To Catch a Thief – Close Up on Hitchcock – Secret Agent – tape 2378

The tape starts with a bit of banter from David Vine and John Virgo on the World Snooker Championships. Then a trail for The Works. There’s a trailer for BBC2’s award winning programes.

Then, we have Alfred Hitchcock’s To Catch a Thief. Cary Grant is a former jewel thief who’s under suspicion when a spate of thefts occur on the French riviera. Grace Kelly is the socialite who finds out his secret, is convinced he’s guilty of all the thefts, especially when her mother’s jewels are stolen in the night when Grant is staying with them, then has a change of heart when the real thief is killed while trying to kill Grant.

Or is he? Since the supposed thief has a wooden leg, he makes an unlikely cat burglar, so the real thief is still around.

Early in the film, there’s some classic Hitchcock rear projection, as Kelly takes Grant for a hair-raising ride around the coast – not the type of driving any princess should consider.

Rear Projection

This is quite a fluffy movie, by Hitchcock standards. It sometimes veers close to being a romantic comedy, especially when a scene of smooching is accompanied by fireworks.

BBC Genome: BBC Two England, 4 May 1997 22.30

Following the movie, there’s a trailer for an evening with Sean Connery. Then a trailer for repeats of Yes Prime Minister.

Then, a short programme, Close Up on Hitchcock, in which director Hal Hartley looks at Notorious.

BBC Genome: BBC Two England, 5 May 1997 0.15

After this there’s a trailer for the start of the second series of Murder One. And a trailer for This Life.

Then another Hitchcock movie, this one much older. Secret Agent was one of his British films, and stars, among others, John Gielgud and Peter Lorre.

Secret agent


BBC Genome: BBC Two England, 5 May 1997 0.25

After the movie, a trailer for From the Waterfront. Then a trailer for Another Silent Spring.

There’s late night weather from Suzanne Charlton, followed by trailers for East and for a programme that it’s hard to believe was even made in 1997. Menzone (‘a programme by blokes, for blokes. The fair sex won’t get a word in edgeways.’)

After some pages from Ceefax,

there’s programmes from The Learning Zone. There’s a couple of programmes on Teamworking and Leadership, which unaccountably starts with David Attenborough talking about meerkats. There’s also some football and yachting, but things perk up with a clip from Challenge Anneka, followed by a clip from Lenny Henry’s Chef!. Best of all is the Victoria Wood sketch of the Acorn Antiques production meeting. And let’s draw a swift veil over It’s a Knockout. Danny Baker even turns up in a programme about teamworking.

Danny Baker on Teamworking

There’s another Victoria Wood sketch where she and Celia Imrie go camping.

Victoria and Celia go camping

The tape ends just after this sketch.


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