3 February 2006 | cereneau
Unfortunately, the most faithful adaptation of the book
I picked up this DVD in the $1.00 bin at a department store, having been a fan of the novel. It's only around 45 minutes long and it definitely strays from the book, partly to make it more accessible to children. However, despite these differences, this forgettable piece of animation remains the most faithful adaptation of H. Rider Haggard's original work. This is the only version, that I know of (or that is listed on IMDb.com) that has the characters of both Sir Henry Curtis and Captain John Good. Unfortunately, all contemporary film versions of this story replace Curtis' character (and sometimes Good's character)with a female actress. This totally throws off the dynamic of the original work and, though entertaining, the audience really loses a feel for why this novel was so great in the first place.
For being fairly accurate in it's adaptation of H. Rider Haggard's Novel, this film gets 2 stars. Unfortunately, everything else in the movie is pretty unbearable (thus warranting the $1 bin). The voice-dubbing (as was typical with old animation) is pretty raw. The plot is pretty focused and therefore doesn't really flesh out the characters or the relationships between them. But it is a good short adventure cartoon for kids and should be viewed as such. The kids should like it!