Skip to content

Never one to shy away from controversial subject matter, the veteran Italian filmmaker Marco Bellocchio (Fists in the Pocket, The Conviction) here brings to life an unbelievable true story lifted from the pages of a shocking and horrifying history. The year is 1858. Following Pope Pius IX’s orders, soldiers burst into the Mortara family’s Bologna home to forcibly remove their six-year-old son Edgardo. This because they’d heard from the Jewish family’s maid that she had secretly baptised him as a sickly infant for fear that he would die a Jew and his soul would remain in limbo. As such, under the Church’s doctrine, the boy is no longer permitted to live with his non-Catholic family, and is taken to be raised by the Church itself. The distraught Mortara family try desperately to get Edgardo back, and the scandal soon makes its way across the country and Europe at large. As they embark on an international campaign to have their son returned, they find themselves at the epicentre of a wider historical battle between the forces of Catholic authoritarianism and the political awakening taking place across Italy and throughout Europe. With Kidnapped, the Palme d’Or-winning director creates a gripping portrait of a small Jewish community in turmoil, at the mercy of a hostile and all-powerful theocracy. The film unfolds like a historical fresco, or a Caravaggio come to life, as Bellocchio brings a problematic part of his nation’s past to the screen, which stands as a testament to the perennial need, and the courage it requires, to resist totalitarianism.

Member Discount

Members get 20% off this event!

Memberships Link icon

Sun 2 June


ART31 takes its name from Article 31 of the UN Convention on the Rights of a Child, which states that ‘Children have the right to relax and play, and to join in a wide range of cultural, artistic and other recreational activities’.

ART31 is a vision created with, by, and for young people in Kent, championing the belief that all children and young people have an entitlement to access high quality arts and culture, to empower them to achieve their creative potential, and to genuinely engage young people as equal partners in any decision making that affects them.

The ART31 Youth Board is made up of young people from across Kent aged 13-25 who steer its governance, and influence policy and practice across the county and beyond, challenging the creative sector to examine existing ways of working and integrate young people into the core of their practice.

Our projects with young people

Film tickets

See what other events are happening at the Gulbenkian
What's on Link icon