The Man Who Knew Too Much (1956) ★★★★☆

“A single crash of Cymbals and how it rocked the lives of an American family.”

Revamping his 1934 thriller into an exotic, suspenseful adventure, Hitchcock makes excellent use of location, stunning chemistry between Doris Day and James Stewart, and the sharp story of what appears to be an average man, drawn into an assassination plot. “The Man Who Knew Too Much” retells the story of Dr.McKenna ( James Stewart), his wife Jo (Doris Day) along with their son, Hank (Christopher Olsen). They are on holiday in Marrakesh when they encounter a mysterious businessman who goes by the name, Louis Bernard (Daniel Gelin). For a man that asks many questions, he answers very few, becoming all the more suspicious.

With a run-time of precisely 2 hours, “The Man Who Knew Too Much” successfully sustains the tension without feeling like a chore to watch in the slightest. Bursting with vivid colours and Moroccan scenery, the cinematography is nothing short of excellent for its time. Day and Stewart make a dynamic duo, playing off each exceptionally. A feast for the eyes, as much it is the ears, Doris Day singing adds charm and delight to what can be a fairly dark picture. The score and music featured in this film is certainly some of Bernard Herman’s finest. Perhaps not on a par with Rear Window and Vertigo, but a heart-pounding race to the final moments of this thriller nonetheless.

Aside from a rushed ending, “The Man Who Knew Too Much” is simply a treat! Far more memorable than its predecessor. One to truly appreciate for the purpose and precision of every shot. What’s not to love?

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8 thoughts on “The Man Who Knew Too Much (1956) ★★★★☆

  1. I’m planning on finally getting down and watching Hitchcock’s films soon! I’ve only seen North By Northwest and I loved it so I’m excited to catch up on the rest. Got a few more to buy though, including this one… Great review!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, I have in fact. I saw it before watching the 1956 version. I recommend watching it as there is a lot to compare! But I definitely recommend this version, as the characters felt rather uninteresting in the previous instalment. Let me know your thoughts though!

      Liked by 1 person

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