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Films: T is for...

Thirty-Nine Steps, The

In which Gus van Zandt pours Daddies sauce on a selection of hats after discovering he’d been beaten to the shot-for-shot-only-nowhere-near-as-good Hitchcock remake trophy by no less than Ralph ‘Doctor at Sea/Percy’ Thomas. Kenneth More is the intrepid investigator, James ‘Mr. Tebbs, you know, the short-lived, toupeed Mr Grainger replacement off of Are You Being Served’ Hayter gets to reveal that the Thirty-Nine steps is indeed an organization, and Joan ‘is this Miss Marple week or something?’ Hickson, Sid James and Sam ‘Orlando’ Kydd all resolutely refuse to dangle precariously from the minute hand of Big Ben.

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Sidney Balmoral James

    October 18, 2020 at 9:19 pm

    Kenny’s great isn’t he? He could only play himself, but you can’t help liking him – probably a good definition of what a film star is. This has some great supporting turns in it – Andrew Cruikshank no less, as a slightly terrifying sheriff, Brenda de Banzie, and Reginald Beckwith as a pair of spiritualists, with an open marriage. Indeed, there’s quite a racy undercurrent to this whole film, with de Bongo (as Kenneth Williams dubbed her, not sure why) offering herself to Ken, and in the scene when he’s handcuffed to Tania Elg in the bedroom, helping her take her stockings off etc. Surprised this one hasn’t been remade by the Hollywood sausage machine, with the plank-like Mark Whalberg as Hannay – they gave him the Cary Grant role in that remake of Charade after all.

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