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Foreign Correspondent1940

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  • 4.0
An American journalist sent to cover the volatile scene in Europe has barely arrived in Holland before he witnesses the assassination of a Dutch diplomat. Making the acquaintance of a peace activist and his daughter, not to mention a British Secret Service agent, the journalist is tipped onto the existence of a subversive organization; and, returning to England, comes under fire by a hired killer.

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2 members like this review

One of my all time favorite Alfred Hitchcock films. The film is about a correspondent sent to Europe to investigate the volatile turbulence which had begun to shake the world. What unfolds is a web of mystery, intrigue and nail biting thrills. The famous "windmill scene" is one of my all time favorite cinematic moments, chilling. A must for anyone who loves mystery, espionage and drama.

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top reviewer

Member Reviews (8)

207848.small
top reviewer

One of my all time favorite Alfred Hitchcock films. The film is about a correspondent sent to Europe to investigate the volatile turbulence which had begun to shake the world. What unfolds is a web of mystery, intrigue and nail biting thrills. The famous "windmill scene" is one of my all time favorite cinematic moments, chilling. A must for anyone who loves mystery, espionage and drama.

2 members like this review
180311.small
top reviewer

This is one Hitchcock's best suspense films, filmed with international espionage, and a great cast. Laraine Day, Joel McCrea and Herbert Marshall are superb, and it's always fun to spot Alfred himself somewhere in the film ...

1 member likes this review

Every creak in the rotation of the windmill, every glisten in the characters' eyes, every misleading jump cut is purposefully-constructed to make the viewers hold their breath and keep them on their toes with every turn of event. Its no surprise why Hitchcock is one of the most well-known suspense builder and entertainer in film history.

1 member likes this review
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top reviewer

For the record, the obligatory Alfred Hitchock cameo comes at the 12:27 mark. Everything before and after is high-octane visual story-telling, circa 1940. For his second American feature, Hitchcock teamed with production/FX master William Cameron Menzies to create a thriller that pushes the envelope; the sunny Hollywood back lot metamorphs into cold and ominous pre-War Europe. It's a template for suspense films for the next forty years. You can see traces of "Foreign Correspondent" everywhere. From "The Third Man," to "From Russia With Love," and "Raiders of the Lost Ark," and countless others.

What starts as a shadowy tale of intrigue and spies ends as a battle cry. Gone are the villains from the vague and nameless "foreign powers" of "The Lady Vanishes." The enemy now has a name and purpose, and Joel McCrea's speech at the end is aimed at Isolationist America: we've got to keep the lights on. "Foreign Correspondent" still dazzles, 75 years later.

Hitchcock is brilliant! So far ahead of his time. The ocean scene was done as well as anything I've seen into the '70s and perhaps '80s.

wonderful hitchcock.........

wow! hitchcock was the master, even laid the blueprint for the disaster film. excellent cast, great script

Confession: aside from being nice to look at, I think Joel McCrea sucks. Otherwise, this is almost always entertaining - sort of a lesser 39 Steps, perhaps - intermittently brilliant (some great setpieces, especially the plane crash; a couple of brilliant supporting performances), but often bewildering (the climactic death barely registers, the central conflict is too complicated to be a MacGuffin but too vague to be intriguing, and let's not even talk about that final scene).