IMDb > Lost Horizon (1937)
Lost Horizon
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Lost Horizon (1937) More at IMDbPro »

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Lost Horizon -- A timeless masterpiece starring Ronald Colman and Jane Wyatt in the lavishly-produced vision of Shangri-La.

Overview

User Rating:
7.8/10   9,290 votes »
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Popularity: ?
Up 8% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Director:
Writers:
Robert Riskin (screenplay)
James Hilton (novel)
(more)
Contact:
View company contact information for Lost Horizon on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
1 September 1937 (USA) See more »
Tagline:
Frank Capra's Mightiest Production See more »
Plot:
A plane crash delivers a group of people to the secluded land of Shangri-La -- but is it the miraculous utopia it appears to be? Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Awards:
Won 2 Oscars. Another 5 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
Colman of Tibet: An attempted key to "LOST HORIZON" See more (119 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Ronald Colman ... Robert Conway

Jane Wyatt ... Sondra

Edward Everett Horton ... Lovett

John Howard ... George Conway

Thomas Mitchell ... Barnard

Margo ... Maria

Isabel Jewell ... Gloria

H.B. Warner ... Chang

Sam Jaffe ... High Lama
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Norman Ainsley ... Embassy Club Steward (uncredited)

Chief John Big Tree ... Porter (uncredited)
Wyrley Birch ... Missionary (uncredited)
Beatrice Blinn ... Passenger (uncredited)
Hugh Buckler ... Lord Gainsford (uncredited)
Sonny Bupp ... Boy Being Carried to Plane (unconfirmed) (uncredited)
John Burton ... Wynant (uncredited)
Tom Campbell ... Porter (uncredited)
Matthew Carlton ... Pottery Maker (uncredited)
Eli Casey ... Porter (uncredited)
David Cavendish ... First Pilot (uncredited)
George Chan ... Chinese Priest (uncredited)
Darby Clark ... Radio Operator (uncredited)
David Clyde ... Embassy Club Steward (uncredited)
Robert Cory ... Englishman (uncredited)
Beatrice Curtis ... Passenger (uncredited)
Jack Deery ... Englishman (uncredited)
Mary Lou Dix ... Passenger (uncredited)
White Dove ... Minor Role (uncredited)
Val Duran ... Talu - Hijacking Pilot (uncredited)
Neil Fitzgerald ... Radio Operator (uncredited)
Willie Fung ... Bandit Leader at Fuel Stop-over (uncredited)
Moning Gonzales ... Porter (uncredited)

Lawrence Grant ... First Man (uncredited)
Antonion Herrera ... Porter (uncredited)
Joe Herrera ... Candle Maker (uncredited)
Glenn Howard ... Porter (uncredited)
Boyd Irwin ... Assistant Foreign Secretary (uncredited)
Noble Johnson ... Leader of Porters on Return Journey (uncredited)
Manual Kalili ... Servant (uncredited)
George Kaluna ... Porter (uncredited)
Harold Lishman ... Porter (uncredited)

Richard Loo ... Shanghai Airport Official (uncredited)
Robert Lugo ... Porter (uncredited)
Richard Master ... Servant (uncredited)
Margaret McWade ... Missionary (uncredited)
John Miltern ... Carstairs - Man at Club (uncredited)
Ray Mitchell ... Undetermined Role (uncredited)
Joe Molina ... Porter (uncredited)
Henry Mowbray ... Englishman (uncredited)
Leonard Mudie ... Foreign Secretary with Prime Minister (uncredited)
John T. Murray ... Meeker (uncredited)
Wedgwood Nowell ... Englishman (uncredited)
Milton Owen ... Fenner (uncredited)
Arthur Rankin ... Passenger (uncredited)
Ruth Robinson ... Missionary (uncredited)
Richard Robles ... Porter (uncredited)
Alex Shoulder ... Servant (uncredited)
Joe Shoulder ... Porter (uncredited)
James Smith ... Porter (uncredited)

Carl Stockdale ... Missionary (uncredited)
John Tettener ... Montaigne (uncredited)
Ed Thorpe ... Porter (uncredited)
David Torrence ... Prime Minister (uncredited)
Eric Wilton ... Englishman (uncredited)
Barry Winton ... Englishman (uncredited)
Victor Wong ... Bandit Leader (uncredited)
Ernesto Zambrano ... Servant (uncredited)

