Man Who Knew Too Much, The (1934)

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The Man Who Knew Too Much was a 1934 thriller directed by Alfred Hitchcock, borrowing the title from G.K. Chesterton's 1922 stories. It revolves around the family of Bob Lawrence, vacationing in St. Moritz when Jill witnesses the murder of a French secret agent and, in turn, their daughter Betty is kidnapped by an international group of assassins. The action-packed climactic battle scene is based on the real life Siege of Sidney Street in 1911, in which "Peter the Painter" and his gang of Latvian thieves were cornered in a house by London police. The thieves' powerful semi-automatic weapons, including the Mauser C96 initially outgunned the police's Webley .450 revolvers until reinforcements were brought in, ranging from shotguns and rifles to a Maxim machine gun.

The following firearms were used in the 1934 film The Man Who Knew Too Much:

The Man Who Knew Too Much (1934)


double-barreled shotgun

While shooting clay pigeons at St. Moritz, both Jill Lawrence (Edna Best) and Ramon (Frank Vosper) use a hammerless double-barreled shotgun with a distinctive trigger guard.

Jill aims at her clay pigeon.
Ramon aims at a clay pigeon. Note the distinctive trigger guard.

FN Browning Model 1910

When Bob Lawrence (Leslie Banks) heads to Wapping in search of his daughter, he packs a FN Browning M1910 pistol in his right overcoat pocket. Once he is captured by the gang, Abbott (Peter Lorre) adds it to their arsenal. Rawlings (S.J. Warmington) uses it to hold on Bob.

The FN M1910 was, in fact, one of the weapons used by the Latvian thieves during the real life 1911 Siege of Sidney Street.

Bob draws his FN M1910 inside the dentist's office.
Abbott hands Bob's FN M1910 to Mrs. Brockett.
Rawlings holds Bob up with his own pistol.

Colt New Service

Mrs. Brockett (Clare Greet), the gang's apparent caretaker, holds a revolver resembling a Colt New Service on Bob inside the church.

Mrs. Brockett jams the revolver into Bob's side.

FN Browning Model 1900

The FN Browning M1900 is one of many weapons used by assassin Ramon (Frank Vosper) during the film. The M1900 appears to be his backup weapon, used when not carrying out an assassination.

Ramon draws his pistol on Bob.
Ramon's pistol falls to the ground during the church fight.
Another thug picks up Ramon's pistol.

Mauser C96

A Mauser C96 is the gang's preferred assassination weapon, handled by Ramon (Frank Vosper) when he attempts to murder a statesmen at the Royal Albert Hall. During the final gunfight, it is handled by both Agnes (Cicely Oates) and Abbott (Peter Lorre).

It was because of the Siege of Sidney Street in 1911 that the Mauser C96 received its alternate nickname, "Peter the Painter". It was used in the gunfight and had been previously found on the body of gang member George Gardstein. As it was believed to be carried by the gang's leader, known as "Peter the Painter", it gained a new nickname that soon found popularity with the IRA, who also used the pistol.

The C96's barrel.
Ramon aims his C96 during the performance.
Agnes with the C96 during the final siege.
Agnes holds the C96 on Ramon.
Abbott takes the C96 for the final gunfight.
Abbott's last stand, complete with his Mauser C96 and a final cigarette.

Lee-Enfield No. 1 Mk III*

London policemen (Frederick Piper and Frank Atkinson) take up Lee-Enfield No. 1 Mk III* short magazine bolt-action rifles as a response to the gang's semi-automatics.

Police take cover at a window with their rifles.
A policeman (Frank Atkinson) dies next to his rifle.
Jill with a policeman's rifle.
Policemen aim their rifles at a door.

Webley Mk VI

Another weapon used by the gang is the Webley Mk VI, passed from Rawlings (S.J. Warmington) to Abbott (Peter Lorre).

Rawlings fires his Webley during the siege.
Rawlings with his Webley during the siege.
Abbott fires a Webley during the siege.

Webley Mk IV Pocket Model

Abbott (Peter Lorre) uses a Webley Mk IV Pocket Model during the finale, passing it to Ramon (Frank Vosper).

Abbott loads his Webley Pocket Model during the siege.
Abbott hands his Webley Pocket Model to Ramon.

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