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NIGHT TRAIN TO MUNICH
1940, 20th Century Fox, 90 min, UK, Dir: Carol Reed

Director Carol Reed (THE THIRD MAN, ODD MAN OUT) was no stranger to superb, edge-of-your-seat entertainments, and he supplies all the elements here in one of his earliest, comparatively lesser-known outings. British agent Rex Harrison tries to spirit a refugee Czech scientist back to England after the Nazis kidnap him as well as his newly arrived daughter (Margaret Lockwood). With Paul Henried, Naunton Wayne and Basil Radford.


THE LADY VANISHES
1938, Park Circus/MGM, 97 min, UK, Dir: Alfred Hitchcock

No one believes witty playgirl Iris Henderson (a fine Margaret Lockwood) when she claims the elderly “governess” Miss Froy has mysteriously disappeared from a train en route from the fictional country of Bandrika to Western Europe. No one, except for charming Gilbert (Michael Redgrave), who joins forces with Iris to expose the foreboding magic trick of a woman vanishing into thin air on a moving locomotive. Featuring mesmerizing overlapping camera work by cinematographer Jack Cox and a script loaded with can’t-believe-that-slid-past-the-censors political doozies, THE LADY VANISHES is so much more than its usual branding as “light entertainment” - it’s Hitchcock at his pre-Hollywood best, a perfect blend of suspense and screwball.Watch for Naunton Wayne and Basil Radford as two cricket-obsessed fellow passengers - their pairing here was so successful, they co-starred in a further 10 films playing essentially the same characters!


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