The 39 Steps (1935)

Unrated  |   |  Mystery, Thriller  |  1 August 1935 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.8/10 from 38,179 users  
Reviews: 208 user | 96 critic

A man in London tries to help a counterespionage agent. But when the agent is killed and the man stands accused, he must go on the run to both save himself and also stop a spy ring which is trying to steal top secret information.



(adapted from the novel by), (adaptation), 1 more credit »
Watch Trailer
0Check in

Watch Now

Free at Internet Archive

1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »



Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Certificate: Passed Comedy | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

While traveling in continental Europe, a rich young playgirl realizes that an elderly lady seems to have disappeared from the train.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: Margaret Lockwood, Michael Redgrave, Paul Lukas
Crime | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A man and his wife receive a clue to an imminent assassination attempt, only to learn that their daughter has been kidnapped to keep them quiet.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: Leslie Banks, Edna Best, Peter Lorre
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

A young woman discovers her visiting "Uncle Charlie" may not be the man he seems to be.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: Teresa Wright, Joseph Cotten, Macdonald Carey
Saboteur (1942)
Thriller | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Aircraft factory worker Barry Kane goes on the run across the United States when he is wrongly accused of starting a fire that killed his best friend.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: Priscilla Lane, Robert Cummings, Otto Kruger
Lifeboat (1944)
Thriller | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

Several survivors of a torpedoed ship find themselves in the same boat with one of the men who sunk it.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: Tallulah Bankhead, John Hodiak, Walter Slezak
Suspicion (1941)
Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A shy young heiress marries a charming gentleman, and soon begins to suspect he is planning to murder her.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: Cary Grant, Joan Fontaine, Cedric Hardwicke
Spellbound (1945)
Film-Noir | Mystery | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A psychiatrist protects the identity of an amnesia patient accused of murder while attempting to recover his memory.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: Ingrid Bergman, Gregory Peck, Michael Chekhov
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A family vacationing in Morocco accidentally stumble on to an assassination plot and the conspirators are determined to prevent them from interfering.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: James Stewart, Doris Day, Brenda de Banzie
Sabotage (1936)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A Scotland Yard undercover detective is on the trail of a saboteur who is part of a plot to set off a bomb in London. But when the detective's cover is blown, the plot begins to unravel.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: Sylvia Sidney, Oskar Homolka, Desmond Tester
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

The trouble with Harry is that he's dead, and everyone seems to have a different idea of what needs to be done with his body...

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: John Forsythe, Shirley MacLaine, Edmund Gwenn
The Wrong Man (1956)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

True story of an innocent man mistaken for a criminal.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: Henry Fonda, Vera Miles, Anthony Quayle
I Confess (1953)
Crime | Film-Noir | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Refusing to give into police investigators' questions of suspicion, due to the seal of confession, a priest becomes the prime suspect in a murder.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: Montgomery Clift, Anne Baxter, Karl Malden


Complete credited cast:
Godfrey Tearle ...
Helen Haye ...
Mrs. Jordan
Frank Cellier ...
The Sheriff
Gus McNaughton ...
Commercial Traveller (as Gus Mac Naughton)
Jerry Verno ...
Commercial Traveller
Peggy Simpson ...


Richard Hannay is a Canadian visitor to London. At the end of "Mr Memory"'s show in a music hall, he meets Annabella Smith who is running away from secret agents. He accepts to hide her in his flat, but in the night she is murdered. Fearing he could be accused on the girl's murder, Hannay goes on the run to break the spy ring. Written by Claudio Sandrini <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


The Most Charming Brute Who Ever Scorned A Lady See more »


Mystery | Thriller


Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

1 August 1935 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Les 39 marches  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(British Acoustic Film Full Range Recording System: at Shepherd's Bush London)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


This was Alfred Hitchcock's follow-up to his first international success, The Man Who Knew Too Much (1934). It proved to be just as successful, quickly establishing the director as a box-office draw. See more »


Mr. Memory stops speaking and flinches before the shot is fired. See more »


[first lines]
Music hall announcer: Ladies and Gentleman, with your kind attention, and permission, I have the honor of presenting to you one of the most remarkable men in the world.
Heckler in Audience: How remarkable? He's sweating!
See more »


Referenced in Hitchcock: The Early Years (1999) See more »


We Shall Win
Arranged by Charles Williams
Played by Salvation Army band
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

One of the finest films ever released.
18 June 2003 | by (Todmorden, England) – See all my reviews

The Thirty Nine Steps is extraordinary in every conceivabe way. Anyone who doesn't mind slightly old, black-and-white movies will be enraptured by this Hitchcock classic, which was one of the first films to present sophisticated and witty banter between two ill-matched characters. What makes it even more extraordinary is that it virtually totally alters the source material (John Buchan's novel), yet still comes across as a work of ingenuity.

The story concerns Richard Hannay (Robert Donat) a handsome young man who owns a London flat. A mysterious woman comes to him for help, claiming that she is being hunted by some spies. Hannay helps her, but when she is murdered in his home it look like he is to blame, and he has to go on the run from the police (who obviously want him for the "crime") and the spies (who want him to find out how much he actually knows). En route, he has many adventures as he flees across the South Scotland landscapes, including being handcuffed to a woman (Madeline Carroll) who happens to think he is guilty of the murder.

This is splendid from the word "go". It has enough memorable set pieces for a dozen films, its pace is invigorating, the plot is constantly turning up new surprises, and the performances are just about perfect. Hitchcock spent his career narrating tale of innocent men on the run (indeed, many consider it to be his "favourite" theme) and this is one of the very finest examples of that. Anyone interested in Hitchcock or cinema of the '30s simply must, must, must see this film.

47 of 61 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Why does the DVD looks rubbish, but the TV broadcast looks fine? clivey6
Chucking pieces of ham on the floor?? Maureen5
Old enough to Apprecitate but too old to Enjoy Falzone_Salv
Who is *really* Richard Hannay? luim_07
The 39 Steps - THE PLAY Sproketer
Discuss The 39 Steps (1935) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: