Lively, entertaining reviews of, and essays on, old and newer films and everything relating to them, written by professional author William Schoell.

Thursday, October 21, 2010


TWO LOST WORLDS (1951). Director: Norman Dawn.

James Arness [billed as James Aurness] plays Kirk Hamilton, who leaves Salem in a clipper ship only to get injured when the ship is attacked by a pirate band. While recuperating, Hamilton falls for Elaine Jeffries (Laura Elliot, pictured), who has a precocious little sister named Janice (Gloria Petroff). When the pirates raid the land, they carry off Elaine, and Kirk -- along with stowaway Janice -- takes off in hot pursuit. They all wind up in the Dutch East Indies, where the principals are seemingly trapped on a volcanic island full of prehistoric animals, all of them courtesy of stock footage from One Million B.C. Pierre Watkin, who played Perry White in Atom Man vs. Superman, is cast as Elaine's father. This odd hybrid movie throws in a "lost world" of dinosaurs only at the very end, and suffers from completely unnecessary narration. Although Two Lost Worlds is perfectly professional, it's also distinctly minor-league. Laura Elliot was also known as Kasey Rogers and did mostly TV work after this, appearing frequently on Bewitched. She had a notable part in her most famous film, Hitchcock's Strangers on a Train (also 1951), and was quite good as Farley Granger's wife, who gets murdered by Robert Walker.

Verdict: Not enough monsters -- boo! **.

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