Lost Horizon (1973) DVD9
Diplomat Richard Conway's latest peacemaking effort in Southeast Asia has failed, and he must flee with several other Americans on a small DC-3. But in place of Hong Kong, the plane takes them high into "the unexplored region beyond civilization" in the west of China. Crashing on a mountain peak, they are miraculously rescued and taken through the deep snow to an incredible place called Shangri-La, in The Valley of The Blue Moon. There the weather is always pleasant, sickness and need are unknown, and peaceful harmony reigns. Richard immediately feels as if he belongs there, especially when the pleasant Catherine smiles in his direction. All find reasons to stay in Shangri-La forever. The High Lama divulges secrets about the purpose of Shangri-La, and why Richard was brought there, but his story is so fantastic that Richard is afraid to believe it. Richard has been chosen to be Shangri-La's next leader, to keep it safe until the war-obsessed outside world is ready to embrace its wisdom. 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.

Director: Charles Jarrott
Cast: Peter Finch, Liv Ullmann, Sally Kellerman, George Kennedy, Michael York, Olivia Hussey, Bobby Van
Country: USA
Genre: Fantasy, Musical, Adventure, Drama, Romance

DVD9 | NTSC 16:9 | 02:29:22 | 7.28 Gb + 3% rec
Language: English (Dolby AC3, 6 ch)
Subtitles: none


Original song demos by Burt Bacharach (23:44). Sung in Bacharach's distinctive croak with simple piano accompaniment, these demos are a good way to hear Mr. B's solid melodies sans orchestral arrangements. The demos all come with animated slide shows of various behind-the-scenes shots on the film, which are terrific.

Ross Hunter on the Way to Shangri-La' (10:03) is a vintage featurette with Hunter himself, resplendent in sunglasses and blue denim ensemble, proudly crowing on the magnificent achievement he just did on this production. The film isn't in the best shape, but it contains many fascinating shots in and around the Warner Bros. studio backlot (this was the first film Columbia shot there, under the guise of The Burbank Studios). The musical score on this film is an awesomely arranged instrumental take on "Things I Will Not Miss", by the way.

Ross Hunter Promo (8:36) are outtakes of Hunter from the above featurette. The film is in widescreen and, although terribly faded, better preserved than the featurette footage.

"I Come To You" alternate version. This sequence is sourced from a degraded print, and presented in letterboxed 4:3 format. Fascinatingly awful.


BD50 | 1080p AVC | 02:29:29 | 45.6 Gb + 3% rec
Language: English
Subtitles: English


All but one of the extra features from the Columbia Classics MOD DVD have been ported over to this release (the longer Ross Hunter featurette is missing), along with some new items.

Ross Hunter: On the Way to Shangri-La (HD: 10:03) is a vintage featurette that finds the producer extremely enthused about his upcoming production. As with the DVD presentation, the elements here are in pretty shoddy shape, with badly faded color.

Alternate Scene: I Come to You (480i; 2:17)

Burt Bacharach Song Demos (480p; 23:42) is basically an audio supplement that does feature some nice behind the scenes stills accompanying the dulcet tones of Mr. Bacharach. (Maybe not.)

Isolated Score is presented via DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 and contains only the instrumental portions, including the songs. This is a fantastic opportunity to hear the orchestrations up close and personal. It's also a chance to hear how anachronistic some of Bacharach's pure underscoring seems given the visual content.

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