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Lost Horizon

( 8 )

Overview

Columbia Pictures became a major Hollywood studio with the release of Lost Horizon, so it comes as no surprise that the picture is given a very detailed and thoughtful DVD release. The source material is a bit of a hodgepodge and so is the full-screen (standard) black-and-white transfer (aspect ratio of 1.33:1). However, most of the sections are exceptionally clear. The audio is presented in Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono and the subtitles are available in English, Spanish, Portuguese, Chinese, Korean, and Thai. The ...
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DVD (Black & White / Pan & Scan)
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Overview

Columbia Pictures became a major Hollywood studio with the release of Lost Horizon, so it comes as no surprise that the picture is given a very detailed and thoughtful DVD release. The source material is a bit of a hodgepodge and so is the full-screen (standard) black-and-white transfer (aspect ratio of 1.33:1). However, most of the sections are exceptionally clear. The audio is presented in Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono and the subtitles are available in English, Spanish, Portuguese, Chinese, Korean, and Thai. The theatrical trailer is also included. The "Special Features" section has several excellent components, including "Restoration: Before and After Comparison," which goes beyond the usual showcase of amazing clean-ups and patches to include alternate opening credits for the various releases as well as deleted scenes. An alternative ending is also included. The half-hour "Photo Documentary" is narrated by film historian Kendall Miller and covers the film's major scenes, background on the casting, and insight into what has been cut from the print since its initial release. The final feature is the incredibly detailed "Restoration Audio Commentary," recorded in 1998 by Charles Champlin and Robert Gitt. It can be a little dry and repetitive at times, but overall it is invaluable. Columbia Pictures enters territory usually reserved for The Criterion Collection with this restored classic.
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Special Features

Digitally remastered audio and anamorphic video; Production notes; Interactive menus; Subtitles: English, Spanish, Portuguese, Chinese, Korean, Thai; Alternative ending; Restoration: Before and After Comparison; Three deleted scenes; Photo documentary with narration by historian Kendall Miller; Restoration commentary [1988] by film critic Charles Champlin and U.C.L.A. film restoration expert Robert Gill; Theatrical trailer; Scene selections
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Bruce Eder
Frank Capra's Lost Horizon belongs to a genre that reached its heyday in the 1930s: the philosophical drama. Usually based on plays, films such as Street Scene, Death Takes A Holiday, On Borrowed Time and The Petrified Forest dealt with driving issues of the day and embraced weighty questions of life and death. Adapted from the novel by James Hilton, Lost Horizon proved more popular and enduring than any of them, principally because the filmmaker pulled out all the stops in translating the material to the screen. It was the grandest production ever attempted by Columbia Pictures, a studio which, for all of its renown and respect, was little more than a Poverty Row outfit when financing was concerned. Aided by Dimitri Tiomkin's outsized score, Capra created an utterly convincing screen portrayal of Shangri-La, and his audience's suspension of disbelief was such that no one even thought to ask how the inhabitants of Shangri-La could have gotten their grand piano over those mountain passes. The most compelling element of the film, however -- proof of Capra's keen sense of public mood -- was its message. At the time of the movie's release, it was clear that the First World War, still very much in peoples' minds, had been fought in vain; the world was preparing to tear itself apart anew. Lost Horizon offered a notion of hope, based in fantasy, that it was essential for good men to keep themselves at the ready, to lead when the carnage ceased. In a sense, the movie was a not-so-distant cousin to a British production of the same era, Things To Come, which presented a similar idea in science-fiction terms. Capra's choices in casting were uncanny, particularly Ronald Colman as disillusioned diplomat Robert Conway and John Howard as his brother -- Howard had taken over the role of Bulldog Drummond from Colman in a series of films from the same period, and they looked enough alike that they might've been brothers.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 8/31/1999
  • UPC: 043396076396
  • Original Release: 1937
  • Rating:

  • Source: Sony Pictures
  • Region Code: 1
  • Aspect Ratio: Pre-1954 Standard (1.33.1)
  • Presentation: Black & White / Pan & Scan
  • Sound: Dolby Digital
  • Language: English
  • Time: 2:14:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 11,217

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Ronald Colman Robert Conway
Edward Everett Horton Alexander P. Lovett
H.B. Warner Chang
Jane Wyatt Sondra
Sam Jaffe High Lama
John Howard George Conway
Margo Maria
Thomas Mitchell Henry Barnard
Isabel Jewell Gloria Stone
Hugh Buckler Lord Gainsford
David Torrence Prime Minister
Beatrice Curtis
Val Duran Talu
Neil Fitzgerald
The Hall Johnson Choir
Jeremy Irons Sr. Assistant Foreign Secretary
Boyd Irwin Assistant Foreign Secretary
Milton A. Owen Fenner
Norman Ainsley
Chief John Big Tree Porter
Wryley Birch Missionary
Beatrice Blinn Passenger
John Burton Wynant
George Chan Chinese priest
David Clyde Steward
Denis D'Auburn Aviator
Mary Lou Dix Passenger
Willie Fung Bandit leader
Lawrence Grant 1st Man
Noble Johnson Leader of porters
Richard Loo Shanghai Airport official
Margaret McWade Missionary
John Miltern Carstairs
Henry Mowbray Englishman
Leonard Mudie Senior Foreign Secretary
John T. Murray Meeker
Wedgewood Nowell Englishman
Max Rabinowitz Seiveking
Ruth Robinson Missionary
Carl Stockdale Missionary
John Tettener Montaigne
Eric Wilton Englishman
Victor Wong Bandit leader
Arthur Rankin Passenger
Technical Credits
Frank Capra Director, Producer
Edward Bernds Sound Mixer
Ganahl Carson Special Effects
C.C. Coleman Asst. Director
Roy Davidson Special Effects
Ernest Dryden Costumes/Costume Designer
Stephen Goosson Production Designer
Gene Havlick Editor
Babs Johnstone Set Decoration/Design
Gene Milford Editor
Robert Riskin Screenwriter
Max Steiner Musical Direction/Supervision
Dimitri Tiomkin Score Composer
Joseph Walker Cinematographer
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Scene Index

