Ina Ray Hark: THE MAN WHO KNEW TOO MUCH: 1934 vs. 1956


Bob Lawrence:

lost or abdicated his authority

Ben McKenna:

takes authority back: escape

Jill: takes his place

motherhood best for woman

concert sequence:

Bob locked up whole time

concert sequence:

Ben joins Jo at Albert Hall

men: don’t have patriarchal authority:

ceded to women

restores authority to all males

Lawrences: on holiday

McKennas: traveling for Ben’s interests:

  • medical convention
  • WWII: N. Africa: Ben
    • Bernard: steps in when
    • Hank breaches patriarchal law

Jill: flirtation w/Bernard

Jo: suspicious of Bernard

Bernard: searches out Jill:

re: assassination attempt

Bernard: searches out Ben:

re: assassination attempt

Jill: knows re: assassination

Jo: has to beg Ben to tell her

chapel: Nurse Agnes preaching (woman)

chapel: Drayton preaching (man)

Lawrences’ child: daughter

McKennas’ child: son

2 female characters:

  • 1. female spy: cold:
    • maternal towards Abbott?
  • 2. Jill: performer:
    • shoots kidnapper
    • male skill

2 female characters:

  • 1. Mrs. Drayton:
    • maternal feelings save Hank
  • 2. Jo: performer: “Jo Conway”:
  • gave up career for husband’s
  • sings “Que Sera, Sera:
  • passivity of women: female skill

trouble caused by:

  • Bob’s lack of patriarchal assumptions

trouble caused by:

  • Ben’s patriarchal assumptions:
    • not letting Jo speak
    • discounting her intuition
    • sedating her
    • ending her career

hints that Jill resents Betty

Jo: asks Ben re: another baby

men & women:

  • line between them vague:
    • women have more authority

men & women:

  • don’t stray from assigned patriarchal roles:
    • Ben’s almost brutal drugging of Jo
    • yet: Ben’s lost when away from Indiana
    • Jo’s theatrical friends:
      • “Mr. Conway”
    • Ben awkward: Arab restaurant
      • blundering: taxidermist’s
      • can’t get into box @ Albert Hall           
  • Ben’s muddled everything:
    • Jo has right instincts:
      • re: Louis as spy &
      • Ambrose Chapel:
        • place, not person

Jill rescues Betty


Jill dispatches spy after Bob frees child

to come into her sights

Ben rescues Hank:

can only locate him thru 2 women:
Jo & Mrs. Drayton:

but only he can save Hank

film’s ending: intense & ambient emotions

film’s ending: a joke