Synopsis by Eleanor Mannikka
The heavy fighting at the turn of the 20th century between the Dutch settlers in modern South Africa (Boers) and the British colonists is featured in this drama about a young British widow who had been married to a Boer. Between 1899 and 1902, the British in South Africa rose up against Dutch rule in certain areas, and after a year of fighting, the victorious British commander left for awhile. In his absence, Boer guerrilla fighters launched new attacks, and soon the British soldiers were back, burning Boer farms and herding the Boers into temporary concentration camps. That is the setting for this story which begins with British soldiers checking Boer farms to see if the people are hiding any guerrillas. When a young officer is told to go search a certain farm, he chooses the wrong one by mistake and not finding any hidden enemy fighters, he torches the place -- leaving the widowed British woman homeless with her two daughters (one daughter is pregnant). The three were meant to be consigned to a concentration camp, though these were normally reserved only for black Afrikaners, but they refuse and go back home where they receive some help from Boer soldiers. As the woman and her daughters resettle into a difficult life, fighting continues and is featured for the rest of this film -- with its effect on the three women. Visually attractive, but with average acting and somewhat anemic drama, Torn Allegiance fits better as a TV movie than a theatrical release.
war, anti-war, atrocity, family, survivor