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The Island at the Top of the World (1974)

Four turn of the century explorers embark on an airship expedition to the high artic. Where upon they find a lost colony of Vikings.

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Writers:

(screenplay), (novel) (as Ian Cameron)
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Jacques Marin ...
...
...
Agneta Eckemyr ...
Gunnar Öhlund ...
The Godi (as Gunnar Ohlund)
Lasse Kolstad ...
Erik Silju ...
Torvald
Rolf Søder ...
The Lawspeaker
Torsten Wahlund ...
Sven
Sverre Anker Ousdal ...
Gunnar (as Sverre Ousdal)
Niels Hinrichsen ...
Sigurd
Denny Miller ...
Town Guard
Brendan Dillon ...
The Factor
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Storyline

A Victorian gentleman hopes to find his long-lost son, who vanished whilst searching for a mysterious Viking community in a volcanic valley somewhere in uncharted Arctic regions. The gentleman puts together an expedition team to go on the search, but when they reach their destination they must escape from some Viking descendants who will kill to keep their existence a secret. Written by Jonathon Dabell <barnabyrudge@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Adventure beyond imagination


Certificate:

G | See all certifications »
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Release Date:

20 December 1974 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

La isla del fin del mundo  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Photophone Sound Recording)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.75 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The name of the uncharted island at the top of the world in the Arctic circle was "Astragard". See more »

Goofs

The Hyperion's propellers are hand cranked men by men on the ground. When the entire ship is viewed at rest the propellers are nowhere near the ground. See more »

Quotes

Prof. Ivarsson: [They have discovered a frozen bay filled with the carcasses of many dead whales] Where the whales go to die. All those great creatures from every sea, lying there, from the beginning of time.
Sir Anthony Ross: Just look at all that whalebone! Worth millions of pounds! And heavens knows what the ambergris would fetch.
Donald Ross: All that doesn't matter now, does it, father?
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Atlantis: The Lost Empire (2001) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Enjoyable Disney adventure.
23 October 2003 | by (Todmorden, England) – See all my reviews

The Island At The Top Of The World is based on a novel by Ian Cameron entitled The Lost Ones. The novel was set in modern times, but the film is set in Edwardian times. It is one of the better live-action Disney films, with an interesting and exciting plot, solid performances and an unusual setting. Only the weak special effects give the viewer something to gripe about.

Donald Sinden is splendid as Sir Anthony Ross, an elderly London gentleman who is desperate to find out what happened to his son Donald. Apparently, young Donald went off to the Arctic several months earlier in search of a mythical place "where whales go to die", but he disappeared during the expedition. Sir Anthony refuses to believe that his son is dead, so he assembles a search party and they set off for the freezing polar ice-cap aboard a French airship. As it turns out, right up at the top of the world there exists a lost colony of Viking throwbacks, hidden from the rest of the world and able to survive because the valley in which they live is heated by volcanic materials. Young Donald has been living with these folk since his strange disappearance, but the arrival of his father's search party causes trouble and the Viking elders vote to kill the intruders.

It's every bit as unusual and fascinating as it sounds, and is a truly worthwhile film for kids and adults alike. There are a few mis-calculations (few films, after all, are perfect) but not too many. The special effects, as already suggested, are somewhat below par. Also, much of the Viking dialect is translated by David Hartman's character, and the task of listening to it in one language, then again in English, is slightly tedious. However, all things considered, this is a very enjoyable and entertaining production.


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