Alfred Hitchcock

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        North by Northwest (1959)
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        We are based in South London near Croydon, UK, and if preferred this item can be picked up by appointment. Just e-mail here. I also welcome the old fashioned cheque and po as it is cheaper to process and all orders are sent off same day as cheque received. Trivia added. UK Dvd Gallery added.

        Movie Review - Cast & Crew - Dvd Features - Dvd Technical Details - Buy Dvd - Buy Blu-Ray - North by Northwest Repro. Film Posters

        north by northwest dvd

        • Dvd Release Date: 09-04-2001
        • Region: 2 (UK & Europe)
        • Number of Discs: 1

        • Catalogue Number: D065016
        • Studio: Warner Bros

          Considered by many to be the prototypical pure action movie (creating the template for later James Bond and Indiana Jones films), North by Northwest is a cross-country roller-coaster ride with Alfred Hitchcock at the helm.

        North by Northwest is the Alfred Hitchcock classic mixture - suspense, intrigue, comedy, humour. Seldom has the concoction been served up as delectably. Hitchcock uses actual locations - the Plaza in New York, the Ambassador East in Chicago, Grand Central Station, the 20th Century, Limited, United Nations headquarters in Manhattan, Mount Rushmore National Monument, the plains of Indiana. One scene, where the hero is ambushed by an airplane on the flat, sun-baked prairie, is a brilliant use of location and now classic moment in cinema.

        Cary Grant brings technique and charm to the central character. He is a Madison Avenue man-about-Manhattan, sleekly handsome, carelessly twice-divorced, debonair as a cigaret ad. The story gets underway when he's mistaken for a US intelligence agent by a pack of foreign agents headed by James Mason. The complications are staggering but they play like an Olympic version of a three-legged race.

        Grant's problem is to avoid getting knocked off by Mason's gang without tipping them that he is a classic case of the innocent bystander. The case is serious, but Hitchcock's macabre sense of humor and iinstinct for romantic byplay never allows it to stay grim for too long. Suspense is deliberately broken for relief and then skillfully re-established.

        Eva Marie Saint dives headfirst into Mata Hari and shows she can be unexpectedly and thoroughly glamorous. She also manages difficult impression of seeming basically innocent while explaining how she becomes Mason's mistress. Mason, in a rather stock role, is properly forbidding.

        Robert Burks' photography, whether in the hot yellows of the prairie plain, or the soft green of South Dakota forests, is lucid and imaginatively composed. It was the first Metro release in VistaVision. Bernard Hermann's score is a tingling one, particularly in the Mount Rushmore sequences, but light where mood requires.

        North by Northwest is a suspense thriller that finds Cary Grant in the role of Roger Thornhill, a Manhattan advertising executive mistaken for a spy. Considered by many to be the prototypical pure action movie (creating the template for later James Bond and Indiana Jones films), the film is a cross-country roller-coaster ride with Alfred Hitchcock at the helm. The film is duly famous for several classic and indelible scenes, including the desert biplane encounter and the Mt. Rushmore climax. The original title was The Man in Lincoln's Nose, which was replaced by a reference to a line from William Shakespeare's Hamlet (in which Hamlet says, "I am but mad north-north-west."). The magical combination of Hitchcock and the debonair Grant--who made four wonderful films together--makes North by Northwest a suspense-filled standout.

          The Master Of Suspense Presents A 3000-Mile Chase Across America!

        When Thornhill finds himself in the wrong place at the wrong time, the world as he knows it comes to an end. Suddenly danger threatens as the hapless businessman is targeted as an American intelligence agent and set up as a killer. All of Thornhill's attempts to straighten things out only make matters worse--and soon the desperate man is on the run from murderous foreign operatives, the CIA, and the police. The supporting cast, including Eva Marie Saint, James Mason, and Martin Landau, is uniformly excellent.

        The best film ever? Gotta be up there. For sheer entertainment alone it's a class apart.

        Cary Grant teams with Hitchcock for the fourth and final time in this superlative espionage caper judged one of the American Film Institute's Top 100 American Films and spruced up with a new digital transfer and remixed Dolby Surround Stereo.

        Grant plays a Manhattan advertising executive plunged into a realm of spy (James Mason) and counterspy (Eva Marie Saint) and variously abducted, framed for murder, chased and, in another signature set piece, crop-dusted. He also holds on for dear life from that famed carved rock (for which back lot sets were used). But don't expect the Master Of Suspense to leave star or audience hanging.


        • 1959: Nominations:
          Best Original Story & Screenplay, Color Art Direction, Editing

      • Actors:

      • Dir/Prod:
      • Scr:
          Ernest Lehman
      • Ph:
          Robert Burks
      • Ed:
          George Tomasini
      • Mus:
          Bernard Herrmann
      • Art Dir:
          Robert Boyle, William A. Horning


        Dvd Special Features

          Original Theatrical Trailer
          Destination Hitchcock: The Making of North by Northwest, Hosted By Eva Marie Saint (39 minutes)
          Feature-length audio commentary by Screenwriter Ernest Lehman
          TV Spot
          Still Gallery
          Music Only Track DD (2.0) Stereo

        Technical Details

          Certificate: PG
          Year: 1959
          Screen: Widescreen 1.78:1 Anamorphic
          Languages: English ; French - Dolby Digital (5.1)
          Subtitles: Arabic ; Dutch ; English ; English for the hearing impaired ; French ; German ; Italian
          Duration: 2 hours and 10 minutes (approx)
          Region: Region 2 - Will only play on European Region 2 or multi-region DVD players.


