Tuesday, August 18, 2009

'Trapped' is an okay flick with bad opening

Trapped (1949)
Starring: Lloyd Bridges, Barbara Payton, John Hoyt, and James Todd
Director: Richard Fleischer
Rating: Six of Ten Stars

Master-counterfeiter Tris Stewart (Bridges) is serving a long prison sentence when he is recruited by the Secret Service to help capture a new ring of forgers who are using the plates he once created to get rich on phony bills. Stewart, however, is no stoolie, and he gives the agents the slip with the intention of not only getting even with his former partners but also to escape the long arm or the law with his girl (Payton) and a quarter of a million in funny money that it will let him live like a king in Mexico. But the government sting is still in effect, and Stewart's escape is not as perfect as he thinks....

"Trapped" is a well-acted and beautifully filmed crime drama. Bridges is the perfect film noir tough guy, Payton is the classic bad girl in love with a worse man, and Hoyt (as a government agent undercover as a con man with the means to help Stewart with his plans) is great as the shady character with something to hide. The unfortunate thing about the film is that its opening minutes are painfully reminiscent of a bad educational film/documentary about the Department of the Treasury.

"Trapped" is worth seeing if you're a big fan of 1940s crime dramas, but just be aware that you're going to have to sit through some really hokey stuff at the very beginning. (It does get better, though.)