things to draw laughs. Like a scene where cars are exploding in the background, but Brad Pitt flips his hair like a supermodel on the runway, while escaping from the blast. Sandra and Channing make a great on-screen team, so a lot of scenes that would’ve otherwise come across as awkward, are instead entertaining. However, the scenes minus the principal characters aren’t interesting enough, like a small sub-plot about Loretta’s agent Beth (Da’Vine Joy Randolph) going on her own to rescue her writer. Most of the movie is pretty fun, even though the writing keeps floundering in between.

If Paramount decides to make a sequel the with lead duo, I’d definitely go watch it in the theater. Oh and there’s a post credit scene, it doesn’t come at the exact end, but just a little after the end credits start rolling.

It’s a 7/10 from me. (The film is now on Netflix)

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Ep 66: 5 Things That Keep ‘All Of Us Are Dead’ Alive