The Lost World (1998 film)
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|The Lost World|
|Directed by||Bob Keen|
|Produced by||Murray Shostak|
|Screenplay by||Jean LaFleur|
The novel of the same name|
by Arthur Conan Doyle
Gregoriane Minot Payeur
Mongolia, 1934. The researcher Maple White (Jack Langedijk), together with his assistant Azbek (Russell Yuen), discovers an unknown world populated by dinosaurs, situated on a plateau in Mongolia. After having found a Quetzalcoatlus's egg in a cave, White celebrates the discovery, with Azbek, uncorking a bottle of champagne and listening to classical music. Azbek is attacked and killed by Eudimorphodons, which also attacks White who falls from the plateau holding onto a rope; he survives but is seriously wounded, White is found again and taken care of by Myar and Djena (Gregorian Minot Payeur), respectively Azbek's brother and sister; White asks the two to bring him his friend George Challenger (Patrick Bergin) to whom White gives an account of his adventures, proposing to Challenger that he should try to fully explore the plateau in his place.
Challenger returns to London, and organizes a lecture to try to convince some people to finance an expedition to prove that dinosaurs still exist despite scientific belief to the contrary. During the lecture, Challenger is derided and humiliated, not only from the students but also from his colleagues Leo Summerlee (Michael Sinelnikoff) and Lord Thomas (James Bradford). However, Lord Thomas ultimately grants permission for the expedition, on the condition that Summerlee accompany Challenger to act as "a critical eye". Subsequently, a spectator at the lecture, Oscar Perreault (Jacques Lessard), proposes to pay the expedition's expenses to Mongolia, on the condition that the scientists capture a living dinosaur and to exhibit it to the public wherever he wishes; and that his associate John Roxton (David Nerman) goes along to represent his interests. Challenger unwillingly accepts the proposal. After concluding the lecture, Challenger bumps into the young journalist Arthur Malone, who he suggests joins the expedition as a documentor. After granting permission to Malone, Challenger is confronted by the same woman who had interrupted his lecture earlier- who reveals herself to be none other than the late Dr. White's daughter, Amanda, who also insists on joining the team in order to represent her father's interests.
In the following days, the team heads to Mongolia, stopping on the journey to pick up their guides, including the young siblings Myar and Djena; as the journey goes on, Djena becomes very attached to Malone and strong connection is built between the two. Their transportation suffers a breakdown and the team is forced to continue the trip on foot. One of the guides is killed by what is presumably a prehistoric insect, however, despite misgivings on the part of the guides, the team continues on after conducting a funeral, according to the local rites.
The team finally reaches the foot of the plateau where Amanda White is abducted by two neanderthals. Upon noticing Amanda's disappearance the team immediately goes in search of her. Challenger and Roxton quickly find her suspended from a ritual framework by her abductors. In rescuing her, they are also forced to face the neanderthal tribe - who are only defeated by use of modern weaponry. The team escapes the charging natives by use of a hot air balloon, in which they fly up the plateau.
Using binoculars Summerlee observes three Quetzalcoatlus nearby; the animals prove to be hostile and immediately attack the balloon, knocking the young Myar from it and then causing an irreparable tear to the balloon itself, causing the whole team to plummet to the plateau below.
Upon arriving the team is amazed to see a Brontosaurus. Djena is bitten by an unknown creature in a water court but is saved by Challenger. After a search the team find shelter in a cave, where they discover a series of intricate symbols on the walls. Roxton decides to return to the wreckage of the balloon to recover his supplies. Upon his return he presents the team with a young Centrosaurus which he wants to sell for $100,000. Roxton the reveals to the team that he intends to make the plateau an area exclusively for high-risk game hunting, and has planned to do so all along. Roxton then orders Malone to tie Djena and Challenger to tie Malone. Taking advantage of Roxton's temporary distraction, Challenger succeeds in disarming Roxton instead and recovers the rifle. However, Roxton aims a knife Djena's neck, forcing Challenger to return the rifle to him. Djena once again distracts Roxton by biting Roxton's hand and Challenger attacks him; ultimately Challenger is able to render Roxton unconscious.
Meanwhile, Amanda White and Professor Summerlee are busy trying to decipher the symbols on the cave walls. They are attacked by a dinosaur but are able to fight it off. At the same time, Challenger, Malone and Djena are returning with the tied-up Roxton, and are attacked by a giant crocodile. The crock manages to snap only Roxton, leaving the other three unscathed.
Returning to the cave, Amanda White tells the Mongolia's lost world history through the symbols; these tell of a tribe, the kerraks, that have adapted to the place, some dinosaurs were chased by the kerraks, some of which were extinguished and, for this, the native precedents, the neanderthals, chased the kerraks to avoid the total destruction of the lost world, becoming the plateau's custodians. After the story, Professor Summerlee reveals to the team that he doesn't want to return to London, deciding to pass the rest of his life in studying the plateau's environment. Shortly after this a neanderthal appears in the cave, and shoots Summerlee with a poison dart. The dart causes Summerlee to become very disoriented and experience hallucinations. Under its influence he goes out from the cave and is killed by a Tyrannosaurus.
The rest of the team finds the dead body of Summerlee, which they cover with a British flag; subsequently. Returning to the cave, Amanda White and Challenger discover that there is, in fact, a larger cave behind the first, the same one discovered by Maple White in the film's first scenes. Exploring the cave the two come across the skeleton of the unlucky Azbek and White's vinyal record. In the same instant, a battered John Roxton, reveals to Amanda White and to Challenger that the cave is full of explosive and that the two cannot be not be saved once he lights the fuse. Roxton is also in possession of a Eudimorphodon, which frees itself and attacks him, causing him to fall from the plateau, killing it. Before falling however, Roxton manages to light the fuse and Amanda and Challenger barely succeed in escaping.
While trying to prepare a parachute, Djena finds a dead Velociraptor and is attacked by Eoraptors, which then attack the other team members. Later that night, a Tyrannosaurus attacks the camp; the team tries to escape, but Djena is once again attacked by the Eoraptors, when they disperse Djena is attacked and killed by the T-Rex.
Wanting to avenge Djena, Malone distracts the T-Rex by throwing rocks at it . He is ultimately able to kill the T-Rex with a large blast of fire by igniting flammable gas caused by a nearby volcano. Amanda White and Challenger are saved from the hot flash by throwing themselves down from the plateau's frame with the parachute that Deja had been preparing earlier.
Returning to London, Challenger communicates the death of his companions to the students. On account of the dangerousness of the place, he chooses to state that the expedition found nothing, thus making sure that no one else goes looking for the plateau.
In the last scenes of the film, we see that Malone - the film's narrator - has remained on the plateau and adapted to life there.
- Patrick Bergin: Professor George Challenger
- Jayne Heitmeyer: Amanda White
- Julian Casey: Arthur Malone
- David Nerman: Lord John Roxton
- Michael Sinelnikoff: Professor Leo Summerlee
- Gregoriane Minot Payeur: Djena
- Jack Langedijk: Maple White
- Russell Yuen: Azbek/Myar/Neanderthal
- James Bradford: Lord Thomas
- Jacques Lessard: Oscar Perreault
- Martin Sims: Studente
- Gouchy Boy, Michael Gurman, Michel Perron, Sam Stone, Richard Zeman: the Neanderthals
The film was released on VHS in the U.S. in 1998, and was released on DVD in 2000.