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Lost Horizon (1973)

While escaping war-torn China, a group of Europeans crash in the Himalayas, where they are rescued and taken to the mysterious Valley of the Blue Moon, Shangri-La. Hidden from the rest of ... See full summary »

Director:

Charles Jarrott

Writers:

Larry Kramer (screenplay), James Hilton (original novel)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Peter Finch ... Richard Conway
Liv Ullmann ... Catherine
Sally Kellerman ... Sally Hughes
George Kennedy ... Sam Cornelius
Michael York ... George Conway
Olivia Hussey ... Maria
Bobby Van ... Harry Lovett
James Shigeta ... Brother To-Lenn
Charles Boyer ... The High Lama
John Gielgud ... Chang
Kent Smith ... Bill Fergunson
John Van Dreelen ... Dr. Verden
Larry Duran ... Asian Pilot
Miiko Taka ... Nurse
Tybee Brascia Tybee Brascia ... Dancer
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Storyline

While escaping war-torn China, a group of Europeans crash in the Himalayas, where they are rescued and taken to the mysterious Valley of the Blue Moon, Shangri-La. Hidden from the rest of the world, Shangri-La is a haven of peace and tranquility for world-weary diplomat Richard Conway. His ambitious brother, George, sees it as a prison from which he must escape, even if it means risking his life and bringing destruction to the ancient culture of Shangri-La. Written by Marg Baskin <marg@asd.raytheon.ca>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

At Last - A Picture for Everyone! See more »


Certificate:

G | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | French

Release Date:

17 March 1973 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Horizonte Perdido See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$12,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$3,000,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

(original) | (general release)

Sound Mix:

70 mm 6-Track (70 mm prints)| Mono (35 mm prints)

Color:

Color (Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This was Producer Ross Hunter's first movie for Columbia Pictures after producing a string of hits for Universal Pictures over twenty years, including Imitation of Life (1959), Madame X (1966), and Airport (1970). After its huge commercial failure, it was his last. See more »

Goofs

The library at Shangri-La is supposed to be a repository for the world's great literature. A number of "Readers Digest Condensed Books" on its shelves. See more »

Quotes

Catherine: You've always been a part of Shangri-la without knowing it. I'm certain there's a wish for Shangri-la in everyone's heart.
See more »

Alternate Versions

"Lost Horizon" was cut by 23 minutes after its theatrical release. The deleted footage consisted of three songs: "I Come To You", "If I Could Go Back", and "Where Knowledge Ends, Faith Begins"; plus two reprises of "Living Together, Growing Together" were cut, and a fertility dance sequence was also edited out.Pioneer reinstated the three songs for a 1992 Laserdisc release while the remaining footage was restored for the 2011 DVD version. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Film Night: Episode dated 23 March 1973 (1973) See more »

Soundtracks

Lost Horizon
Written by Burt Bacharach and Hal David
Performed by Shawn Phillips
See more »

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User Reviews

 
What "so bad it's good" really means!
15 July 2005 | by laszlo-11See all my reviews

Usually when a film is hailed as the above description, it has to be considered watchable enough to enjoy the film's ineptitude. Some films like this are bad, but to watch them would be asking a whole lot of the viewer. LOST HORIZON certainly does not fit that last description because while CITIZEN KANE it is not, it certainly does not deserve to be trashed.

By the time LOST HORIZON came along, the movie musical was already considered a dead genre, save for the occasional import from Broadway that actually turned out well (OLIVER! & CABARET come immediately to mind). However, the age of the musical where songs were written especially for the movie had long been buried. That did not matter to producer Ross Hunter, who always was a safeguard of Old Hollywood even after the advent of the MPAA allowed for movies to be made of subjects that the studios would not have touched with a ten-foot pole. Hunter may have succeeded in bringing back old-fashioned soap operas with the Douglas Sirk movies, but as THOROUGHLY MODERN MILLIE showed with its original songs that paled in comparison to the classics it stood alongside (well, almost), the musical was perhaps not a genre in need of a revival.

You certainly could have fooled Hunter, who went full-steam ahead with his musicalization of a property that should have been left alone to begin with. Casting actors with little to no musical training & badly dubbing them was bad enough, but choosing a project that worked best in its original format was double trouble. That is certainly not to fault Burt Bacharach & Hal David's music, which is fine enough, though certainly not up to par with their Dionne Warwick spectaculars. But you get the idea that maybe even they were doubtful of this project's bankability. Supposedly the film led to the break-up of their previously infallible partnership, as well as Hunter's film career (he mostly worked for TV afterwards).

Apparently, Hollywood likes to keep its megaflops very secret because LOST HORIZON has not been seen much since its theatrical debut, and has not even made it onto VHS, let alone DVD in the U.S. (I found my copy courtesy of eBay). But if even Ed Wood's hilariously bad movies can be released & enjoyed by people even for all the wrong reasons, then certainly LOST HORIZON can. So I hope that Columbia Pictures can find it in their hearts to bring this movie back into circulation so we can enjoy it (even genuinely because it appears some people actually did). Heck, if only for the camp value, it would be a surefire hit. With CHICAGO & MOULIN ROUGE having indicated the musical is making a comeback, then it would be good to have LOST HORIZON out on the market again to educate people in how not to make one. But it sure is hell of a lot of fun along the way.


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