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zz001m| Sabotage
Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Screenplay: Charles Bennett, E.V.H. Emmett, Helen Simpson, Ian Hay, Joseph Conrad
Producer: Ivor Montagu, Michael Balcon
Cast: Sylvia Sidney, Oskar Homolka, Desmond Tester, John Loder, Joyce Barbour
Genre: Thriller

Running Time: 76
Aspect Ratio:  1.33:1 (NTSC )
Features: Black and White
Studio:  MGM (Video & DVD) DVD Region:  1 NR
DVD Release:  Feb 2009 Discs:  1 (DVD) []
Reviews:  Alfred Hitchcock's 1936 drama, among his darkest, is the one to which he regretfully pointed later as the exception that proved his usual rule about good suspense: you have to let an audience know the precise danger that a character doesn't know he imminently faces. Then you have to withdraw or cancel out the danger lest viewers feel betrayed. The "betrayal" in "Sabotage" rather famously involves a bomb, a boy, and a bus. But in the context of the story (based on Joseph Conrad's "The Secret Agent", inevitably confused with Hitchcock's quite different film called "Secret Agent"), the twist has a devastating significance, ushering in the director's pet themes about the proximity of chaos to ordinary life and the nature and transference of guilt. Sylvia Sidney stars as the naive American wife of a German spy, the latter using a movie theater as a cover for his terrorist activities. When he asks his wife's young brother to make a delivery--a package containing a ticking bomb, unknown to the child--a bus delay causes the boy to die in the timed explosion. Sidney's character murders her spouse in revenge, but as in Hitch's great "Blackmail", the deed is obscured by a sympathetic lawman who ultimately shares her secret. Wrong or right, right or wrong--the clear distinctions don't often exist in the great director's movies, and "Sabotage" is no exception. The print of the film used in the DVD release is serviceable and probably comparable to an average 16mm classroom or museum presentation. The DVD also includes a Hitchcock filmography, trivia questions, a director biography, and scene access. "--Tom Keogh"

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