The City of Lost Children

1995 [FRENCH]

Action / Drama / Fantasy / Sci-Fi

Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Certified Fresh79%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Upright90%
IMDb Rating7.51068751


Plot summary

Uploaded by: FREEMAN

Top cast

Ron Perlman Photo
Ron Perlman as One
Dominique Pinon Photo
Dominique Pinon as Le scaphandrier / Les clones
Mathieu Kassovitz Photo
Mathieu Kassovitz as Man on the Street
Jean-Louis Trintignant Photo
Jean-Louis Trintignant as L'oncle Irvin
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
1.01 GB
French 2.0
23.976 fps
1 hr 52 min
P/S ...
2.08 GB
French 5.1
23.976 fps
1 hr 52 min
P/S ...

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Coventry10 / 10

The Lost City of Cinema-Gold!

"The City of Lost Children" is unquestionably one of the most imaginative and exceptional films of the entire 90's decade and it pretty much represents an entire sub genre all by itself! It's a dark and often disturbing fairy-tale, but nevertheless magical and child-friendly. Since this is a film by Marc Caro & Jean-Pierre Jeunet, you simply know to expect a unique and surreal story (remember "Delicatessen"?) filled with extravagant characters and bizarre dreamscapes! It's enchanting to observe and quite challenging to follow, as there's always some ingenious gimmick to distract your attention from the main plot. I got hooked on it right from the GENIUS opening sequence in which a child's dream about Santa Claus slowly turns into an eerie nightmare. The action then cuts to the "main" character; the evil Krank who's unable to dream himself and hence kidnaps orphans in order to steal their dreams. Krank has an army of semi-human androids, one brother cloned six times, an uncanny midget-mother AND a malicious brain in a fish tank! Ron Perlman is a good guy for once! He portrays a simple-minded yet friendly strongman, assisted in the search for his abducted little brother by a witty young girl. "The City of Lost Children" is an amazingly energetic and vivid adventure and no self-respecting cinema fanatic can afford him/herself to miss it! It's funny, frightening, emotional and intelligent all at once. The decors are mesmerizing, the music is dazzling and the special effects are staggering. I can keep on mentioning good aspects, but it all comes down to one thing: watch this film!!! It's still regretfully underrated and we urgently need to change that!

Reviewed by MartinHafer6 / 10

Amazingly difficult to rate--and I STILL don't know if I liked it!!!

I sought out this film after seeing another film from the same production team that made the wonderful DELICATESSEN. However, while I adored DELICATESSEN and gave it a very high score, I wasn't nearly as impressed by CITY OF LOST CHILDREN--mostly because this film seemed to emphasize set design and weirdness, while plot seemed almost unimportant. In DELICATESSEN, there were of course the weirdness and odd sets, but the story and acting was so much more important and this made me care much more for the characters. In CITY OF LOST CHILDREN, it felt more like I was gawking at a freak show and there was just no emotional involvement--none.

In many ways, the film was reminiscent of several of Terry Gilliam's films--particularly BRAZIL. However, once again, BRAZIL had better characters and made me laugh. CITY OF LOST KIDS was just creepy and weird but with practically no charm.

Now this isn't to say it's a bad film or that I didn't like it--I did. But instead of an involving or funny film, it was almost all visuals and weirdness. As for the plot, it sure took me a long time to even understand what was happening--and it seemed like I needed captions to explain the captions as I read along with the film!! But given the amazing sets and cool characters, it still kept my attention. I particularly enjoyed seeing Dominique Pinon playing a bunch of clones. I have liked this odd looking actor ever since I first saw him in DIVA and he was the best character in both this film and DELICATESSEN. His delivery and manner is just captivating.

Now usually in most of my reviews I give a summary of the plot. Here it's very tough because I still am not 100% sure what I saw!! It all involves an evil genius who was created by one of the Dominique Pinons. This guy spends much of the movie kidnapping kids and trying to steal their dreams (kind of like an evil twist on MONSTERS INC.). At the same time, some evil freaks led by conjoined twins are thrown in as rival baddies. In the midst of this, Ron Perlman (who speaks no French in real life) and a little girl set off in search of Perlman's stolen little brother. There's more to it than that, but really I didn't think the story was that important--it was more a chance to give a canvas to all the weird sets and characters.

Overall, I liked seeing the film but I never came close to loving it. I recommend it for those with an appreciation for the very weird and perhaps lovers of French cinema. All others, proceed at your own risk.

Reviewed by SnoopyStyle6 / 10

Visually compelling but muddled movie

The evil Krank (Daniel Emilfork),his dwarf wife and his clone minions children (Dominique Pinon) have a machine to steal the dreams of young children because Krank can't have dreams himself. One (Ron Perlman) is a strong man performer whose little brother Denree is kidnapped by Krank's underlings, the Cyclops. Miette (Judith Vittet) is a young street kid who ends up helping him.

This has a lot of weird concepts on display. I can only describe this a outlandish mix of Dickensian poverty and a french grimy Jules Verne sci-fi with a good helping of weird surrealism. The visual is a good unique grim fairy tale but the story drags a little too much. It meanders and is confused. It is in love with its visual surrealism more than trying to make sense with the story. It should be a lot more simpler than what it is. It spends a lot of time luxuriating in the weirdness of the world and the villain.

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