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Plot:

Lawyer Ralph Anderson arrives in Tula, an amazingly remote town in the desert, as a reluctant emissary of mob chief Victor Massonetti, who wants the airstrip clear for his unofficial exit from the country. Ralph’s arrival has a profound effect on his estranged father, the Sheriff; his brother Tip, an alcoholic Deputy; and his ex-sweetheart Linda, now married to Tip. Tension builds as a small army of gangsters takes over the town. Then the situation abruptly changes.

Also Known As: Tehlikeli Tuzak, The Trap, Erämaan ansa, Armadilha Sangrenta, Thanasimi enedra, Kenjû no wana, Fuga desesperada, L'agguato, Die Falle von Tula, Capcana, Sidste stop før grænsen, The Baited Trap, Döden gillrar fällan, Die Falle von Tula West, Dans la souricière, Serifov sin, La trampa

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  • crystal-hopkins
    crystal hopkins

    Prodigal son (Widmark) must get top gangster (Cobb) across desert to justice despite opposition from gang and family rivalries. Pretty good suspenser if you can get past that over-long, over-done early scene where Widmark and Louise make moon-calf eyes at each other. After that the narrative settles into a decent contest of wits. One thing for sure—they didn’t have to build many sets. There’s a huge swath of desolate California desert the cars get to roll across, while I’m thirsty just watching this.There’re maybe more family convolutions than the story needs. I expect much of that is to build up Tina Louise’s part. And what a dish she is, several years before Gilligan’s Island. I will say they wisely de-glamorized her for the rustic part here. It’s a good cast, though the 46-year old Widmark is a little long-in-the-tooth for his role; plus, the great Lee J. Cobb has less to do than I would expect.Nonetheless, the premise plays out nicely in the abandoned diner and in that final twist that I didn’t see coming. There’s nothing special here, just an entertaining 90-minutes with a good cast and a big part of California that sure ain’t Hollywood.

  • rein-suvi
    rein suvi

    I stumbled upon this movie at my local library, and I decided to take a chance on it with no previous knowledge about it. On the whole, I found the movie to be fairly satisfying. At just eighty four minutes in length, the whole package runs smoothly and with no dead spots, and there is some genuine excitement and tension here and there. The cast also does a pretty good job in their roles. Most interesting, even though the movie’s ending is to a degree predictable (this was made during the Production Code era, after all), I was surprised that to a larger degree the movie ended on quite a sad note; you could sense that the Widmark character had some deep guilt in his bringing trouble to his former home town.The movie is good, but could have been better. There are some unanswered questions and things that don’t make some sense. For example: Wouldn’t the Widmark character know what the area around the town he grew up in would be like? After killing the first deputy, why didn’t the bad guys then kill Widmark and the others when they stumbled upon the deputy’s body? And how did the bad guys know to grab and hold hostage the Tina Louise character? These and other nagging questions do hurt the movie to a degree. It’s probably best to hold off watching the movie until you are in a forgiving mood.

  • matthew-ibarra
    matthew ibarra

    Richard Widmark stars with Lee J. Cobb, Tina Louise, and Earl Holliman in 1959’s “The Trap,” produced by Widmark’s company.Widmark plays a mob attorney, Ralph Anderson who returns to his home town, despite being estranged from his sheriff father and deputy brother (Holliman). He needs his father to look the other way while a mobster, Vincent Massonetti (Cobb) takes a plane from there to Mexico. He explains that if his father doesn’t do it, lots of blood will be shed.Unfortunately, Massonetti is spotted and all hell breaks loose. Anderson decides to drive Massonetti to the authorities – and there’s one road out of the desert town. Accompanying him are his brother and his brother’s wife (Louise), a former girlfriend of Anderson. Lots of complications as they attempt to get past the people who want to free Massonetti.Tense thriller with good performances all around. Louise was probably 20 at the time and very beautiful. I had the extreme displeasure of interviewing her some years ago, so I hesitated to watch this. Small but effective film that has the feel of a western, though it isn’t one.

