The Adventures of the Swiss Family Robinson
Emmy-winner Richard Thomas stars in this exciting family adventure based on Johann David Wyss’s timeless book. Join the shipwrecked Robinsons as they struggle together to make a new life on a remote desert island.
This is an entertaining and wonderful family film about survival, which thematically makes the point that getting through hardships can bring a family closer together. Starring the Emmy-award winning actor Richard Thomas as David Robinson, this film features a strong cast and good storytelling. Margo Gunn portrays his wife Elizabeth, and with their three children in tow, they embark on an adventure by ship as David has been hired to a new position for his father-in-law’s merchant and shipping business. However, it goes awry when a storm arises which forces everyone to bail out. Some survive including David and his family as they are the last to leave the ship and through a roughly fashioned raft make it to a nearby island.
However, the struggles are just beginning as the family has to find food, build a shelter (in the form of a tree house), and fend against pirates and a survivor from the ship named Parsons (K.C. Kelly), who blames David for his brother’s death. However, not all is bleak as David and Elizabeth’s daughter Joanna finds romance on the island with a young man named Ben, and eldest son Ernst finds it with a young Asian woman named Emily Chan.
Eventually the family is rescued, but then they have to deal with readjusting to civilized life in Boston. This includes dealing with a murder charge against David and Emily’s former betrothed—a powerful man who is willing to let Ernst have her—for a high price.
The various themes of pulling together for survival, love and romance, and sacrifice make for a good family viewing experience. We are awarding the film our Dove Seal for ages 12+ due to the thematic elements of violence and a few utterances of language. Parents should consult our content listing as some may be fine watching the movie with their children that are a bit under age 12. This is a nice presentation of a classic tale, and well worth the time it takes to view it.