Saturday, June 11, 2016

The Duke of Wellington, Kidnapped!

Author: Alan Hirsch
Stars: 1
Review by: Mandy Apgar

Dull and rather obvious in its conclusions. In 1961 Goya's "The Duke of Wellington" (a painting) was stolen from the National Gallery in London without a trace. Nobody knew a thing until the elderly Kempton Bunton came forward four years later with the offer to turn himself in fearing that another was about to. Or so he said. Later acquitted of stealing the painting (but found guilty of taking the frame - I crap you not) Bunton did the inevitable "I was framed" etc. with the also inevitable memoirs later on. But really, he was an ill person and claimed he conducted the heist with a 5 shilling disguise and a getaway car manned by a drunk? That's less probable than the one legged potential jewel robber in To Catch a Thief and inevitably that was how things turned out. The actual thief was Bunton's much younger son John who has basically gotten away scott free. My first problem was that the author tended a bit too much into Ocean's 12 theatrics. We don't really know everything that happened so there is no sense in making things sound more glamorous than they were. Second problem - it really should be painfully obvious that Kempton had nothing to do with the crime based on his physical limitations. He just literally could not do what he said. And third - far too much time was spent psychoanalyzing father and son. We know what they did already. Quit trying to pad the book out.

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