It might come as a surprise to today's general movie-goer that back in 1925 audiences were already thrilled and delighted by a special effects action/romance/adventure spectacle not at all unlike the modern-day "Jurassic Park" type of films. This DVD really brings back the glory days of the silent era when all the genres of movies we have today actually developed and even reached their peak of sophistication, and "The Lost World" is a good example of how talented and skilled filmmakers already were back in the 1920s. Based on the famous novel by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, "The Lost World" is a fictional adventure story based on a few facts, such as the discovery of a high mountain plateau in an unexplored jungle where unknown plants and animals were believed to exist. But then fancy and fantasy take over, and the explorers find aggressive, prehistoric dinosaurs roaming the plateau, and that's when the fun and excitement begins, culminating in a grand climax of a captured dinosaur wreaking havoc in the streets of London with scenes that could rival those of "King Kong" made only several years later. Watching these scenes, it is obvious that a great deal of dedicated effort went into the lengthy animation scenes, especially as many different kinds of prehistoric animals are featured in "The Lost World".
It is fortunate that we now have a nearly completely restored version (minus about 10 minutes) of this special film which was a worldwide sensation in 1925, and can still stand up to modern-day movies of the same genre. While some scenes are obvious props or paintings, and sometimes the animals' movements and volcanic eruptions are just a little less realistic than modern digital or computer-generated images, the overall impression of "The Lost World" is that it was a great achievement and landmark in cinema, and paved the way for King Kong, Godzilla, Jurassic Park and many other similar movies along the way. There are two excellent musical accompaniments to choose from on this DVD; a traditional orchestral score, and a more adventurous score by the Alloy Orchestra with unusual sound effects which I actually found to be more suitable at times, such as in the action scenes with the dinosaurs. Along with excellent music and near-perfect picture quality, there are also some bonuses such as the reproduction of the original souvenir program booklet with various interesting articles and pictures, as well as a good audio commentary by an expert on Arthur Conan Doyle. His commentary gives in-depth insight into Doyle's story, how the book differs from the film, but also explanations about how the special effects and animations were done. Even for those of us not especially crazy about dinosaurs, "The Lost World" is still an exciting and fun adventure, and an important, historically significant film for all sincere film enthusiasts.