The Land That Time Forgot DVD review

Another take on Edgar Rice Burroughs' novel, how does C Thomas Howell fare in front of and behind the camera for The Land That Time Forgot?

Many years ago, I had the privilege of seeing Warlords Of Atlantis at my local cinema on a double bill. I can’t remember what the supporting feature was. It may have been one of those Nicholas Hammond Spider-Man films culled from the TV series (where is that on DVD?) Suffice to say, I loved it! Several years later I caught the other Kevin Connor-Doug McClure ‘epics’, probably over the Christmas period ,and they all became favourites of mine. Best part of 30 years later, I proudly have them in my DVD collection and when I heard that a new version of The Land That Time Forgot was being made I was quietly excited.

Two couples, a crusty old captain and his first mate, are on a yacht somewhere off the coast of America (Key West in Florida is mentioned). The storm they encounter is getting worse and suddenly a bright light appears on the ocean. The next thing they know they are adrift in calmer waters and spot an island ahead.

Anchoring the boat, they travel ashore leaving behind head of the trip, Frost’s wife, who has unwisely decided to stay on the boat.The island looks like a paradise but, rather like the original, it has inhabitants who normally wouldn’t be around in this time. Biting the dust rather early, the captain’s first mate becomes lunch for one of the prehistoric beasties. The party then realize their surroundings are not an island paradise.

Not having read Tarzan creator Edgar Rice Burroughs’ novel, I cannot compare this new modern adaption to the original source. However, there are similarities between the new version and the 70s version, including Germans in a submarine.

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Main lead Frost is played by C. Thomas Howell who is also the director. His best friend in the film Cole is played by the movie’s writer Darren Dalton, so the team behind The Day The Earth Stopped are back for more sci-fi fun. Do they succeed? Well, the answer is an astounding yes, considering the budget and the fact they have a real bona fide classic to live up to.

Right, let’s get to the chase.  The Land That Time Forgot has not got the budget of Jurassic Park but it has got some amazing beautiful (if familiar) surroundings, good and bad CGI effects and The Asylum’s continued knack of getting very attractive unknown ladies in the lead roles. This time out, the main female lead is Lindsey McKeon. who Supernatural fans will remember as a reaper in the brilliant Death Takes A Holiday episode. with support from Russian actress Anya Benton as Howell’s wife. Veteran actor Timothy Bottoms also crops up as the crusty old captain.

CGI T-Rex from various other Asylum productions turns up and menaces the stranded crew and once again looks good in parts and bad in others but works well all the same.  There is some nice digital matte work with the submarine and, thanks to the locations and the pretty good acting all round, the film looks more expensive than it probably cost.  A big thumbs up to director Howell, who has continued with his association with The Asylum and has improved with every feature he has directed for them.

On the disc we have plenty of trailers for other releases including Transmorphers: Fall Of Man, a making of documentary and some bloopers. Also there is a 2.0 and 5.1 sound option as well for your audio set up.

The Land That Time Forgot is good old fashioned cheesy fun and apart from a couple of bloody bits, it’s suitable for kids as well. It ends with a possible sequel in the offing and considering Doug McClure came back for The People That Time Forgot, why can’t C. Thomas Howell as well?

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3 out of 5