IMDb > The Lady Vanishes (1938)
The Lady Vanishes
Quicklinks
Top Links
trailers and videosfull cast and crewtriviaofficial sitesmemorable quotes
Overview
main detailscombined detailsfull cast and crewcompany credits
Awards & Reviews
user reviewsexternal reviewsawardsuser ratingsparents guidemessage board
Plot & Quotes
plot summarysynopsisplot keywordsmemorable quotes
Did You Know?
triviagoofssoundtrack listingcrazy creditsalternate versionsmovie connectionsFAQ
Other Info
box office/businessrelease datesfilming locationstechnical specsliterature listingsNewsDesk
Promotional
taglines trailers and videos posters photo gallery
External Links
showtimesofficial sitesmiscellaneousphotographssound clipsvideo clips

The Lady Vanishes (1938) More at IMDbPro »

Photos (See all 39 | slideshow) Videos (see all 3)
The Lady Vanishes -- While traveling in continental Europe, a rich young playgirl realizes that an elderly lady seems to have disappeared from the train.
The Lady Vanishes -- Trailer for The Lady Vanishes

Overview

User Rating:
8.0/10   30,004 votes »
Your Rating:
Saving vote...
Deleting vote...
/10   (delete | history)
Sorry, there was a problem
MOVIEmeter: ?
Down 7% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Director:
Writers:
Ethel Lina White (based upon the story: "The Wheel Spins" by)
Sidney Gilliat (screen play) ...
(more)
Contact:
View company contact information for The Lady Vanishes on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
1 November 1938 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
Spies! Playing the game of love - and sudden death!
Plot:
While traveling in continental Europe, a rich young playgirl realizes that an elderly lady seems to have disappeared from the train. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Awards:
2 wins See more »
User Reviews:
the best of the early Hitchcock films See more (164 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (verified as complete)
Margaret Lockwood ... Iris Henderson

Michael Redgrave ... Gilbert

Paul Lukas ... Dr. Hartz

Dame May Whitty ... Miss Froy
Cecil Parker ... Mr. Todhunter
Linden Travers ... 'Mrs.' Todhunter / 'Mrs' Todhunter
Naunton Wayne ... Caldicott
Basil Radford ... Charters
Mary Clare ... Baroness
Emile Boreo ... Hotel Manager

Googie Withers ... Blanche
Sally Stewart ... Julie
Philip Leaver ... Signor Doppo
Selma Vaz Dias ... Signora Doppo (as Zelma Vas Dias)
Catherine Lacey ... The Nun (as Catherine Lacy)
Josephine Wilson ... Madame Kummer / Mme. Kummer
Charles Oliver ... The Officer
Kathleen Tremaine ... Anna
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Alfred Hitchcock ... Man in London Railway Station (uncredited)
Roy Russell ... Violinist (uncredited)
Create a character page for: ?

Directed by
Alfred Hitchcock 
 
Writing credits
Ethel Lina White (based upon the story: "The Wheel Spins" by)

Sidney Gilliat (screen play) (as Sidney Gilliatt) and
Frank Launder (screen play)

Produced by
Edward Black .... producer (uncredited)
 
Original Music by
Louis Levy (uncredited)
Charles Williams (uncredited)
 
Cinematography by
Jack E. Cox (photography) (as Jack Cox)
 
Film Editing by
R.E. Dearing 
 
Set Decoration by
Alex Vetchinsky (settings) (as Vetchinsky)
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Roy Ward Baker .... assistant director (uncredited)
Tom D. Connochie .... first assistant director (uncredited)
 
Art Department
Maurice Carter .... assistant set designer (uncredited)
Albert Jullion .... assistant set designer (uncredited)
Albert Whitlock .... scenic artist (uncredited)
 
Sound Department
Sydney Wiles .... recording (as S. Wiles)
Claude Hitchcock .... sound assistant (uncredited)
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Leslie Gilliat .... camera operator (uncredited)
Len Harris .... camera assistant (uncredited)
Leo Harris .... assistant camera (uncredited)
Maurice Oakley .... location photographer (uncredited)
Jack Parry .... location photographer (uncredited)
 
Editorial Department
Alfred Roome .... cutting
 
Music Department
Louis Levy .... musical director
Cecil Milner .... orchestrator (uncredited)
 
Other crew
Alma Reville .... continuity
 
Crew verified as complete


Production Companies
  • Gainsborough Pictures (presents) (as GB Pictures) (as A 'Gainsborough' picture) (as A Gainsborough Picture also)
DistributorsOther Companies
  • Excelsior Films  Googie Withers by permission of (as Excelsior Film Productions Ltd.)
Create a character page for: ?

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
96 min
Country:
Language:
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (British Acoustic Film Full - Range Recording: at Islington, London)
Certification:
Argentina:13 | Australia:PG (alternate rating) | Australia:G (original rating) | Canada:PG | Chile:14 | Finland:K-12 (1995) | Germany:12 | Netherlands:14 (original rating) (1939) | Peru:14 | Portugal:M/12 | Singapore:PG | South Korea:15 (2003) | Spain:T | Sweden:15 | UK:A (original rating) | UK:U (tv rating) | UK:U (video rating) (1986) (1993) (1998) (2002) (2003) (2004) (2005) | USA:Passed (National Board of Review) | USA:Approved (PCA #02144) | USA:TV-G (TV rating) | West Germany:16 (f)

Did You Know?

