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Re: LOST WORLD cynicism



I'm into instructional systems design which involves lots of media design 
and production. I can most definitely appreciate the technical 
difficulties of making Lost World. I was amazed by what went into 
Jurassic Park and I won't be going into Lost World Monday with a view 
toward picking the show apart technically.

Stephen Faust                   smfaust@edisto.cofc.edu

On Sat, 24 May 1997, Steven S. Lazarus wrote:

> Hey everybody...
> 
> When criticizing LOST WORLD keep in mind that filmmaking is an art form and
> one that most of you know very little about. You can pick apart any similar
> action/adventure picture. There are lots of implausibilities in every one
> of them. For example, DIE HARD, which is a classic in the genre, and a
> great movie, has probably more implausibilities than LOST WORLD (plot wise,
> not the overall concept). The difference is that they are subtle and can be
> debated. And they're just above that borderline of suspension of disbelief.
> If you over-analyze them, they become questionable under close scrutiny and
> the illusion fades. But that's the trick and the art of filmmaking. This
> type of picture is intentionally over-the-top, a surrealistic exagerration
> of reality. THAT'S WHAT THIS MOVIE IS! Maybe it's your opinion that it
> should have been more like a Bergman film or Mutual of Omaha's Wild
> Kingdom, but if that approach was taken I'm sure the original Jurassic Park
> wouldn't have generated enough excitement to justify (money-wise) a 75
> million dollar sequel. Although I would love to see a movie in which there
> were no human actors and the camera just moved lazily through a dinosaur
> populated savanna or jungle. Maybe someday someone will make that kind of
> movie, but what they have made is a damn good movie for the type of movie
> that it is intended to be.
> 
> Here's some examples of what I'm talking about in over-critisizing this
> type of film in an exchange between Ron Orenstein (playing the part of
> uptight cynic) and jeff Poling in the (wait a minute... what about this
> possiblity) open-minded role.
> 
> ORENSTEIN:
> >>7.  Our photographer character has been in more than one war zone.  He's
> >>not stupid.  He knows his life is at stake.  So what does he do to his
> >>chief guard's main line of defense?  Takes the bullets out of his gun!
> 
> POLING:
> >   Was he telling the truth about being a photographer?  I'm not so sure.
> >The guy was an Earth Firster, and Hammond's secret weapon.  I've seen quotes
> >from the founders of Earth First; what I read suggests the *founders* are
> >fanatics, whackos or just plain idiots (I do know that one of the reasons
> >why one of the founders left Greenpeace to start Earth First was because he
> >didn't think Greenpeace was bold and "forceful" enough).  Whether this is
> >true of the rest of the organization I don't know, but based on the quotes
> ?of the founders I found his taking of the bullets to be absolutely 
> believable.
> 
> >>9.  INGEN has huge helicopters capable of flying in heavy vehicles.  They
> >>have a doped-up T. rex that will only stay under for so long.  So why do
> >>they send the critter home by ship???
> 
> >   Because they have a doped-up T. rex that will only stay under for so
> >long?  Anybody know how long a helicopter trip would have been?  If it's a
> >long trip, the thing would wake up and they'd have a hell of a situation on
> >their hands if it wasn't fully secured, the stress surely would not have
> >been good for it, and in any case they wouldn't have been able to monitor it
> >if it had difficult with the tranquilizers, which apparently it did.
> 
> >>10.  What on earth was the naval destroyer escort supposed to do?  Possibly
> >>the film's most ludicrous image....
> 
> >   Not at all.  I haven't forgotten the nonsense with the three whales stuck
> >in the ice several years ago.  Given that, I'd say the escort was a way for
> >the nations of the earth to show solidarity with their brethern over
> >preserving the wonders of nature ... and, I suppose, to make it clear that
> >anybody ELSE who tried to take the dinosaurs off the island would get hit
> >with the business end of a destroyer.
> 
> And Betty C does a great job in answering Larry's questionable criticism:
> 
> LARRY:
> >> What about the errors in logic in the movie (don't read further if
> >> you don't want to know), the biggest one being how the T-Rex on the
> >> boat got out, ate the crew, and then locked itself back in the hold?
> >> How did it eat the guy in the cabin?  How was a ship with a dead
> >> crew guided back right to port?  Hmmm . . . pretty sloppy.  Loved the
> >> movie otherwise though.
> 
> BETTY C:
> >I saw it this way:
> >there was a dramatic pause on the dead arm holding the switch BEFORE we
> >figured out the T rex was bouncing the doors trying to get out.  The
> >director was trying to tell us something.
> >I figured there's a bit not shown where, after the T gets out, starts
> >killing everybody (why are there dismembered body parts in the ships'
> >cabin but no T rex-sized holes in the cabin?) he badly mangles the
> >button operator who, left for dead (WHY was he not eaten?) and manfully,
> >as the T rex chases somebody back into the hold, crawls to the button
> >and pushes it to seal in the T rex then expires gorely.
> 
> Great insight Betty!!
> 
> Alot got cut from this movie and it was still a 2 hour and 15 minute movie.
> No doubt they could flesh out some scenes to explain how the situations
> came about but we'd end up with a four hour movie.
> 
> People we really don't need to prove our intellectual superiority by
> reaching for every miniscule flaw. Philosophically speaking, cyncism is a
> sickness of the human spirit and I hate to see that view of the world
> prevail. The positive far outweighs the negative with THE LOST WORLD. Let's
> NOT let the NEGATIVE become the emphasis, let us rejoice in the POSITIVE...
> 
> Sincerely,
> SSL
> 
> 
>