Having professionally acted for nearly two decades, Alexandra Daddario has built up a solid resume of movie and TV work, from the Percy Jackson film series and Baywatch to White Collar and True Detective. Her latest project is Lost Girls & Love Hotels, a movie (based on the same-named book by Catherine Hanrahan) which sees her playing an American English teacher at a Japanese flight academy in Tokyo who is desperately trying to forget her past, and ends up becoming romantically involved with a Yakuza member.
So what’s the verdict on Lost Girls & Love Hotels from critics? Judging by the reviews that have come in, it doesn’t look like this movie will go down as a cinematic classic. Starting off, CinemaBlend’s own Eric Eisenberg gave Lost Girls & Love Hotels a measly one star out of five in his review, calling it a desperate attempt to “reach out to the Fifty Shades of Grey crowd” with its flashes of “taboo sex play,” not to mention that the lead protagonist also has “no real arc to follow.”
One could look at it as a PSA against self-loathing, but mostly it’s just a really bad movie.
CinemaBlend’s own Sean O’Connell was also similarly unimpressed with Lost Girls & Love Hotels, tweeting out the following about the movie’s poor quality.
Over at THR, John DeFore was slightly kinder to Lost Girls & Love Hotels, with Alexandra Daddario’s performance as Margaret being a “refuge from the genre and eye-candy roles that populate her filmography.” Nevertheless, DeFore’s review indicates that this is a movie that won’t appeal to a wide crowd.
Nipponophiles will find some pleasure here despite the mostly joyless story — Olsson's feel for the place is lived-in rather than touristic, emphasizing the small landmarks that a long-term visitor settles into after the sightseeing is done.
Variety’s Dennis Harvey had a mixed opinion about Lost Girls & Love Hotels, saying how the director, William Olsson, does a good job of “capturing the outside-looking-in gist of expatriate life in Tokyo’s overwhelming playground,” but the movie still failed to provide enough “definition” for the main protagonist.
… William Olsson’s film works as an atmospheric mood piece and sometime erotic drama. It’s less successful as a character study. That creates a certain hollowness at the core of a movie that ultimately should expose the tortured psychology of a figure who instead not only remains elusive, but never fully earns our sympathy or interest.
Finally, Travis Hopson from Punch Drunk Critics fell in the mixed area of the critical spectrum, giving Lost Girls & Love Hotels two and a half stars out of five and describing it as a Fifty Shades/Lost in Translation mashup that boasts gorgeous cinematography, but not a compelling script.
… For those who don’t have a particular affinity for Japan-set dramas, it’ll come across as a well-made but empty vessel where kink is mistaken for emotional complexity.
These are just some of the reviews out now for Lost Girls & Love Hotels, so feel free to elsewhere to learn what other critics thought about it. Along with Alexandra Daddario, the movie’s cast includes Carice van Houten, Takehiro Hira, Misuzu Kanno and Kate Easton.