Screen Two: Season 2, Episode 1

The McGuffin (12 Jan. 1986)

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Title: The McGuffin (12 Jan 1986)

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Paul Hatcher
Ann Todd ...
Mrs. Forbes-Duthie
Bill Shine ...
From The Rear Window
Neville Phillips ...
From The Rear Window
Paul McKenzie ...
From The Rear Window
Ray Shell ...
From The Rear Window
Francis Matthews ...
Silver-Haired Gent
Stephen Ruff ...
David Power (as Roger Lloyd-Pack)
Sue Peacock ...
Brian Glover ...
Man in Brown


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From Voyeur To Victim....





Release Date:

12 January 1986 (UK)  »

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Did You Know?


In his 1966 interview with director-film critic, François Truffaut, Alfred Hitchcock said: It might be a Scottish name, taken from a story about two man in a train. One man says "What's that package up there in the baggage rack?" And the other answers, "O that's a McGuffin." The first one asks "What's a McGuffin?" "Well" the other man says, "Its an apparatus for trapping lions in the Scottish Highlands." The first man says, "But there are no lions in the Scottish Highlands," and the other one answers "Well then that's no McGuffin!" A McGuffin is nothing at all. Hitchcock used the term to describe a device or plot element that catches the viewer's attention or drives the logic of the plot, especially in suspense films. According to Hitchcock, the McGuffin can be ignored as soon as it has served its purpose. Examples are the mistaken identity at the beginning of North by Northwest (1959) and the entire Janet Leigh subplot of Psycho (1960). See more »


References Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence (1983) See more »

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User Reviews

Another Fuzzy 1980's British movie
7 September 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I will be glad to add my views of this movie - as part of my "Charles Dance Collection". I researched to find his films, and have now seen a few, obscure, movies that puzzle me. This one qualifies for my puzzlement. Dance is a good actor, who got stuck in many fuzzy 80's movies that were attempts to be "art" - and missed the mark, in my opinion (see "Hidden City" or "Shortcut to Paradise"). First, the homage to Hitchcock just got distracting. Second, there were no sympathetic characters. Third, not enough meaningful talking, which is something I keep finding in 80's British movies (not that there aren't plenty of silly American movies from the same period, mind you...) - and I know not all movies can be Merchant and Ivory - but I keep thinking Dance could have made more of a mark on cinema if he had been more mainstream Hollywood or British - I would love to know what happened that he was not. Maybe he chose more stage than film? In any case, this one was a disappointment to me, even for my eclectic side.

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