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The Land that Time Forgot
Caprona - Das Vergessene Land

UK/USA 1975
produced by
John Dark, Samuel Z. Arkoff, Max J. Rosenberg (co), Milton Subotsky (co) for Amicus, Land Associates, AIP
directed by Kevin Connor
starring Doug McClure, John McEnery, Susan Penhaligon, Keith Barron, Anthony Ainley, Godfrey James, Bobby Parr, Declan Mulholland, Colin Farrell, Ben Howard, Roy Holder, Andrew McCulloch, Ron Pember, Grahame Mallard, Andrew Lodge, Brian Hall, Stanley McGeagh, Peter Sproule, Steve James
screenplay by James Cawthorn, Michael Moorcock, based on a novel by Edgar Rice Burroughs, music by Douglas Gamley, special effects by Derek Meddings


review by
Mike Haberfelner

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The Atlantic Ocean, 1916: A German submarine manages to blow up a British freighter, but in return the surviving crew of the freighter manages to enter and take over the submarine. At first there's much fighting between the German crew, led by Captain Von Schoenvorts (John McEnery), the British crew led by Captain Bradley (Keith Barron), and the American observer Commander Tyler (Doug McClure) - don't ask me why he was thrown into the mix -, but soon everybody realizes they are lost on high sea, and when they start working together, Cap Von Schoenvorts turns out to be quite a nice and sensitive bloke, more interested in natural science than in waging wars.

Eventually the ship finds its way to an uncharted island that seems unaccessible from the outside ... but the sub finds a cave leading to a lake on the inside, and while on the outside the island looked like an ice-covered desert, our motley crew is quite surprised to find lush vegetation and even some animals ... that and dinosaurs and cavemen.

Soon Captain Schoenvorts and natural scientist Lisa (Susan Penhaligon) find out that on this island, all the stages of evolution are present at the same time, even the cavemen are not all on the same evolutionary stage. And Ahm (Bobby Parr), a cavemen our heroes have captured, but who soon befriended them, claims - in his caveman lingo - that all the cavemen here live through all the evolutionary stages in one single lifetime.

Eventually, Tyler, Von Schoenvorts and Lisa mount an expedition to the source of the islands biggest river ... and find what they think the source of all life on this island (though it's never quite clear why).

But scientific accomplishments as such don't come without tragedies, at least not in films like this one. Soon enough, while Tyler and Lisa are out hunting and almost fall prey to a caveman tribe, the underwater volcano on which the island sits starts to spit lava ... and suddenly Von Schoenvorts' second in command Dietz (Anthony Ainley) wants to make a getaway right away, and if he has to leave Tyler and Lisa behind, all the better ... and to accomplish his evil goal, he even starts a successful mutiny against Cap Von Schoenvorts. But there's one thing that he hasn't taken into account: the heat of the volcanic activity has heated up the water quite a bit, so first the submarine crew gets cooked inside the vessel, then the ship blows up ... and all of a sudden Tyler and Lisa, the people Dietz wanted to leave to die, are the only two survivors ...


Now let me get this straight, all the Amicus Lost Civilisation/Continent-films (also At the Earth's Core, The People that Time Forgot) are rather weak, with badly done dinosaur effects, and Doug McClure, one of the more annoying B-movie heroes of the time, and this one is no exception: The script is incredibly silly, with plotholes aplenty, the direction does little to create proper tension, and as usual, both the dinosaurs and Doug McClure are less than convincing ... yet somehow I find myself liking the film for exactly these inconsistencies, and I will watch (and like) more films of the same ilk ...


review © by Mike Haberfelner


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On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide


A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD



Stell Dir vor, Deine Lieblingsseifenoper birgt eine tiefere Wahrheit ...
... und stell Dir vor, der Penner von der U-Bahnstation hat doch recht ...
... und dann triffst Du auch noch die Frau Deiner (feuchten) Träume ...


Und an diesem Tag geht natürlich wieder einmal die Welt unter!!!


Bauliche Angelegenheiten
ein Roman von
Michael Haberfelner


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