29 December 2005 | Theo Robertson
Very Enjoyable Despite The Flaws
When I was a young boy of eight years old I saw this at my my local cinema . In those days it cost 15 pence ( A fair amount of money for an eight year old child ) to get in . I actually saw it two or three times which eat up my pocket money bit I certainly thought it was money well spent since in those days I enjoyed war films and monster films . Yesterday morning Channel 4 broadcast it at 6 am which seems a ridiculous time to broadcast anything never mind a fondly remembered fantasy adventure movie but I looked forward to seeing it again if only to see how well it stands up as entertainment today . Would my cherished memories be hurt ? Do I have nice memories about THE LAND THAT TIME FORGOT simply down to nostalgia ?
To be honest I think the answer is a resounding no . Right from the opening title sequence where Douglas Gamley's score sums up the downbeat feature of the story we the audience are treated to a fantasy adventure that is a little bit different . You could point out the first half of the movie is somewhat repetitive as the Germans and Brits get one over on one another but in amongst all this is some serious debate on wartime morality , allied civilian ships carrying weapons of war for example which shows no one has a monopoly on self righteousness when the battle lines are drawn and the theories of Nietzsche are also touched upon . What'd you mean this is a childish film ?
No doubt the people who watched this at the cinema on its release where more interested in prehistoric monsters than 19th century philosophy and it's not till half way through that the U-boat reaches the ancient island of Caprona which is inhabited by rubber dinosaurs and troglodytes . Yeah okay the monsters especially the pterodactyls are not very convincing but I've seen worse . It's also interesting to that this part of the movie replaces Nietzsche with Darwinisnm and I don't know if it's deliberate but this concept fits in perfectly well with the sequel THE PEOPLE THAT TIME FORGOT . How many times have you seen a sequel that almost contradicts the original movie ? This makes THE LAND THAT TIME FORGOT something of a stand out movie alongside the very pessimistic final act
I fail to see how anyone can actively dislike this movie . I agree that the special effects are far from brilliant but look beyond the FX and you'll see a very intelligent piece of fantasy adventure . The very fact that it has a sense of wonder and a truly haunting ending sets it apart from many other movies of its ilk like WARLORDS OF ATLANTIS and AT THE EARTHS CORE and nostalgia or not I certainly enjoyed seeing it again