The 39 Steps

Film, Thrillers
A still from the black and white film The 39 Steps of a man holding his hand over a woman's mouth in the entrance of a tunnel

Time Out says

Other English Hitchcocks may be more provocative, but few offer such a ripping good yarn. Donat's smooth and upright Richard Hannay flees from London in pursuit of a spy ring, responsible for leaving a murdered woman in his flat; the police inevitably take him for the murderer, and the spies are after him too. His itinerary includes an overnight stop in John Laurie's crofter's cottage, a political meeting where he improvises a speech without knowing who or what he's supporting, and a period when he's handcuffed to the resentful heroine. It ends, suitably, in a music hall. The inspiration came from John Buchan's novel, though Hitchcock followed it at some distance, concocting with scriptwriter Charles Bennett what really amounts to a little anthology of Hitchcock stories and motifs. Great fun.

By: GB


Release details

86 mins

Cast and crew

Alfred Hitchcock
Ian Hay, Alma Reville, Charles Bennett
Robert Donat
Peggy Ashcroft
Godfrey Tearle
Lucie Mannheim
John Laurie
Madeleine Carroll
Helen Haye
Wylie Watson
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