Hitchcocks second American foray is a romping flag waver echoing themes presented in the 39steps and subesquently followed in Saboteur. The bones of the tale are wrapped in a story about an American reporter sent to cover political upheaval in Europe. He sets about shadowing the leader of a political peace movement and soon discovers it to be a hotbed of fifth columnists hell bent on extracting secret battle plans from the ailing leader. Hitchcocks maguffin is there in that the battle plans (a clause in a treaty) are alluded to but never revealed to the viewer. Trademark cinematography and technical quirks include a chase through a sea of umbarellas and sweeping shots which take the viewer from the skies and into an aeroplane window. This technical tradecraft freshens the familiar feeling created by the story; you know you're watching Hitchcock. Although similar in theme, the tale is less linear than either 39Steps or Saboteur and it feels a tiny bit convolouted because of it. There's more humour in this, there are comedic touches on the sidelines and almost whole characters are portrayed for comic effect. It's part adventure, part propaganda and the plane crash is well handled and exciting considering the era. This has many merits and I really enjoyed it.