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Kidnapped (1938)

Approved | | Adventure, Drama | 27 May 1938 (USA)
In 1747 Jacobite Scotland young David Balfour's life is threatened by his greedy uncle who wishes to become heir to the considerable Balfour estate.

Directors:

(as Alfred Werker), (uncredited)

Writers:

(as Robert Louis Stevenson's 'Kidnapped'/The Adventures of David Balfour), (screen play) | 3 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Duke of Argyle
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Gordon
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James
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Arthur Hohl ...
E.E. Clive ...
Halliwell Hobbes ...
Dominie Campbell
Montagu Love ...
Colonel Whitehead
Donald Haines ...
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Storyline

In the late eighteenth century David Balfour's evil uncle arranges for him to be kidnapped and sent to sea where he meets exiled Breck. The two make their way back to Scotland and justice. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Adventure | Drama

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

27 May 1938 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Kidnapped: The Adventures of David Balfour  »

Box Office

Budget:

$750,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(FMC Library Print)

Sound Mix:

(RCA High Fidelity Recording)

Color:

(Sepiatone)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Director Otto Preminger was fired and replaced by Alfred L. Werker after 20th Century-Fox studio head Darryl F. Zanuck complained that he hadn't followed the script while directing a scene with Freddie Bartholomew and a dog. Although Preminger at first tried to remain calm, insisting that he had followed the script, Zanuck continued to argue with him until Preminger launched into a screaming tirade at him and stormed out of the screening room. The next day Preminger returned to Fox to find the lock on his office changed and his name taken off the door, and his parking space moved to a faraway location on the lot. Although he still had 11 months in his two-year contract, Preminger soon left Fox. See more »

Goofs

The story takes place in 1747, but Arleen Whelan's hair style is strictly 1938. See more »

Quotes

Duke of Argyle: Better to deal with one martyr than a nation of martyrs.
See more »

Connections

Version of Kidnapped (1959) See more »

Soundtracks

Rule Britannia
(1740) (uncredited)
Music by Thomas Augustine Arne
Played briefly in the score
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Scotland 1747
18 August 2012 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

If you're a Robert Louis Stevenson purist you will probably not find this version of Kidnapped to your liking. I've not seen yet the version with Roddy McDowall from 1948, but the Disney version with James MacArthur and Peter Finch sticks far closer to what Stevenson wrote.

Not that Freddie Bartholomew is bad as young Balfour the heir who gets hijacked rather than kidnapped, a scheme to deprive him of a Scottish title by his miserly uncle played by Miles Mander. In the book and in the Disney film, Balfour's story is the plot of the film. In this version we get far more of Scottish politics as they were in 1747.

The character of Balfour's grownup savior Alan Breck is built up and a whole plot involving a romance with a Scottish lass played by Arleen Whelan is given equal time with the Balfour predicament. Warner Baxter is cast as Alan Breck and this must have only happened because Darryl Zanuck had Tyrone Power and Don Ameche working on other projects. Power would really have brought a verve to the role that Baxter just didn't have. Not unlike The Prince And The Pauper where Errol Flynn is the dashing Miles Hendon saving the young king Edward VI. And in that film Flynn while top billed did not have his character built up to take away from the main story.

Kidnapped is not a bad film, but the Disney version is much better.


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