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The 39 Steps

Richard Hannay goes out for some light entertainment one night, which is interrupted when shots ring out in the theater. He soon ends up with a mysterious woman in his arms, who reveals that she's a spy trying to track down a cabal that's going to sell British military secrets. Before the night is out, she's dead and Hannay is on the run. All he knows about his hunters is that they have something to do with the mysterious "39 Steps" and the group's leader is missing the tip of a finger. Alfred Hitchcock's 1935 thriller The 39 Steps was ground zero for many of his most popular themes. There's a MacGuffin (the unexplained military secrets), the arrival of a beautiful blonde (Madeline Carroll) who wants nothing to do our hero (despite being handcuffed to him at one point) and the everyday man (Robert Donat) who is forced to flee for his life. The Classics in the Loop film series presents The 39 Steps at 4 and 7 p.m. Monday, March 2, at the Landmark Tivoli Theatre (6350 Delmar Boulevard, University City; Tickets are $7.25.

— Paul Friswold

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