39 Steps, The

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39 Steps, The

  • 1935 ----- b & w ----- 87 min ----- 16mm/laserdisc
  • (Directed by Alfred Hitchcock; with Robert Donat, Madeleine Carroll, Godfrey Tearle, Helen Haye) The film that established Hitchcock as master of the mystery-spy genre, The 39 Steps is jam-packed with his inventive techniques, matching sound and visuals perfectly. His casting of the film is as brilliant as his astounding camera setups and hair-raising scenes, matching the suave, handsome, and intellectual Donat to the blonde, intelligent, and detached Carroll, the first blonde who was a real Hitchcock type. Hitchcock was up to his usual pranks in the production. Carroll and Donat had never met until the first day of shooting when Hitchcock promptly locked them up with handcuffs to get them used to the idea, then disappeared for the whole day, returning to face angry stars. Out of all the eccentricity and inventiveness came a film full of rapid-fire chases, wonderful hair's-breadth escapes, and muscular narrative sequences, marvelously shot against backgrounds that lent strength and logic to the drama. (Funded by the Department of Comparative Literature) (Laserdisc Restricted to use on University of Washington campuses only)
  • Topics: (Literature: English, Motion Pictures: Features, Motion Pictures: History)