1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Here we go again...,
This review is from: The 39 Steps [DVD] (DVD)
This drama is all right, but nothing more though. Enjoy it for its good production and acting, but not for its adherence to John Buchan. Others have pointed out that there has never - no, not once - been a dramatisation of Buchan's book, for each film rewrites central elements of the plot. The 39 steps in truth identify a coastal house in Kent where German agents are staying, and bear no resemblance to any of the (many) other explanations we have been given over the years. There is no final shootout. There is no heroine - or even a significant female figure - not one. The secrets being sought are our naval dispositions before World War One.
All this is ignored in this drama (as in every previous one) in favour of contemporary attitudes and modern morals. But if the characters had all shared our mores, what could possibly have given rise to the McGuffin (to quote Hitchcock) in the first place? It's all very sad.
Try to forget its connexion with Buchan's story and just watch it as entertainment.