Lost Worlds: Life in the Balance (2001)
IMAX's Lost Worlds is one of the large-format company's more ambitious productions. Inspired by Edmund O. Wilson's The Diversity of Life and taking its name from Arthur Conan Doyle's science fiction classic, it's a lively, yet thoughtful illustration of biodiversity that combines rare nature footage with well-integrated CGI effects and scientific inquiry (from biologists to schoolchildren). Actor Harrison Ford, convinced to participate because of his passion for environmental issues, narrates in a likeably laconic manner. Lost Worlds was filmed on location in Guatemala, Quebec, New York, California, and Venezuela, and the sequence set among the last's table-top mountains--particularly the alien terrain of Mount Roraima and breathtaking Angel Falls--is the highlight (and also the inspiration behind Conan Doyle's novel). Director Bayley Silleck (Cosmic Voyage) successfully illuminates the adage that "no man is an island." As Ford notes with characteristic understatement, "When we protect nature, we protect ourselves."