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The City of Lost Children (1995)
"La cité des enfants perdus" (original title)

R  |   |  Fantasy, Sci-Fi  |  15 December 1995 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.7/10 from 53,653 users   Metascore: 73/100
Reviews: 235 user | 71 critic | 16 from Metacritic.com

A scientist in a surrealist society kidnaps children to steal their dreams, hoping that they slow his aging process.

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2 wins & 11 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Daniel Emilfork ...
Judith Vittet ...
Geneviève Brunet ...
Odile Mallet ...
Mireille Mossé ...
Serge Merlin ...
Joseph Lucien ...
Mapi Galán ...
Briac Barthélémy ...
Pierre-Quentin Faesch ...


Krank (Daniel Emilfork), who cannot dream, kidnaps young children to steal their dreams. One (Ron Perlman), a former whale hunter who is as strong as a horse, sets forth to search for Denree, his little brother who was kidnapped by Krank's men. Helped by young Miette (Judith Vittet), he soon arrives in La Cite des Enfants Perdus (The City of Lost Children). Written by Marie-Andree Poisson

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

children | dream | aging | girl | rescue | See All (72) »


Where happily ever after is just a dream. See more »


Fantasy | Sci-Fi

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for disturbing and grotesque images of violence and menace | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:




| |



Release Date:

15 December 1995 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The City of Lost Children  »

Box Office


$18,000,000 (estimated)


$1,513,028 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The Octopus are conjoined twins joined at the leg, but the actresses who played them are not. A prosthetic third leg was designed and fitted to the actresses, but they could not walk while wearing it. This is why the Octopus sisters do not walk in any shot of their whole body. See more »


The words from The Original that Miette remembers in flashback (after she receives Uncle Irvin's dream message) differ slightly from what The Original actually said, although the point of the message is still the same. See more »


Clone: C'est moi l'original! C'est moi!
See more »


Referenced in Hostel (2005) See more »


Petit Papa Noël
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Actually, quite good!
3 September 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

The first time I saw this movie I shook my head and wondered why I wasted three dollars renting this movie. It seemed to me that the storyline was worthless. However, I gave this movie a second chance, and this time instead of constantly reading the subtitles I paid more attention to the acting and events taking place on-screen.

I was shocked. The amount of creativity and symbolism blew me away. A lot of questions I had accumulated throughout my first viewing were answered by watching the movie carefully.

I recommend to everyone who thought this a poor movie to watch it again. If you don't speak French (like myself) try not to get so involved in the subtitles that you miss critical detail. It's there, and it's important, trust me!

10 of 11 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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This film. It is INCREDIBLE! (first time watcher) 8paul
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