Kidnapped (1960)

 | 10+ 
Cautions: mild violence, mild ethical confusion, and brief language

Kidnapped is a swashbuckling Scottish adventure brought to life in a style that’s fun, appropriate for almost any age, and true to the spirit of Robert Louis Stevenson’s classic novel.  While the production quality isn’t exactly optimum, and while bagpipes may not be universally appreciated, for lovers of Scotland and fans of Disney’s old family movies, Kidnapped, with its righteous but naïve hero, dastardly villains, fiery Highland rebels, sword fights and bagpipe duels, is sure to please.

1960 | Robert Stevenson | 97 min

Mild Violence
A young boy is killed off screen.  He is heard arguing with an older man and then screaming once.  This is a brief scene.

Men are shot to death, but not in particularly intense or gory ways.

There are a few mild sword, pistol and knife fights.

A young man almost falls from a great height.

A boat is wrecked, and it is said that all the men are now at the bottom of the sea.

There is brief, non-sensational talk about hanging, stabbing and slashing heads off.

Mild Ethical Confusion
The principle side character, Alan Breck Stewart, is a very interesting character, and is half the time positively-portrayed and half the time negatively-portrayed.  Among his negative character traits are vanity, lying, a hot temper, and a firm belief that revenge is not forbidden by Christianity.

The story is set in a society very heavily influenced by Christianity, so both good and evil characters reference God or Providence frequently.  The less-than-orthodox Alan Breck Stewart claims something like the Golden Rule as the motivation for his misunderstood actions, and says that that is “the good Christianity.”  David, understanding his point, replies, “I’ll not say it’s the good Christianity, but it’s good enough.”

Being chased and shot at by soldiers for a crime they didn’t commit, David and Alan briefly contemplate stealing a boat to make their escape.

Though a devoted subject of King George, David, when in the home of a man of different politics, consents to drink a toast to the pretender to the throne.

Brief Language
What in the devil’s name

Alan Breck Stewart swears an oath “by the holy iron”, making a cross symbol from his hand and his knife.

A woman curses (not as a magic spell, but as the opposite of blesses) the villain’s house.  He later angrily claims that she is a witch.  Passing references to “luck” and “an omen” are made by negatively portrayed characters.

After being taken in by a crook, the main character claims that he’d sooner die than give the extortioner a penny more.

Side characters gamble at cards, but this is negatively portrayed.

The phrase “love affair” is used simply to mean events circumstantially connected with love.

Positively-portrayed characters drink small amounts of alcohol.  A few characters drink to excess, but this is always portrayed very negatively.

Pipe smoking is briefly seen.

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