Movie Details

Alfred Hitchcock fans need not be reminded that "The McGuffin" is Hitchcock's term for the gimmicks (missing papers, stolen gems, uranium deposits) that motivate the plots of his thrillers. This much is explained by narrator Orson Welles at the beginning of the family-oriented The Double McGuffin. Hitchcock in-jokes abound in this innocuous adventure yarn, which stars Ernest Borgnine as an international terrorist (it's that kind of film). A bunch of kids in a sleepy Southern town tumble to Borgnine's scheme to assassinate a foreign prime minister, but of course the authorities don't believe a word. The kids decide to take matters into their own hands, which includes staging their own kidnapping to arouse the attention of the police. The film comes to a noisy climax during a school assembly, where the targeted prime minister is a keynote speaker. Like Ernest Borgnine, co-stars George Kennedy and Elke Sommer play their scenes straight, allowing full scope to the Saturday-matinee antics of the younger actors. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi