6.3/10
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Guns in the Heather (1969)

Walt Disney's 3-part made-for-TV feature, The Secret of Boyne Castle (1969), originally shown on "Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color" (the new title for "Disneyland"), re-edited into feature film form for European theatrical release.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Tom
Alfred Burke ...
Kersner
...
Rich
Patrick Dawson ...
Sean
...
Hugh McDermott ...
Carleton
Patrick Westwood ...
Levick
Eddie Byrne ...
Bailey
Godfrey Quigley ...
Meister
Kevin Stoney ...
Enhardt
Shay Gorman ...
Headmaster
...
Ernst Walder ...
Vollos
Robert Bernal ...
Sgt. Clune
Vincent Dowling ...
Maston
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Storyline

The Secret of Boyne Castle (television title) or Guns in the Heather (theatrical title) is a wild romp through late 1960's Ireland with two school chums being pursued by spies from an unknown state. The story opens with an automobile chase scene of a mortally wounded Irish underworld figure being chased by the spies. The chase ends at an upper class school where the spies will not of course follow the man they wounded onto the school grounds. The wounded man is looking for an American student at the school by the name of Rich Evans. With his dying breath, he tells Evans to look in, "...my room at Boyne Castle." Rich with his friend Sean O'Connor set off for Boyne Castle but on the way are kidnapped by the spies. They seem to feel that Evans knows something that his older brother Tom - who unbeknown st to Rich Evans is a secret agent - knows. The indignant younger Evans replies, "...Tom's a sales representative for steel company." Evans and O'Connor manage to escape from the "bad guys.... Written by Steve Sassi

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Genres:

Family | Adventure

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Release Date:

July 1969 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Spy-Busters  »

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Trivia

This was the supporting feature to the original UK release of The Love Bug (1968). See more »

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User Reviews

 
So much padding
24 February 2017 | by (Tennessee) – See all my reviews

The Secret of Boyne Castle tells the story of Rich (Kurt Russell), a fairly normal American exchange student attending school in Ireland. Everything about his life is fairly routine. Then in one day's time, his life is turned upside down. He's visited by a dying man with a secret, discovers his brother is an American agent, and is taken prisoner by a band of Commie goons. Rich and his buddy have to find a way to escape and make their way to Boyne Castle to uncover the dying man's secret.

The Secret of Boyne Castle isn't horrible, but it's not very good either. I have several problems with the movie, beginning with the horribly misleading title. Being a Disney production with a name like The Secret of Boyne Castle, I was expecting more. The "secret" ends up being a real letdown. It's a scrap of paper with a short message hidden in a fireplace – not at all what I was hoping for. I also have a problem with how simple the plot is. There aren't really any twists or turns. Every time I thought the story was going to take a turn and get interesting, it didn't. Instead, the plot goes from point A to point B on the straightest line possible. Again, disappointing. But the biggest issue I had was with the padding. The version I watched (the three segment Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color presentation) ran 2 hours and 20-something minutes. I'd guess that at least 45 of those minutes were added padding. Most of the movie goes something like this: Rich and his buddy are almost captured – they make a daring escape – they run. Repeat over and over and over. It quickly gets tedious.

On the positive side, the acting is solid. A lot of the performances were very nice. Russell is solid in this early outing. His buddy, played by Patrick Dawson, is a nice complement. But the real star is the Irish countryside. It's stunningly beautiful. I doubt the Irish tourist bureau could put together anything more appealing. I'd love to visit some the locations where The Secret of Boyne Castle was shot.

Overall, a 4/10 from me.


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