Trivia:
Although he uses the fictitious Bandrikan language when speaking to his staff, at the end of the phone conversation in which he conveys Iris's room service order for "champagne", Boris, the harassed hotel manager, exclaims, "Oy vey is mir", a Yiddish expression meaning "woe is me."See more »
Goofs:
Continuity: The way Iris leans on her pillow when Gilbert enters her room changes between shots.See more »
Quotes:
Iris Henderson:I was having tea about an hour ago with an English lady. You saw her, didn't you?
Charters:Well, I don't know, I mean, I was talking to my friend, wasn't I?
Caldicott:Indubitably.
Iris Henderson:Yes, but you were sitting at the next table. She turned and borrowed the sugar. You must remember.
Charters:Yes, I recall passing the sugar.
Iris Henderson:Well then you saw her.
Charters:I repeat we were deep in conversation. We were discussing cricket.
Iris Henderson:Well, I don't see how a thing like cricket can make you forget seeing people.
Charters:Oh, don't you? If that's your attitude, there's nothing more to be said! Come Caldicott. "A thing like cricket!"
[...]
See more »
Movie Connections:
Soundtrack:
Colonel Bogey MarchSee more »

FAQ

What are the differences between the old Criterion DVD edition and the Original Version?
In what other movies have Basil Radford and Naunton Wayne appeared together?
How does the movie end?
See more »
41 out of 61 people found the following review useful.
the best of the early Hitchcock films, 4 February 2001
Author: Dtkoyzis from Ontario, Canada

This is the best of the early Hitchcock films. The plot is absorbing, the dialogue clever and the cast great. Whether or not this was the first of the director's films to place its principal action on a moving train I cannot say, but it's a theme that would come back again in his later work, most notably in "Strangers on a Train."

The film gets off to a somewhat rocky start with the camera panning over an Alpine inn and a train halted mid-journey by an avalanche. I agree with the review who observes that we've become spoilt by more sophisticated special effects. A Lionel half buried in a heap of bleached wheat flower just doesn't cut it nowadays. Think also of the stick figure engulfed in the munitions factory explosion in "Saboteur." I suppose directors of that era had to do with whatever was available.

But after this point the film really takes off, and one scarcely recalls the unpromising opening. Viewers always look for the chemistry or lack thereof between actors. Well, Lockwood and Redgrave definitely have it. One cannot help but enjoy seeing how the initial sparks flying between their clashing characters develop into true love by movie's end. As the two are making their way through the train trying to locate Whitty, they move from one barely plausible predicament to another. But we love it, as one witty exchange turns quickly into another. (For example, Lockwood is asked to describe the missing Whitty and launches into an extremely detailed portrait that leaves not a single button unaccounted for. Then she ends by saying, "That's all I can remember." Counters Redgrave dryly: "Well, you can't have been paying attention.")

Much of the film's action occurs in the fictional country of Bandrika, which seems to be a thinly disguised stand-in for nazi-controlled Austria, so recently annexed by Hitler's Germany. As an amateur linguist, I found myself trying to make sense of the made-up "Bandrikan" spoken by the natives, but of course was unable to do so. (What could it be? A Finno-Ugric language? :) Most of the time the identity of Hitchcock's villains remains deliberately vague, except in "Notorious" and "Torn Curtain," where they are nazis and communists respectively. It works better when he leaves us guessing.

As an amateur musician I loved Hitch's "macguffin," namely, the secret formula encoded in a song which the protagonists had to memorize and carry to the Foreign Office in London. (I should think, however, that a genuine secret message might translate into something more like Schoenberg's twelve-tone music than a central European folk song, but of course that would hardly work in a film. :)

The early Hitchcock seemed to like shootouts, as seen also in the first version of "The Man Who Knew Too Much." But shootouts are an ineffective way to convey suspense, and this is perhaps the one thing that dims what is otherwise a masterpiece.

It's too bad the director lived long enough to see this film remade in 1979. Cybil Shepherd is no Margaret Lockwood, and it's pretty unpleasant-almost embarrassing-to see her shrieking her way through each scene. Couldn't they have waited a few years until he had passed on? They ought to have let him die in peace.

Was the above review useful to you?
See more (164 total) »

Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for The Lady Vanishes (1938)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
Questions about trains in UK mickeyone
I am still in shock - of how boring this movie is PiranianRose
Other train movies? oana5874
That melody practicepiano
Two twits in bed together jawebster2000
Never desert a lady in trouble rzeznik1085
See more »

Recommendations

If you enjoyed this title, our database also recommends:
- - - - -
The 39 Steps So Sweet, So Dead Munich Marie Galante Casablanca
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
Show more recommendations

Related Links

Full cast and crew Company credits External reviews
News articles IMDb Comedy section IMDb UK section

You may report errors and omissions on this page to the IMDb database managers. They will be examined and if approved will be included in a future update. Clicking the 'Edit page' button will take you through a step-by-step process.