Directed by
Frank Capra 
 
Writing credits
Robert Riskin (screenplay)

James Hilton (novel)

Sidney Buchman  contributor to screenplay (uncredited)

Produced by
Frank Capra .... producer (uncredited)
Harry Cohn .... executive producer (uncredited)
 
Original Music by
Dimitri Tiomkin 
 
Cinematography by
Joseph Walker (photography)
 
Film Editing by
Gene Havlick 
Gene Milford 
 
Art Direction by
Stephen Goosson  (as Stephen Goossón)
 
Set Decoration by
Babs Johnstone (interior decorator) (uncredited)
 
Makeup Department
Jack Dawn .... makeup artist (uncredited)
Rhoda Donaldson .... hairdresser (uncredited)
Charles Huber .... makeup artist (uncredited)
Helen Hunt .... hair stylist (uncredited)
John Wallace .... makeup artist (uncredited)
 
Production Management
Sidney W. Pink .... assistant production manager (uncredited)
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Arthur S. Black Jr. .... assistant director (uncredited)
Milton Carter .... assistant director (uncredited)
Charles C. Coleman .... assistant director (uncredited)
Robert Farfan .... assistant director (uncredited)
Andrew Marton .... assistant director (uncredited)
 
Art Department
Fay Babcock .... set dresser (uncredited)
Lionel Banks .... assistant art director (uncredited)
Ted Dickson .... set dresser (uncredited)
Paul Murphy .... assistant art director (uncredited)
Cary Odell .... set sketcher (uncredited)
Jim Pratt .... construction foreman (uncredited)
Jack Wrenn .... property master (uncredited)
 
Sound Department
Edward Bernds .... sound engineer (uncredited)
Irving 'Buster' Libbott .... microphone operator (uncredited)
 
Special Effects by
Ganahl Carson .... special camera effects
Roy Davidson .... special camera effects (as E. Roy Davidson)
Harry Redmond Jr. .... special effects (uncredited)
 
Stunts
Buddy Roosevelt .... stunt double: Ronald Colman (uncredited)
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Elmer Dyer .... aerial photography
Roy Babbitt .... assistant camera (uncredited)
Schuyler Crail .... still photographer (uncredited)
Henry Freulich .... additional photography (uncredited)
George Hager .... gaffer (uncredited)
William Jolley .... assistant camera (uncredited)
Alfred S. Keller .... camera operator (uncredited)
George F. Kelley .... camera operator (uncredited)
Irving Klein .... assistant camera (uncredited)
Al Layter .... best boy (uncredited)
Irving Lippman .... still photographer (uncredited)
James Lloyd .... key grip (uncredited)
Sam Rosen .... assistant camera (uncredited)
Victor Scheurich .... camera operator (uncredited)
Rod Tolmie .... assistant camera: aerial unit (uncredited)
Alfredo Valente .... still photographer (uncredited)
 
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Ernest Dryden .... costumes (as Ernst Dryden)
William Bridgehouse .... wardrobe (uncredited)
Dan Grossbeck .... costume illustrator (uncredited)
Daisy Jefferson .... wardrobe (uncredited)
Eugene Joseff .... costume jeweller (uncredited)
 
Music Department
Max Steiner .... musical director
Robert Russell Bennett .... orchestrator (uncredited)
Peter Brunelli .... orchestrator (uncredited)
Hugo Friedhofer .... orchestrator (uncredited)
Jester Hairston .... choral director (uncredited)
Herman Hand .... orchestrator (uncredited)
Howard Jackson .... composer: stock music (uncredited)
Hall Johnson .... choral arranger (uncredited)
Bernhard Kaun .... orchestrator (uncredited)
Charles Maxwell .... orchestrator (uncredited)
George Parrish .... orchestrator (uncredited)
Max Rabinowitz .... music consultant (uncredited)
Max Reese .... orchestrator (uncredited)
William Grant Still .... orchestrator (uncredited)
Morris Stoloff .... musical director (uncredited)
John Tettener .... music consultant (uncredited)
 
Other crew
Hall Johnson Choir .... voices
Harry Cohn .... president: Columbia Pictures Corp. of Calif. Ltd.
Harrison Forman .... technical adviser
Archie Beckingsale .... bird trainer (uncredited)
Hyatt Daab .... press representative (uncredited)
Charles J. DeSoria .... dog trainer (uncredited)
Regis Gubser .... engineer: ice house (uncredited)
Al 'Doc' Guyer .... first aid (uncredited)
Eleanor Hall .... script clerk (uncredited)
Rennie Renfro .... dog trainer (uncredited)
Buddy Roosevelt .... double: Ronald Colman (uncredited)
Mary Wiggins .... double: Jane Wyatt (uncredited)
Harold Winston .... dialogue director (uncredited)
 
Thanks
Jeanine Basinger .... special thanks (1985 restoration)
Frank Capra .... special thanks (1985 restoration) (as Mr. Frank Capra)
Irwin Danels .... special thanks (1985 restoration)
Dennis Doph .... special thanks (1985 restoration)
Joseph G. Empsucha .... special thanks (1985 restoration)
Stephen Gong .... special thanks (1985 restoration)
Felipe Herba .... special thanks (1985 restoration)
Lawrence F. Karr .... special thanks (1985 restoration)
Audrey E. Kupferberg .... special thanks (1985 restoration)
David Parker .... special thanks (1985 restoration)
Robert Rosen .... special thanks (1985 restoration)
Irwin Rosenfeld .... special thanks (1985 restoration)
Ralph Sargent .... special thanks (1985 restoration)
Anne G. Schlosser .... special thanks (1985 restoration)
Paul C. Spehr .... special thanks (1985 restoration)
Nick Vasu .... special thanks (1985 restoration)
 
Crew believed to be complete


Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Lost Horizon of Shangri-La" - USA (reissue title)
See more »
Runtime:
132 min (original version) | USA:95 min (TV version) | USA:118 min (general release version) | West Germany:97 min | 132 min (restored version)
Country:
Language:
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Western Electric Noiseless Recording)
Certification:
Argentina:Atp | Australia:PG | Finland:K-16 | Netherlands:14 (original rating) (1937) | Norway:7 (original rating) | Portugal:M/12 | Sweden:15 | UK:U (original rating) (passed with cuts) | UK:U (tv rating) | UK:U (video rating) (1989) (2000) | USA:Unrated | USA:Approved (PCA #2061) | West Germany:12

Did You Know?

Trivia:
A scene from this movie is adapted into a dream sequence for the Opus and Bill Christmas movie -A Wish For Rings That WorkSee more »
Goofs:
Continuity: When Conway is stumbling down the mountain and approaching the native village, his hair and clothing don't match in closeup and distant shots.See more »
Quotes:
[first lines]
Book Pages:In these days of wars and rumors of wars - haven't you ever dreamed of a place where there was peace and security, where living was not a struggle but a lasting delight? / Of course you have. So has every man since time began. Always the same dream. Sometimes he calls it Utopia - Sometimes the Fountain of Youth - Sometimes merely "that little chicken farm." / One man had such a dream and saw it come true...
See more »
Movie Connections:
Soundtrack:
Here We Go Gathering Nuts in MaySee more »

FAQ

Is the version usually seen faithful to the director's intentions?
See more »
49 out of 53 people found the following review useful.
Colman of Tibet: An attempted key to "LOST HORIZON", 9 October 2005
Author: theowinthrop from United States

Along with A TALE OF TWO CITIES, THE PRISONER OF ZENDA, and THE LIGHT THAT FAILED, LOST HORIZON represented the best performance possible out of Ronald Colman. And his Robert Conway is the most modern of them (up to the time the films were made). LOST HORIZON is set (as James Hilton intended) in the 1930s, in war torn China. It is not the only reference in the story to the 1930s that Hilton puts into his fable of a paradise on earth.

Hilton had reason to fear about the world he lived in. The Great War (as the First World War was generally called in the 1930s) was still a savage and recent nightmare. The 1920s and 1930s saw dictatorships seize control of European and Asian state, and Democracy retreating everywhere. "Look at the world", says the High Lama (Sam Jaffe), "Is anything worse?" The High Lama is correct - the world is collapsing, and the so-called panaceas (Communist Russia, Nazi Germany, Fascist Italy and Spain, Imperial Japan and it's "Greater Asiatic Co-Prosperity Sphere") are worse than the seeming ineptitude and drift in badly divided France, weakened Britain, and recovering American.

