Posts Tagged ‘Island of Dr. Moreau’

Lost Soul: The Doomed Journey of Richard Stanley's Island of Dr. Moreau Movie PosterDirector David Gregory has a long history of behind-the-scenes documentary shorts, Lost Soul is more than just a making-of doc that would accompany The Island Of Dr. Moreau disc. Fans of cult director/writer Richard Stanley get a good insight into what makes this fascinating film maker tick.

For followers of the novel and film itself Lost Souls also covers the earlier film attempts of H. G. Wells and looks at the books core themes and origin. Gregory offers a captivating documentary with its mix of archival materials and surviving-collaborator testimonies. It wonderfully chronicles how a conflict of vision, creative decisions, lack of interest and awful weather plagued the disastrous production and destroyed friendships with entertaining stories of behind-the- scenes drama including drugs, alcohol and egos. Sadly David Thewlis or Ron Perlman do not participate and it would have been interesting to hear their views.

If you enjoyed Jodorowsky’s Dune (2013) Lost In La Mancha (2002) basically other “failed film” documentaries – this is a must see.

imageCrewman Andrew Braddock survives the wreck of the sailing ship and is assisted by a mysterious scientist Dr. Moreau, however, he soon meets the inhabitants of the island who are far from natural and things are not as they seem.

Based on H. G. Wells classic and a remake of Island of Lost Souls (1932) with it’s 1977 film pace trappings aside Burt Lancaster is outstanding as Dr. Moreau with great screen presence and Nigel Davenport’s short screen time is impressive. While Michael York and Barbara Carrera’s performances don’t shake any trees the makeup effects are great (reminiscent of planet of the apes) but the abundance of daylight scenes rob them of much of the creepiness and the blood colouring is a little off and of the time.

The end twist is brave and bleak and director Don Taylor offers some nice jungle scenery, tension, staging and the closing showdown with real animals and practical stunts are finely executed.