Kidnapped (1971)

G   |    |  Adventure, Drama

Kidnapped (1971) Poster

In eighteenth century Scotland, during the Jacobite Rebellion, David Balfour claims his inheritance from his uncle who has him shanghaied on a ship where David meets fugitive Jacobite rebel Alan Breck.


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27 September 2004 | WilliamOfRubruck
| Very Entertaining
I enjoyed this movie very much. It is loosely based on two Robert Louis Stevenson novels, Kidnapped and its sequel Catriona. Those who would religiously stick to the contents of these novels will be disappointed in the adaptation. However, the film has, as it should IMHO, a world and plot of its own. Moreover, the plot is engaging and quite exciting.

The film movingly portrays a culture and political cause on the verge of destruction and the politics behind it. To a certain extent, it has to modify the plot of the two novels to effectively do so. Now it might have been nice if we could have heard the Scottish language spoken amongst the Highlanders. This absence makes it harder to portray the cultural conflict which was important both in the period and in the novels. However, we can forgive the film's makers by remembering that such was rarely done in the early 1970s.

The plot may not be entirely accurate in detail (the Appin murder, etc), but the portrayal of the Jacobite Rebellion is both very accurate and insightful, surprisingly so for a big-time film. The ending is a terrific and original attempt to convey the thoughts and psychology of a man through the medium of film.

All that aside, it is a historical adventure. One either likes that genre or doesn't. If the former, then the chances are you will like this.

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