6.8/10
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9 user 9 critic

Kidnapped (1938)

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

Directors:

Alfred L. Werker (as Alfred Werker), Otto Preminger (uncredited)

Writers:

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

Cast overview, first billed only:
Warner Baxter ... Alan Breck
Freddie Bartholomew ... David Balfour
Arleen Whelan ... Jean MacDonald
C. Aubrey Smith ... Duke of Argyle
Reginald Owen ... Captain Hoseason
John Carradine ... Gordon
Nigel Bruce ... Neil MacDonald
Miles Mander ... Ebenezer Balfour
Ralph Forbes ... James
H.B. Warner ... Angus Rankeillor
Arthur Hohl ... Riach
E.E. Clive ... Minister MacDougall
Halliwell Hobbes ... Dominie Campbell
Montagu Love ... Colonel Whitehead
Donald Haines ... Ransome
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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:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

27 May 1938 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Kidnapped: The Adventures of David Balfour See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$750,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Twentieth Century Fox See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(FMC Library Print)

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA High Fidelity Recording)

Color:

Black and White (Sepiatone)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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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

When Freddie Bartholemew is walking to Edinburgh, he passes a road sign showing "Edinboro" which would be an Americanized spelling of the city. See more »

Quotes

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

Connections

Version of Kidnapped (1971) 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

 
Robert Louis Stevenson Adventure Film
10 February 2000 | by Ron OliverSee all my reviews

A young Scotsman, on his way to becoming laird of his family property, instead finds himself in the very thick of his country's rebellion against the English, hunted & harried & in constant peril, after his evil uncle has him KIDNAPPED.

This is a fairly good adventure film which, now and again, actually includes some of the original plot as penned in the famous novel by Robert Louis Stevenson. Action scenes are well done, but the wholly unnecessary romantic subplot gets very much in the way.

Warner Baxter is completely miscast as the great literary hero, Alan Breck; he doesn't even attempt to act Scots and his accent is pure Yankee. One wonders what Fox Studio had in mind. In the supporting cast was a star from silent screen days, British actor Ralph Forbes, who could have given the role more authority & punch. Instead, Forbes is given a tiny part & disappears quickly.

Freddie Bartholomew does a fine job as young David Balfour and there is an excellent supporting cast of sterling character players of the period: John Carradine, Nigel Bruce, Mary Gordon, Halliwell Hobbes, E. E. Clive, Montague Love, H. B. Warner & Eily Maylon. Reginald Owen is especially good as an old rapscallion of a sea captain, while Sir C. Aubrey Smith scores as a wise old duke.


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