      • Poster: 'From the killer plane in the cornfield to the cliff-hanger on George Washington's nose, it's suspense in every direction!' 'Only Cary Grant and Alfred Hitchcock ever gave you so much suspense.'

      • It is classic Hitchcock from start to finish. The Innocent Man on the run - again.

      • The composer of the music, Bernard Herrmann, also composed the soundtracks for The Trouble with Harry, The Man Who Knew Too Much, Vertigo, Psycho and Marnie. He was also the 'sound consultant' for The Birds.

      • The titles designer, Saul Brass, also provided innovative titles for Vertigo and Psycho. He is also credited with storyboarding Psycho's shower scene.

      • Hitchcock Cameo: Missing a bus at the end of the opening titles.

      • Jessica Royce Landis, here playing Cary Grant's mother, had earlier played Grace Kelly's mother in To Catch a Thief. Leo G Carroll can also be seen in Hitchcock's Rebecca, Suspicion, Spellbound, and The Paradine Case.

      • Vandamm's cliff-top mansion clearly mimics the style of the architect Frank Lloyd Wright.

      • James Stewart wanted to star in the film but after poor box-office returns for Vertigo Hitchcock considered Stewart 'looked too old.'

      • The studio's original choice for the part played by Eva Marie Saint had been Cyd Charisse. It was Hitch's decision to cast Eva Marie Saint.

      • My Favourite Line: Vandamm, on discovering Eve's treachery: 'This matter is best disposed of from a great height. Over water.'

      • Near the start of the movie, when Roger enters the Plaza Hotel, an orchestra can be heard playing the melody 'It's a Most Unusual Day'.

      • Considering it's now considered one of the greatest movies ever made, the paper reviews at the time were decidedly lukewarm. For example, The Times thought they had seen it all before in The 39 Steps.

      • Hitchcock had severe trouble in gaining permission to film in the places he wated to. He had to smuggle a concealed camera into the lobby of the United Nations in order to film Cary Grant's arrival. And of course the problems with the Mount Rushmore National Monument have now passed into folklore. When the press discovered he had asked to shoot there, they were appalled. One newspaper editor suggested Hitch go back to Britain and make a film about someone climbing over the Queen's face.

      • The final chase scene was not shot on Mt. Rushmore; after the press outcry there was no way Hitch could gain permission to shoot an attempted murder on a national monument. The scene was shot in the studio on a replica of Mt. Rushmore. Everything is shot carefully, so as to avoid associating the faces of the monument with the violence.

      • Jessie Royce Landis played Thornhill's (Cary Grant's) mother, yet in real life he was only 7 years younger than her (and for many years Jessie stated she was born the same year, 1904, as Grant). As handsome as Grant was, this does look odd in the film, with Landis looking more like a wife than a mother!

      • Hitchcock denied the misquote from Hamlet played any part in the naming of the film as I stated above.

      • If you watch the film take a closer look at Grant He appears on the left side of the screen for almost the entire movie. Indeed, he's usually in the top left of the frame. Add to that his direction of travel is consistently in a northwesterly direction. What's more, he travels from Chicago to Mount Rushmore on Northwest Airlines.

      • While on location, Eva Marie Saint discovered that Cary Grant would charge fans 25 cents for an autograph! Wow! That must be one of the bargains of the century! Today, a genuine Grant signature sells for hundreds of pounds. If you could only go back in time to the making of the movie, you'd spent the whole day around Grant asking him to sign until he can write no more!

        Source: The Ultimate book on the films of Hitchcock: Complete Hitchcock

        Official UK release - details below.

        July 2014: back in stock.

        Below are scans from the UK. Useful to look at back cover for details such as subtitles and special features sometimes missed in the text above. Click on each for bigger scans.

        Condition: Used - very good.


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      • Price: 7.99 UK Sterling
        (Shipped from UK) (Price includes UK postage & packaging only. Outside UK here)

        July 14: back in stock. Used - very good (see scans)

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      • Price: $22.99 US Dollars.
        (Shipped from UK) (Price includes Outside UK Air Mail postage & packaging only.

        This is a Region 2 UK & Europe Dvd and will probaly not work on a US Dvd player. It should work on an Australian one but wherever you are outside Europe please check your Dvd player can play Region 2 Dvds.

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      • Also available as part of the Hitchcock Dvd Collection
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        North by Northwest (1959) UK Official Blu-ray

        Please Note: This title is in high definition format and needs to be played on a Blu-ray player

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        • Release Date: 16-11-2009
        • Format: BLU-RAY
        • Catalogue Number: 1000102021
        • Label: Warner Bros

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      • Price: 15.99 (UK Sterling)
        (Shipped from UK. Still sealed) (Price includes UK postage & packaging. Outside UK please e-mail here with country ordering from for postage quote)

      • Payment can also be made to Lenin Imports by cheque, po, money order, international money order, cash by registered mail. Please enclose title of item ordering and return address.


          Lenin Imports
          5 High Street
          South Norwood
          SE25 6EP
          United Kingdom

      • Back to Top of Page

        movie poster

      • North by Northwest Posters:
        Repro. worldwide film release posters at affordable prices!


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