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Lost World

Bob Hoskins , James Fox , Stuart Orme    NR (Not Rated)   DVD
3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
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Not the Steven Spielberg blockbuster, this Lost World is a splendid 2001 BBC TV dramatization of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's famous adventure story. Bob Hoskins makes an unusually genial Professor Challenger, far less of a bully than Doyle's character, but his slightly stereotyped companions are nicely filled out by a solid cast. James Fox is Challenger's more timid but still covertly adventurous rival, Tom Ward is the mustachioed big-game hunter who faces an allosaur with an elephant gun, and Matthew Rhys plays the tagalong reporter hoping to impress his faithless fiancée.

As usual, the adaptation adds a woman--orphaned jungle girl Elaine Cassidy--to the expedition, and an interesting villain (religious fanatic Peter Falk) beefs up the travelogue by marooning Challenger's gang on the South American plateau where dinosaurs, cavemen, and Indians coexist eventfully. The Walking with Dinosaurs-style effects work well for the TV frame, but the real success is in integrating the adventuring with subtle eco-awareness, complex character interplay, and the reliable wonder of soaring pteranodons and carnosaur attacks. --Kim Newman



Customer Reviews

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Hit and Miss April 17 2003
By A Customer
Format:DVD
I was pleased to see a version of this story that had the special effects to back up the concept. However, I think I almost would have rather had a "special edition" of the version with the perfectly-cast John Rhys-Davies than this creationist-basher. The writers used just enough of the standard Creationist arguments to make them sound like legit, but then showed the character (not in the book) as having no answer to the "problems" posed by the staunchly evolutionist scientist. What I'm wondering is why the filmmakers chose a perfectly good (if Darwin-inspired) story to make a pedestal for evolutionist propaganda. It makes it difficult to watch for me, because I am tired of movies and TV portraying preachers as ignorant and uneducated in the way of science, and to use half-hearted attempts at "legitimate" creationist positions in order to make them look even more foolish strikes me as particularly vindictive.
Pros: Good look to the story; great effects. Good cast.
Cons: One of many unfaithful adaptations of the book, NOT widescreen, and certainly the writers had a malicious agenda (as opposed to a simple erroneous worldview). Also, the ape-scat scene was pretty nasty.
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Format:VHS Tape
The BBC/A&E production of "The Lost World" tunred out much better than I expected, giving us slick storytelling and solid characters with good acting.
THE STORY is 'basically' the same. Well, at first I was worried looking at the cover -- six people apparently looking at the dinosaurs. Six? Yes, the film, based on Conan Doyle's 1912 novel, added TWO extra characters to the original expedition team (misunderstood genius Prof. Challenger, natural-born cynic Prof. Summerlee, newsreporter Edward Malone, adventure-loving hunter Lord Roxton), which are about to reveal the secret of the plateau in the Amazon, and to prove that dinosaurs are still living there.
THE NEW CHARACTERS are one zealous priest and his niece, played by Peter Falk and Elaine Cassidy respectively. They join in Professor Challenger (Bob Hoskins) and his team in the jungle, only to complicate the situation -- deadly dinosaurs, the more dangerous apemen (or the Missing Link) and the "Indians" (so they say).
The addition, in fact, works for the better, getting rid of the annoying elements in the original book, like the patronizing way Doyle treated the natives in the book. And other changes done to the story are justified, but some might find the different tone in the ending (or the modernized answer to Challenger's expedition) slightly anti-climax, compared with the slient version, or Spielberg's "Lost World."
SPECIAL EFFECTS are first-rate, with the convincing images of dinosaurs walking in the jungle. The fierce fight between the humans and the allosaurs is the highlight of the film though some kids find it too horrible. (And parents should be warned that there is a suggested scene of cannibalism).
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4.0 out of 5 stars What Do The Drums Say, B'wana? Nov. 25 2002
Format:DVD
