The Lost World (1998 film)
This article's plot summary may be too long or excessively detailed. (March 2019) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)
|The Lost World|
|Directed by||Bob Keen|
|Produced by||Barry Barnholtz|
|Screenplay by||Jean LaFleur|
|Based on||The novel of the same name|
by Arthur Conan Doyle
Gregoriane Minot Payeur
In 1934, the researcher Maple White and his assistant Azbek discover 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. However, Azbek is attacked and killed by Eudimorphodons, which also attack 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, respectively Azbek's brother and sister. He asks the two to bring him his friend George Challenger, 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, England and organizes a lecture, trying to persuade some 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 and Lord Thomas. However, Lord Thomas ultimately grants permission for the expedition on the condition that Summerlee accompanies Challenger to act as a "critical eye". Subsequently, Oscar Perreault, a spectator at the lecture, proposes to pay for the expedition's expenses if the scientists capture a living dinosaur and exhibit it to the public wherever he wishes and his associate John Roxton joins the expedition in order to represent his interests. Challenger unwillingly accepts the proposal. After concluding the lecture, Challenger bumps into the young journalist Arthur Malone, whom he asks to join the expedition in order to document it. After granting permission to Malone, Challenger is confronted by the same woman who had interrupted his lecture earlier, who reveals herself to be 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. They stop on the way in order to pick up their guides, who include the young siblings Myar and Djena. After they resume their journey, their transportation suffers a breakdown, and the team is forced to continue the trip on foot. One of the guides is killed by an insect that is presumably a prehistoric; however, despite misgivings expressed by the guides, the team continues after conducting a funeral in accordance with the local rites.
The team finally reaches the foot of the plateau, where Amanda White is abducted by two neanderthals. Noticing Amanda's disappearance, the team searches for 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, which is defeated due to modern weaponry. The team escapes the charging natives with a hot air balloon, in which they fly up from the plateau.
Using binoculars, Summerlee observes three Quetzalcoatlus nearby. The animals prove to be hostile and immediately attack the balloon, knocking Myar from it and then causing an irreparable tear to the balloon, causing the whole team to plummet to the plateau below.
Upon arriving, the team is amazed to see a Brontosaurus. Meanwhile, Djena is bitten by an unknown creature in a water court but saved by Challenger. The team searches for and finds shelter in a cave, where it discovers a series of intricate symbols on the walls. Roxton decides to return to the wreckage of the balloon in order to recover his supplies. Upon his return he presents the team with a young Centrosaurus, which he wants to sell for $100,000. Roxton then 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. Then Roxton orders Malone to tie up Djena and Challenger to do the same 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 deciphering the symbols on the cave walls. They are attacked by a dinosaur but 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. It snaps only Roxton, leaving the other three unscathed.
Returning to the cave, Amanda White reports of Mongolia's lost history revealed through the symbols. These tell of a tribe, the kerraks. They interacted with prehistoric creatures: they hunted some dinosaurs, some of which became extinct; for this, their native predecessors, the neanderthals, chased the kerraks in order to avoid the total destruction of the lost world, becoming the plateau's guardians. After hearing the story, Professor Summerlee reveals to the team that he does not 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. It causes Summerlee to become very disoriented and experience hallucinations; under its influence, he exits the cave and is killed by a Tyrannosaurus.
The rest of the team finds the dead body of Summerlee, which it covers with a British flag. 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 Azbek and White's vinyl record. In the same instant, a battered John Roxton reveals to Amanda White and to Challenger that the cave is full of explosives 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 and die. 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 the Eoraptors disperse, Djena is attacked and killed by the Tyrannosaurus.
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 Djena had been preparing earlier.
Returning to London, Challenger communicates the death of his companions to the students. On account of the danger present at the place, he chooses to state that the expedition found nothing, thus ensuring that no further expedition would to the plateau would be made.
In the last scenes of the film, 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: Student
- 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.