Side #1 --
0. Scene Selections
1. Start [3:11]
2. Baskul [4:43]
3. Five Refugees [6:52]
4. Shanghaied [9:47]
5. Crash Landing [4:45]
6. Rescued [4:19]
7. Shangri-La [6:07]
8. No Contact [6:27]
9. "What is Shangri-La?" [3:59]
10. Father Perrault [6:12]
11. The Valley of the Moon [4:31]
12. Masks Removed [4:14]
13. Amazing News [2:18]
14. The High Lama [10:22]
15. "Lullaby & Goodnight" [2:03]
16. Sondra's Pigeons [10:53]
17. Waiting for the Bump [6:09]
18. "Age is a Limit." [2:29]
19. Transfer of Command [3:31]
20. "We're Leaving." [3:08]
21. Tales of Madness [9:40]
22. "He Will Return." [3:02]
23. Target Practice [1:45]
24. Avalanche [1:15]
25. The Echo Fades [4:52]
26. Found Alive [2:12]
27. Gainsford's Report [2:42]
28. Paradise Regained [1:22]
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Menu

Side #1 --
   Play Movie
   Subtitles
      English
      Spanish
      Portuguese
      Chinese
      Korean
      Thai
   Theatrical Trailer
   Special Features
      Restoration: Before and After Comparison
      Alternative Ending
      Photo Documentary with narration by historian Kendell Miller
      Restoration Audio Commentary (1998) by Charles Champlin & Robert Gitt
         On
         Off
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 8 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(6)

4 Star

(1)

3 Star

(1)

2 Star

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1 Star

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Sort by: Showing all of 8 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    A masterpiece of modern cinema

    My only complaint of this recording is that it is not complete. It has the exact ending, pieces are missing that have been replaced by photographs and the sound recording, An exhaustive search was done to reconstruct the original film. Film libraries all over the world were used to search for pieces missing that might make it whole. It doesn't lack continuity, it never breaks up the thread of the screenplay. As a matter of fact whenever a photograph is used the sound recording for that scene is intact and played accordingly. A slight annoyance for such a masterpiece of a film.
    It's an inexpensive addition to anyone's film library. The money spent is worthwhile and recommended to anyone. The message is eternal and applies to all people. Anyone who hasn't seen the film has missed out on an experience both emotional and spiritual. It implores mankind to seek the highest road and to settle for nothing short of excellence which he is capable of in every way.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 1, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Visually Magnificent, Unfortunate Undertow.

    I might have liked Lost Horizon better if I had not recently watched Things to Come. I have watched Lost Horizon several times before, but this time I took a more critical stance. However, as a spectacle in and of itself, the film is beautiful, and Capra's masterful direction is put to full use. The acting is fine, and the substitution of stills for missing footage in no way harms the finisheed product. Nevertheless, there is a disturbing message in this film, which Ronald Colman condenses in a speech about war. What if, he opines, we just lay down our arms? The other fellows would see we were unarmed, and by example lay down their arms as well. You would end up with, he implies, Shangri-La. Lost Horizon premiered two years before WWII, and in hindsight, its Chamberlain approach and attitude is chilling. There is a tacit nod toward collectivism, communism, and by fiat, pacifism instead of freedom. Enjoy the visuals, but don't succomb to the opium smokers vision. I recommend Dragon Seed.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    The Best!!

    This restored true classic is oneof the best around! The bonusinformation is not only interesting,but inspiring -- the work thatwent into it warms the heart. It'sgreat when the industry takes careof one of its own! A lot of effortwent into the research and restoration of this movie. There aredeleted scenes as well as thealternative ending, which is rarefor the period the movie was made.The story itself is one that canprovoke great conversation amonglike-minded friends. I've read thebook, also a classic, which addsmore insight into the storyline.This particular DVD is THE one toget and this picture is one thatmust go into your movie library!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Great movie!

    Even though the movie has missing film footage due to poor preservation, it still holds the same magic for me that is has since I was in high school.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    wretched remake

    The musical was not only not a 'wretched remake', but was a a big hit when it opened in the theaters. I personally loved this one almost as well as the first because it embodied all the same qualities of Hilton's novel as the first. I will admit that it had a tough time living up to the 'perfect' Chang (H. B. Warner) and the absolute perfect (he will never be replaced) Conway (Ronald Coleman). Incidentally, I liked both movies better than the book which I read twice.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 2, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted October 6, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted January 28, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 8 Customer Reviews