6.6/10
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32 user 8 critic

The 39 Steps (1959)

Approved | | Comedy, Crime, Drama | 13 March 1959 (UK)
In London, a diplomat accidentally becomes involved in the death of a British agent who's after a spy ring that covets British military secrets.

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(screenplay), (based upon the novel by)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Richard Hannay
... Fisher
Brenda de Banzie ... Nellie Lumsden (as Brenda De Banzie)
... Professor Logan
Reginald Beckwith ... Lumsden
... Nannie
... Brown
... Mr. Memory
... Kennedy
Jameson Clark ... McDougal
Andrew Cruickshank ... Sheriff (as Andrew Cruikshank)
Leslie Dwyer ... Milkman
Betty Henderson ... Mrs. McDougal
... Miss Dobson
... Perce
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Storyline

Richard Hannay witnesses a hit-and-run involving a woman pushing a pram. Looking in the pram he sees a gun instead of a baby. He tracks the woman down and she reveals that she is a secret agent trying to stop foreign spies leaving the country with important military secrets. Later that night she is murdered in Hannay's flat. Hannay takes it on himself to thwart the enemy agents. This involves travelling to Scotland and keeping one step ahead of the police who are looking for him in connection with the murder of the woman. Written by ledostef, blackpool

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Taglines:

The Most Suspenseful Manhunt in History!


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

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Release Date:

13 March 1959 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

39 escalones  »

Filming Locations:

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Taina Elg was cast as the female lead after a number of British and American performers had passed on the role and the Rank Studios and Kenneth More had vetoed a number of others. See more »

Goofs

When Hannay is hiding in the cornfield a man is shooting rabbits, he fires three shots, however he is using a double barreled shotgun which would require re loading to fire a third shot. See more »

Quotes

Kennedy: [Staking out Hannay's flat] Have you ever tried suckling pig?
Brown: No.
Kennedy: Tender as a baby.
Brown: Haven't tried that either.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Call the Midwife: Episode #3.3 (2014) See more »

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User Reviews

Read the book
24 January 2001 | by See all my reviews

Having recently re-read John Buchan's (short) novel "The 39 Steps" and already owning the 1935 and 1959 videos, a reappraisal seemed appropriate. While the '59 version is a delightful movie, it is a long way removed from the novel. On screen, Kenneth More is more Kenneth More than Richard Hannay. There are one or two "I don't think so" scenes such as Perce's (Sid James) attitude to a wanted killer. But we'll let that pass. You have to look at the production in its own right, because as a movie version of the book, it just doesn't make it. The Hitchcock version was much better in that respect. However, the Kenneth More film is utterly enjoyable as a bit of light drama. Certainly the underlying plot is worthy and overall, I'd give it 7 out of 10.


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