  • karen-dunn
    karen dunn

    If I could describe the trap as a regular 50s film I would say it is a very good film of its kind it may not have been the Rebel without a cause or The African Queen but my personal believe is that it sais something for B movies, my other thought is that you don’t have to have Burt Lancaster or Rock Hudson or even a big budget for it to be a great film. Take this for example this was Tina Louise’s second or third film but she did an outstanding job. Also the actors did outstanding job Richard Widmark, Earl Holliman, Lee J. Cobb, Carl Benton Ried and Lorne Greene did a super job. The camera was great, the producing and directing was great and the film itself was excellent I am looking forword to seeing it again.

  • christine-cox
    christine cox

    A twisted family plot about one son who leaves his small California desert town and becomes a lawyer for the mob, and the other, who remains and follows in his father’s footsteps to become a sheriff’s deputy in the same town, and who meet again when brother number one returns with a fleeing mob boss and his bodyguards, who are attempting to help him escape into Mexico via a desert airstrip. Between them (the two brothers) aside from being on opposite sides of the law, is a woman who is now married to the deputy but who was with the other brother before he left town. And the father, the town sheriff, is a by-the-book character who resents the one son for leaving and the other for his personal weaknesses, especially his drinking. Along comes the mob boss and his boys into the desert town, and all hell breaks loose, leading to the film’s finale, a scenic cat and mouse chase through the desert. Widmark’s character turns out to be not bad at all, as he’s shown to be really a good guy at heart, and contrasts with the corrupted mob figures whom he ultimately battles. Earl Holliman, as the other brother, plays the tragic part, a marriage (Tina Louise as his wife) that turns out to be a farce, and a job that’s his only due to the influence of his father (sheriff Carl Benton Reid), a man who has zero respect for him.

  • sabbas-koursares
    sabbas koursares

    The Trap grafts a dysfunctional-family drama onto a glorified road-chase movie; it also grafts the shoot-from-the-hip conventions and sun-parched look of the Western onto a late-fifties crime drama. These various components, all vying for our attention, give birth to a hybrid that lacks any individuality.Prodigal son Richard Widmark turns up in his hometown of Tula, out in the California desert, after a decade’s absence. The old homestead, seething with tensions, houses his father (Carl Benton Reid), the town sheriff; his drunken wastrel of a brother (Earl Holliman); and the brother’s wife (Tina Louise), an old flame of Widmark’s. It seems that Widmark works for the mob as a mouthpiece, come home to persuade his law-and-order dad to call off the police guarding an airfield where crime kingpin Lee J. Cobb will make a break for Mexico. In the ensuing chaos, after his dad gets killed, Widmark decides to bring Cobb to justice himself. Unfortunately, he needs the help of his resentful brother, who in turn needs the cash Cobb offers him….The trek through the desert to the nearest big town proves a fiendish obstacle course: What with snipers and double-dealings and radiators gone dry, it’s just one damn thing after another. The relentless heat and blazing sun suck out much of the movie’s juices, too; watching it becomes an endurance contest like being stranded in the desert. Widmark and Cobb walk through their roles with expected professionalism, but do nothing unexpected, either. Holliman telegraphs his vacillating weakness loud and clear, while Tina Louise doesn’t bring much to the party (but then again, director Norman Panama didn’t ask her to bring much). Once it’s over, The Trap just sort of dries up and blows away.