Hilton took Conway, his brother George, Professor Edward Everett Horton, suspiciously quiet businessman Thomas Mitchell, and consumptive Isabel Elsom to an oasis (possibly the oasis) on that troubled old earth - Shangri La, or "the valley of the Blue Moon") where contentment and peace reigned and people could live, if not forever, far longer and more happily than in say 1937 Germany, Britain, France, Russia, Italy, the U.S., or Japan.

On the whole Capra catches the spirit of the novel - his sets were dismissed as being far to simplistic, but as simplicity is the hallmark of life at Shangri-La the critics seemed to miss the point. As a matter of fact, his sets (in a temperate valley in the Himalayas - a real impossibility) are more acceptable than the idiocies of the future world in the contemporary science fiction film THINGS TO COME, where H.G.Wells believes we should live in cities built in caves.

The acting is very good, particularly Sam Jaffe's ancient High Lama (always shot in shadows). Remember, he is over two hundred years old. Today, because Jaffe had a long career in Hollywood (despite being blacklisted in the 1950s), we think of him as an old man in THE ASPHALT JUNGLE or as "Dr. Zorba" in the series BEN CASEY. So we think he must have looked old in real life when LOST HORIZON was shot. Actually, he was in his thirties or forties, so he was not that old. But he gave a performance that suggested he was an old man.

Another member of the cast that I would wish to bring up for consideration is John Howard. He is not recalled by film fans too much, but Mr. Howard was a good, competent actor. That he played Hugh "Bulldog" Drummond in a series of "B" features in the late thirties makes it ironic that he played the younger brother of Ronald Colman here, who had begun the talking picture segment of his career with the same role. Howard does not have a British accent, but he does show the adoration of the younger brother for his famous sibling, and the growing anger and contempt he develops when brother Robert fails to plan for their leaving this prison they were dragged to - note how he wants to return with a bomber to destroy Shangri-La. It is one of the two roles in major films that John Howard is remembered for, the other being "George Kittridge", the erstwhile fiancé of Tracy Lord (Katherine Hepburn) in THE PHILADELPHIA STORY, who is pushed aside by both Cary Grant and James Stewart.

As it is one of Howard's best roles, it is nice that when the film was restored (as well as possible) in the 1980s, Howard (one of the three surviving cast members) was able to appreciate it - many of the missing sequences were his scenes. Howard was very happy at the restoration result.

Now, one or two notes that may help appreciate the film a little more. Who is Robert Conway supposed to be? He is called, by the High Lama, "Conway, the empire builder." He is supposedly able to do impossible things - hence the admiration of his brother. When he returns to Shangri-La at the end, the comment of the man telling the story is that Conway's journeys by himself back to his valley was beyond what ordinary men could do. So who is Conway? Well, in 1937, the model for Robert Conway was dead, from a motorcycle accident, for two years. It was, of course, Thomas Edward Lawrence "of Arabia", who had never been in Tibet (officially, anyway) but had served time in the Indian subcontinent area on government business in the 1920s. Quite a model for an empire builder.

The character played by Thomas Mitchell is also based on a real person. Harry Barnard's real name (which I have forgotten) is that of an international financier whose vast empire collapsed ruining thousands of investors. It turns out Mitchell's character is based on Samuel Insull, a mid western utilities empire builder (out of Chicago) whose financial doings brought about his collapse in the Great Depression. Insull fled in disguise to Greece, but was found on a dirty freighter, and returned to the U.S. (where he would stand trial for fraud, but be acquitted). Edward Everett Horton's anger at Mitchell when he learned the latter's identity is understandable. Mitchell's involvement in installing new pipes in Shangri-La mirrors Insull's early days, when he was an electrician, and an assistant to Thomas Edison.

The use of these two real figures as the basis of the characters helped contemporary audiences to accept the background of the plot of the film.

Was the above review useful to you?
See more (119 total) »

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We need a remake deadparrotsoc
The truth about the cuts from the mouth of Frank Capra: KartofflMuter
What is the deal with Maria? Rizzyay
all dead phil-loughborough
I'm thinking an uncut copy of this film is in someone's attic somewhere. Vega_Lyra
One of the finest films of all time. scscott45
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