Quite watchable made-for-TV (A&E Network) adaptation of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's sci-fi adventure. I'll admit I've never read the original story so I don't have any book-to-screen nitpicks to bore you with. Taken as it is, this production is an old-fashioned, "grand" adventure tale that plunges right into the action as soon as the opening credits roll (no time for exposition...got to leave room for those "Biography" promos!) Bob Hoskins goes into "gruff yet lovable fireplug" mode as expedition leader Professor Challenger, off to investigate an evolutionary anamoly where dinosaurs, fierce cannibals and "apemen" exist together on an uncharted plateau in South America. Fellow scientist James Fox gives comic relief playing a skeptical "Scully" to Hoskins' "Mulder". Newcomer Tom Ward plays the dashing Errol Flynn/Clark Gable-type adventurer with much aplomb. Dark-eyed Irish beauty Elaine Cassidy, who starred with Hoskins in the little-known gem "Felicia's Journey" (check it out), gives good support as the locally-raised Englishwoman who serves as thier jungle-savvy guide. Good special effects, especially in an exciting and truly terrifying attack on a native village by a pack of ravenous "Maneater" dinosaurs. Good harmless fun, if you're in a purely "popcorn" mood.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Good, but not Doyle and not Widescreen! Nov. 3 2002
Format:DVD
Note: This DVD release is not in a widescreen format as advertised, regardless of what the packaging or Amazon.com listing indicates. A&E have released this film ONLY in a full-screen (4:3) version!
The recent BBC/A&E(2001 UK & 2002 US) co-production of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's classic dinosaur tale The Lost World is something of a mixed bag in this DVD release. While the adaptation is interesting in its own right, it is not a particularly faithful version of the classic text. Instead of being the "Boys Own" adventure tale of yesteryear it has become something of a special effects laden morality play that touches on the madness of religious zeal and makes an effort to have science triumph over sheer belief. This moral quandary is demonstrated by the inclusion of Peter Falk's character - the Rev. Theo Kerr. Not only does Kerr become a catalyst for catastrophy in this teleplay, but he also changes the tone of the entire production with his religious zealotry and stance against evolution. While the character does give the viewer the benefit of a villain to jeer, the subplot does drag down the pace of the original storyline. The inclusion of the Agnes Cluny character is less of an imposition than one would expect, particularly surprising when one considers that her inclusion is only to make the whole thing more PC for the 21st century by including a woman into the storyline.
Bob Hoskins, while a talented and highly watchable actor, just isn't the robust and bombastic George Edward Challenger of the novel. Where were the outbursts of temper? The physical ejection of Malone from Challennger's home? In fact, where were any of the touches that make Challenger the specific character he is rather than just another nutty professor?
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Most recent customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars This is a double plus good adaptation of Arthur Conan Doyle's "Lost...
An incidentally put together team of an explorer (Bob Hoskins), his rival (James Fox), a reporter, (Matthew Rhys), a hunter (Tom Ward), a missionary (Peter Falk), and his jungle... Read more
Published 9 months ago by bernie
5.0 out of 5 stars What may be Peter Falk's greatest performance!
Sir Arthur Conan-Doyle's The Lost World, a BBC television production presented on A&E, may very well host Peter Falk's greatest performance as Reverend Theo Kerr, missionary and... Read more
Published on July 15 2011 by Sid Matheson
5.0 out of 5 stars The REAL Lost World
This is the Ultimate 'Lost World' Dinosaur movie experience. Had this been released in the theaters it may have been just as big, if not bigger, than the Jurassic Park Lost World. Read more
Published on March 18 2003 by Gary Shultis Jr.
3.0 out of 5 stars If it WAS Widescreen I might have been worth the price.
The word Widescreen is used to promote this two DVD set.It's all over the packaging as an exclusive feature of this edition. Read more
Published on Nov. 4 2002
5.0 out of 5 stars The Lost World
I'v never read the novel (plan to some day), but this is the only movie version that I actually enjoyed. The whole film was exellent. Read more
Published on Oct. 21 2002 by Craig Bard
1.0 out of 5 stars Lost Opportunity
The original novel is a fabulous romance -- by turns hilarious, mysterious, frightening and moving -- in which four Edwardian gentlemen travel into a prehistoric hell and... Read more
Published on Oct. 12 2002
5.0 out of 5 stars Top quality tv movie
The Lost World (2001) is high quality. I spent four hours over two days watching this on tv with all the commercials in between. Read more
Published on Oct. 9 2002 by Mr. T. Pace
5.0 out of 5 stars The besf film adaptation ever of Doyle's novel!
If you didn't see this wonderful Lost World minseries A&E did, buy the DVD or video. Or do like I did-buy it after having seen it on A&E. Read more
Published on Oct. 7 2002 by Captain Hornblower
1.0 out of 5 stars the lost world why you shoud read the book!
there are great books and there are great films the book is one of the best adventure stories you will ever read the film is not crying out for a screenplay and script... Read more
Published on Sept. 28 2002 by Stephen Scott
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