Not to be confused with that other very bad dinosaur movie of the same name, The Lost World is a modern adaptation of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's 1912 classic. This is the original Jurassic Park. It combines Victorian British heroism with big budget affects and succeeds wonderfully. The result is a heart-warming story with a dash of religion, a smidgen of romance and a lot of adventure.

Conan Doyle's story follows an expedition to the Amazon rain forest to discover the titular Lost World, where, it is believed, ancient beasts still roam the earth. The majority of director Stuart Ormes's visual masterpiece remains faithful to the author's vision, although small changes have been made to accommodate a 21st century audience - prime example is the fabrication of Peter Falk's character, Theo Kerr. Without giving away too much, anybody who has read the novel may be surprised by an only slightly altered ending.

The Lost World is packed to the brim with distinguished British actors, from Tim Healy who plays The Gazette owner to the illustrious James Fox as scientist Professor Summerlee. The latter joins Bob Hoskins, Matthew Rhys and the rest on their expedition to the forest. From there the group set out to find the mysterious plateau that acts as a gateway into the undiscovered world. It is here that things begins to turn sour. The religious ramblings of Falk, the discovery of vicious ape men, friendly Indians and scary dinosaurs ensure that the following two hours are not only nail-biting but, to some extent, educational.

Hoskins's portrayal of Professor Challenger is brilliant. He isn't exactly Indiana Jones, but clearly carries his own, as a determined scientist determined to make one discovery that will see his name go down in the history books.

For amateur palaeontologists everywhere, this is also a chance to marvel at the wonders of new technology, as the scary Allosaurus unleash terror onto everything human, and not quite so human.

The Lost World is definitely Jurassic Park for adults.

Reviewed on: 29 Jun 2002
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The Lost World packshot
Somewhere there is a Lost World waiting to be found by six intrepid explorers.
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Director: Stuart Orme

Writer: Tony Mulholland, Adrian Hodges, based on the novel by Arthur Conan Doyle

Starring: Bob Hoskins, James Fox, Tom Ward, Matthew Rhys, Elaine Cassidy, Peter Falk, Robert Hardy, Joanna Page, Tim Healy, Tessa Peake-Jones

Year: 2001

Runtime: 145 minutes

BBFC: 12 - Age Restricted

Country: UK


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