Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Boys of Lost Island|
Actors: Mark Lee, Carmen Duncan
Director: Mende Brown
Genres: Action & Adventure, Kids & Family
LOST BOYS synopsis 2/28/06 When a group of boys are stranded on a deserted island after a storm destroys their boat, they know that the only way they'll survive is to stick together. But when another storm beaches an... more »
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No redeeming qualities
bookloversfriend | United States | 08/22/2006
(2 out of 5 stars)
"This is NOT "non-stop, edge of your seat adventure." The story is pedestrian: the beached ship has all the supplies they need. Plus the island unaccountably has sheep, goats, even a dog. The boys don't do much of anything except climb rocks and recite dumb lines. It is not credible that Jules Verne could have written anything this bad. Even the bad-guy bit at the end only lasts ten minutes and is a fizzle.
The acting is of the quality of a junior high school play rehearsal--an early rehearsal. The technical quality is a cut above a home movie, but not by much. The sound is atrocious. The movie is 66 minutes long.
I can't imagine anyone who would enjoy this movie, not even young children.
A fair-to-middlin' movie for the kids...
Dr. van der Linden | Williamstown, NJ | 06/14/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)
...but quite slowly paced and most assuredly outdated.
It's so politically incorrect, for example, that it shows adolescent and preadolescent boys - without adult supervision - confidently and effectively handling the sorts of small-caliber rifles that rural Americans learn to use at about the same age. And it accepts this as a matter of common sense, as if anyone who supposed otherwise was some sort of drooling idiot.
If you have a kid in the household who had enjoyed Disney's film version of *Swiss Family Robinson* (1960), this low-budget, thoroughly unpolished production is a potential value.
A minor Verne film, attempting and accomplishing little
Brian Taves | Washington, DC United States | 02/12/2008
(2 out of 5 stars)
"STRANGE HOLIDAY (1969), released in 1992 by GoodTimes [sic] Home Video as BOYS OF LOST ISLAND, is actually one of the most faithful of Verne films, but that is primarily a result of the picture's modest scope. Based on Two Years's Holiday (1888), the story tells of a group of schoolchildren whose ship slips its moorings during a storm, and are afterward shipwrecked on a deserted island. The book is notable for its realistic portrayal of the clashing nationalities and inclinations of the children, who are tempted to break into various factions. However, they manage to survive due to their ability to unite and preserve their civilized traditions. Today, the positivist sentiment makes Two Years's Holiday seem partly a response to William Golding's Lord of the Flies (1954), a book that took a similar situation and reversed Verne's theme.
STRANGE HOLIDAY compresses Two Years's Holiday into 75 minutes, following the outline of the book and adding little that is new. The boys prudently go about surviving the shipwreck, finding the cave of a dead Frenchman who had been shipwrecked long before. They make the cave habitable, and elect the sensible Gordon (Van Alexander) as their leader, hunting and exploring the island. An attempt by Doniphan (Mark Healey) to establish separate quarters is dropped when one of his followers suffers a broken leg, and the boys reunite. They happily agree not to punish the younger Briant (Jaeme Hamilton) when he confesses that he foolishly loosed the ropes that had moored their boat. Further exploration by Doniphan after another storm reveals a second shipwreck, and its survivors are three ruffians who go after the boys.
Little time is allowed for characterization or more than the sketchiest notice of the conflicts between the children. However, Moco (Jaime Messang) receives more attention than he does in the novel, and is portrayed in STRANGE HOLIDAY as a native who is wiser than his white comrades in the means of survival. He devises a "devil" scheme to convince the pirates that the island is haunted, with the result that two of the pirates kill one another and a third is captured. To heighten the contrast with the boys, the shipwrecked young lady (Carmen Duncan, the best performer in the film in an amateurish group) spends her first minutes, after regaining consciousness, fixing her hair, while the lads watch her, bored. The ship's carpenter has also survived, and with his help, the boys discover they are on an archipelago and repair a ship, sailing to safety.
While the script generally helps the film, it is obscured by the dreadful elocution of the children, all of whom appear to be the appropriate ages, between eight and fourteen. However, much of the story's charm is eliminated by the film altering the setting from Verne's time to the present. While this was doubtless partly due to budgetary constraints, the change to contemporary period was probably also deemed the best way to intrigue the youthful audience the picture was addressing. Surprisingly, the pirate invasion that provides the final menace, and ultimately leads to the castaways's escape, does not seem incongruous in the setting; the resemblance approximates smugglers.
Regrettably, STRANGE HOLIDAY also never escapes the limitations imposed by its cost and audience. The movie is clearly aimed at children's matinees, and saw minimal release and television showing, reflecting the form's typical low cost, inept acting, and mediocre direction. Produced, written, and directed by Mende Brown, the picture was filmed by Mass-Brown Pictures in Australia, and shot in color and widescreen in studios in Sydney and around the nearby coastline. Much of the location photography and general art direction is quite pleasing, and the best part of the picture. However, the score by Tommy Tycho is loud, intrusive, and pointless, and the opening and closing credits are ruined by ludicrous voice-overs of a boy's choir singing "Row, row, row your boat." STRANGE HOLIDAY is a minor Verne film, in a lesser vein, attempting and accomplishing little.
Terrible movie...with an even worse print
Gadget Guru | 10/19/2009
(1 out of 5 stars)
"Between silly dialog, a predictable plot and a poor image quality (don't let the pretty picture on the cover fool you - the print looks like old VHS), this looks like someone's back yard school film project.
When I saw it was based on a Jules Verne story, I was intrigued enough to pick this up. While I expected a cross between "Lord of the Flies" and "Shipwrecked", what I got was a mess of a story with preposterous plot elements. Worse, there was very little "action and adventure" in favor of a stagnant story that felt padded and lacking in any logic.
Avoid this one."