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Category:    Home > Reviews > Serial > Action > Adventure > Science Ficiton > The Lost City (1935) + Lost City Of The Jungle (1946; VCI/Serials)

The Lost City (1935) + Lost City Of The Jungle (1946; VCI/Serials)


Picture: C     Sound: C     Extras: C     Serials: C+/C



VCI has happened to release two serials with two similar titles, but they are not the same or connected in any way.  Columbia Pictures distributed The Lost City (1935) though it seems like an independent production from “Super-Serial Productions of New York, N.Y.” and producer Sherman S. Krellberg.  With future “The Shadow” Kane Richmond as Bruce Gordon battling the evil villain Zolok (William “Stage” Boyd), who has an earthquake machine deep in Africa where he is going to try and take over the world.


Universal Pictures produced Lost City Of The Jungle (1946) with supporting stars Lionel Atwill (who died during production!) & Keye Luke.  It has a madman played by Atwill in Africa using a secret nuclear substance to start WWIII, but Rod Stanton (Russell Hayden) and Tal Shan of The United Peace Foundation will try to stop him.  It has its moments, but it is not as good as the first serial and Atwill untimely passing likely has something to do with it.


Also, the nuclear weapon is just not as interesting and fun as an earthquake machine.  The mad scientist in the first serial seems madder and the shoot has more character and form, partly looking like Horror and German Expressionism.  Both are in 1.33 X 1 black and white as intended, but the Video Black on the 1935 release is a bit better than the 1946.  The sound is the opposite, both optical mono and here in Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono.  VCI has done a good job for playback of both considering they had the materials they had, continuing to lead in the most serials on DVD of any company.  They show no signs of quitting.


Extras on the 1935 serial include text on the director and two leads, stills and trailers for two other serials also issued by VCI.  On the 1946 serial, extras include trailers for two other serials also issued by VCI and five text bios.  Amusing all around and at least ambitious, both sold separately, each are worth a look.  However, the 1935 film has more energy and is the better of the two.



-   Nicholas Sheffo


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