Lost Horizon - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Lost Horizon Reviews

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March 29, 2013
Seeing it again, after 76 years (yes, this octogenarian writer is 83), the restored film is still unquestionably quite remarkable. Of course, Hilton's fantasy/utopia is framed on the literary theme that a disparate group of travelers thrown together have unusual experiences together and separately. Remember Chaucer, for example? Hilton's novel allows the reader breathing space to visualize at will the characters and settings. Translating the novel into the film medium proved frustrating for Capra and all concerned. --However, today's audiences should not quickly dismiss it as old-fashioned schlock. In spite of what might be considered heavy-handed and obvious bits of dialogue, the quest for a civilized, peaceful existence is movingly presented. Surely it remains one of the best products of Hollywood and thanks to Capra it went on to be of interest globally. The struggle was definitely worth it.
March 23, 2013
A simple look at the fundamentals of human goals and accomplishments. A group of British men and an American woman find themselves in the lost paradise of Shangri-La. The beautiful paradise changes each one of them, except for a select few who would rather try to escape and view it as a prison. It has an ambiguous but fitting ending with a nice theme of human happiness and perspective.
February 3, 2013
Struggles a bit with pacing but there are a number of good performances and the production design is gorgeous.
½ December 29, 2012
An epic near-masterpiece, both groundbreaking and relentless in it's vision. Superbly acted, wonderfully created and brought to the screen thanks to the bravery of Frank Capra and the writing of Riskin and Hilton. A phenomenal result for the 1930's.
November 27, 2012
Enjoyable fantastical tale from Frank Capra, master of the optimism on film. I just wish it had survived to this day completely intact.
½ October 23, 2012
Great. What inspiration and hope this must have given in the post depression years. Very much a Capra feel good movie and that is exactly how it left me feeling.
½ September 29, 2012
Capra's classic romantic fantasy has lost a little of its gleam in the intervening years but as a piece of humanistic escapism, it still leaves an impression.
½ June 16, 2012
A true classic. They tried to remake it once but it stunk like a porta-potty in August. One of the great films of the Golden Age.
May 29, 2012
After modestly produced but immensely successful dramas like "It Happened One Night" and "Mr. Deeds Goes to Town", Frank Capra's ambitious, large-scale adaptation of the James Hilton novel "Lost Horizon" proved a consequential artistic risk that thankfully was not without reward. The first act - wherein a group of airplane passengers are flown deep into the Himalayas by a mysterious kidnapper - is dominated by intrigue, a mood not often associated with Capra's brand, but it really works well here. They are seemingly rescued from the wreckage of their crashed plan and led back to the idyllic mountain city of Shangri-La, a magnificently constructed environment that brought production designer Stephen Goosson a well deserved Academy Award. The second act, without a strong central conflict, feels like a long one to sit through, but brings up thought-provoking questions about perceptions of paradise and the hollowness or fullness of one's existence.
½ April 28, 2012
Frank Capra creates a great classic film about the idea of utopia.
½ April 14, 2012
A lost Frank Capra fantasy adventure about Shangri-la and it's pretty awesome. Ronald Colman leads the cast.
March 26, 2012
Frank Capra directs this fantasy-adventure of a group of English refugees fleeing an uprising in China. The plane is commandeered, crashing deep into unexplored Tibet. The passengers are led to a fantastic city cradled in a valley - it truly seems to be the legendary Shangi-La, where the citizens live in peace. Unfortunately, the middle section bogs down, consisting mainly of the characters viewing the splendor and struggling to believe that it's true. There's no real conflict until the final third, when Robert Conway (Ronald Coleman) has to choose whether or not to leave. The overall story is affecting, heartfelt and sincere, and while I'm glad I saw the longest version possible, I understand why subsequent releases were shorter and shorter.
January 15, 2012
One of my favourite all time movies, great characters, great script and great visuals. It is important to see the restored version as much of its pacifist message was edited out during the second world war. Ronald Coleman in one of his finest roles, a film on a grand scale with messages of hope for all. Timeless.
December 2, 2011
One can dream......Ah that voice of Colman's. Chang is played by the actor who portrayed Christ in 1927's silent King Of Kings, H B Warner.
November 29, 2011
So bizarre and different it's a little piece of heaven.... Strangely relevant today.
October 10, 2011
A true classic, even as I now realize in the shorter version. I look forward to viewing the original.
September 6, 2011
Outstanding classic movie. Capra does an incredible job coveying a feeling of well being through film. Plus they use a clip from the plane scene in the Opus and Bill Christmas movie, "A Wish For Wings That Work", so that is awesome too.
½ August 15, 2011
When originally released this film was over 3 hours long, and opened to disastrous reviews. Took Capra over 2 years to make, and then was shortened and chopped to versions 95 to 120 minutes long. The "restored version" tries to keep intact as much as the original, and still seems lengthy, in this odd but intriguing film. Idealistic in its presentation, falls just short of being a classic.
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