The Lost World (1992) starring John Rhys-Davies, David Warner, Eric McCormack, Nathania Stanford directed by Timothy Bond Movie Review

The Lost World (1992)   2/52/52/52/52/5

Eric McCormack in The Lost World (1992)

It Lost Me

Wanting to make a name for himself, eager journalist Edward Malone (Eric McCormack) manages to befriend renowned explorer, Professor Challenger (John Rhys-Davies) who having returned from Africa with drawings of a strange place with strange creatures plans to return to find this place. With Edward agreeing to join him along with the beautiful and wealthy Jenny Nielson (Tamara Gorski) and Charger's rival Professor Summerlee (David Warner) they head to Africa in search of the lost world, a world cut off from evolution filled with animals thought to be extinct. But their exploration leads them in to danger and a need to put aside rivalries to save themselves.

I remember as a young teen there would be a movie which I discovered on TV whilst bored during summer holiday which charmed me; one year it was a Tarzan movie another it was some generic adventure movie from the 60s which featured a land of stop motion monsters and whilst the names of those movies have long left my mind I have fond memories of them. Now none of those movies were the 1992 version of Arthur Conan Doyle's "The Lost World" but this is the sort of adventure movie which would have grabbed my attention. But like those movies I watched as a child I know that if I were to stumble across them again now I would be bemused more by my fond memories for them than for what entertainment they delivered.

David Warner, John Rhys-Davies and Tamara Gorski in The Lost World (1992)

To put that in to context when it comes to this 1992 version of "The Lost World"; here is a movie set in 1912 and it has the sets and the costumes but it only seems to be going through the motions, recreating the look but not the atmosphere. When the expedition arrives in Africa and we meet the local tribe it does this strange thing of almost becoming contemporary in its portrayal of the tribe and the missionary rather than portraying them as to how they would have been. And I could go on because unsurprisingly when you have an explorer, a rival, a writer and an attractive woman, or in this case two as we have an attractive local who works as translator, there is plenty of potential for humour but so much of it fails to raise the laughs intended.

What this means a couple of decades after this version of "The Lost World" was made is that some things kind of work whilst other things simply don't. One of the things which work is John Rhys-Davies who has the look and the delivery to play a comically cantankerous explorer and the banter between his character and Warner's is enjoyable. But then there is Eric McCormack who sadly comes across as one of the blandest adventurers going. It makes it hit and miss which is also the case when it comes to the special effects of the prehistoric dinosaurs with a huge reliance on models.

What this all boils down to is that if you were around 13 back in 1992 and caught "The Lost World" I wouldn't be surprised if you had fond memories of it as it is that sort of childhood adventure movie. But whilst not terrible this version of "The Lost World" has some problems, especially in the casting which makes it weak and quite forgettable.