North by Northwest

North by Northwest is a 1959 American spy thriller film produced and directed by Alfred Hitchcock and starring Cary Grant, Eva Marie Saint, and James Mason. The screenplay was by Ernest Lehman, who wanted to write "the Hitchcock picture to end all Hitchcock pictures".


In 1958 New York City, a waiter pages "George Kaplan" at the Plaza Hotel's Oak Room restaurant after a pair of thugs presumably requests him to do so. As advertising executive Roger Thornhill summons the same waiter, he is mistaken for Kaplan, kidnapped by the thugs and brought to the estate of Lester Townsend in Glen Cove. He is interrogated by spy Phillip Vandamm, a Cold War enemy of the United States, who poses as Townsend to Thornhill. Vandamm arranges Thornhill's death in a staged drunk-driving crash. Thornhill survives, but fails to convince his mother and the police about the happenings, even after revisiting Townsend's estate. During the visit, Thornhill learns Townsend is a United Nations diplomat.