Friday, March 9, 2012

THE LOST WORLD / First National Pictures - 1925

It's Friday with Tabonga, here at The Dungeon!.. We're using the wayback machine for this one, to go all the way back to 1925, 87 years ago, and, mum's the word! This is the first film adaptation of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's classic novel about a land where prehistoric creatures still exist. Eegah!! and I saw Irwin Allen's version at the theater when it came out in 1960.

In this film, the explorer, Professor Challenger, claims that living dinosaurs exist in the far reaches of the Amazon. A newspaper funds an expedition, and, the group goes off to South America where they do find a plateau inhabited by pre-historic creatures, and, they even manage to bring one of them back to London with them when they return from the adventure.

A beautiful scene in the museum displaying some dino bones.

Bottom pic shows a drawing in the journal obtained from a previous expedition.

The great Wallace Beery plays the bearded Professor Challenger.

Mexican born Marcel Delgado created the model sets. His 9 visual effects credits include CREATION, KING KONG, THE LAST DAYS OF POMPEII, THE WAR OF THE WORLDS, 20,000 LEAGUES UNDER THE SEA, DINOSAURUS!, IT'S A MAD MAD MAD MAD WORLD and FANTASTIC VOYAGE!

Once they reach the plateau, they find all kinds of prehistoric life thriving there! Bull Montana plays the Ape-Man.

Okay, bring in the dinosaurs!

This was already Willis O'Brien's sixth animation project, his first was in 1915 with THE DINOSAUR AND THE MISSING LINK: A PREHISTORIC TRAGEDY and the last in 1957 for THE BLACK SCORPION, another teriffic fifties monster flick that I was lucky enough to catch at the theater when it came out.

One of the most terrifying parts is where the Ape-Man makes the rope ladder the guy's on start swinging from side to side, he really has to hold on as he crashes into the rocky crags!

On their way back to civilization, the group comes across this Bronto stuck in the mud, so, they decide to capture it and take it back to London with them!

At the conference, Professor Challenger finds out that his dinosaur has broken out of it's cage and escaped.

Like a big lost dog, the critter curiously roams around the streets.

After creating a stir in the city, the Brontosaurus causes London Bridge to fall down! The thing then swims away into the night...

What a beautiful print ad! Sorry, but, crap nowadays just doesn't compare!..


Douglas McEwan said...

Sorry, but that is Tower Bridge, not London Bridge.

TABONGA! said...

Aw, heck!

Christopher said...

..and thats how the loch ness monster was born..

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