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John Phillip Law
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 <email@example.com>
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 »
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Enjoyable, even though it often strays from the original story
Years ago, I read Stevenson's story, KIDNAPPED. When I watched this 1938 version of the story, I couldn't help but wonder if I was losing my mind, as so much of it seemed like it wasn't in the book--particularly the romantic subplot and quite a bit of the action. Well, when I later checked, I found that for once I wasn't losing my mind--the story was heavily re-worked and in many places it bore little similarity to the novel. Additionally, I was surprised that despite the story being set in Scotland, none of the characters sounded like Scots--having mostly American and a few English accents. In particular, I have always liked Warner Baxter as an actor, but here he sounds exactly the same as he did in practically all his films--like a nice but not particularly rugged American.
Yet despite all this, the story still was rather enjoyable and kept my attention throughout. Very nice looking sets and a basic story that is hard to screw up, it isn't surprising that the story still delivers. It's well worth a look, but considering that KIDNAPPED is such an easy read, I still recommend the book over this film.
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