  • kaarina-vuorela
    kaarina vuorela

    ‘The Trap (1959)’ is a rather obscure crime thriller, but nevertheless has some star-power behind it. Richard Widmark is Ralph Anderson, a prodigal son returning to his hometown in the middle of the California desert. Lee J. Cobb is Victor Massonetti, a fugitive mob-boss intent on boarding a private plane to Mexico. When Ralph and his alcoholic brother Tippy (who is unhappily married to Ralph’s ex-flame, Linda) capture Massonetti, the gangster’s Mafia affiliates go into overdrive. With just a single dirt road leading out of town to civilisation, getting Massonetti into the hands of the authorities isn’t going to be pleasant or easy. Just like John Sturges’ wonderful ‘Bad Day at Black Rock (1955)’, this film has all the trademarks of a Western, but is set in modern times. As the escort winds its way across the lonely, parched landscape, you can cut the tension with a knife. Cobb is a formidable villain, his silent glowers and snide threats from the backseat proving both entertaining and unsettling. Tina Louise is certainly alluring as the love interest torn between two brothers, and Carl Benton Reid is impressive as Ralph and Tippy’s overbearing sheriff father. And just to prove that Bruce Willis has nothing on his forebears, Widmark takes out a plane with a car!

  • ruben-kjaer-jensen
    ruben kjaer jensen

    This is well acted and directed. The mood is set right from the beginning, and Tula is no town for the faint of heart. Widmark and Cobb are terrific, and the supporting cast matches them every step of the way. Toward the end, some plot holes become apparent under close examination, but the ride is worth taking.

  • merike-vares
    merike vares

    The Trap (AKA: The Baited Trap) is directed by Norman Panama who also co-writes the screenplay with Richard Alan Simmons. It stars Richard Widmark, Lee J. Cobb, Tina Louise, Earl Holliman and Lorne Greene. Music is by Irvin Talbot and cinematography by Daniel L. Fapp.Tula Torments.Tula, California and Ralph Anderson (Widmark) has returned home under a cloud. He’s been a lawyer for mob boss Victor Massonetti (Cobb) and needs to fulfil a favour to get Massonetti out of the country. Unfortunately the law in Tula comprises of his father and brother, the former still angry at Ralph for a youthful misdemeanour, the latter an alcoholic married to Ralph’s childhood sweetheart. It’s a recipe for disaster…A Technicolor action/thriller that has somehow found its way into some film noir reference books, The Trap should just be viewed as belonging to the former genre titles. Which is fine, especially since it’s grand entertainment. Essentially it’s a play on the good narrative device of a good man who has done something he’s not proud of, but is now desperately trying to make amends. Surrounding him is a fractured family dynamic, a romantic attachment that hurts his very being, and the small matter of some very bad dudes after the quarry in his charge – and thus also his blood!The story throws up a number of surprises to further beef up the psychological broth, emotions are pulled all over the place, while death is a constant threat to keep things on the high heat. There’s plenty of sweat and steam, boozing and brooding, neuroticism and nastiness, there’s nary a dull moment in the whole play. All of which leads to a genuinely surprising and moving finale. The cast all turn in effective character portrayals, feeding off of one and other to make the picture achieve all it can. The sound stage aspects of the shoot are irksome, with the main painted backdrop particularly looking fake, which is a shame as the genuine exterior photography by Fapp is gorgeous.Small irks aside, this is a meaty hybrid piece out of Paramount and highly recommended to fans of the stars and such genre fare. 8/10

  • gabriel-perkins
    gabriel perkins

    The Trap is an independent film produced by star Richard Widmark which sad to say doesn’t get broadcast often enough.Widmark plays a mob attorney who goes to his former hole in the wall one horse town where his stern father Carl Benton Reid and jealous younger brother Earl Holliman are sheriff and deputy. Widmark is hoping to get his family to help big time mobster Lee J. Cobb escape to Mexico.Dad doesn’t prove amenable to helping a son he despises for whom he works for. He even likes the weak and vacillating Earl Holliman more than Widmark.When the plan blows up and Widmark realizes it’s brought about the destruction of his family he resolves to bring Cobb in. But it proves to be a daunting task.Cobb essentially repeats the roles he had as mobsters in On the Waterfront and Party Girl. He doesn’t break any new ground, but he’s always fascinating to watch.Holliman has the best role in The Trap. He’s married to Tina Louise who Widmark abandoned when he left their town. Holliman always has known he was less than a second choice husband and his resentment crackles throughout his performance.I wish that The Trap was broadcast more often. Maybe it will be seen on a Richard Widmark retrospective if that man ever gets his long deserved lifetime achievement award.