The Man in the Net

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The Man in the Net
Man in the net Poster.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Michael Curtiz
Produced by Walter Mirisch
Alan Ladd
Screenplay by Reginald Rose
Story by Hugh Wheeler
Starring Alan Ladd
Carolyn Jones
Music by Hans J. Salter
Cinematography John F. Seitz
Edited by Richard V. Heermance
Jaguar Productions
The Mirisch Corporation
Distributed by United Artists
Release dates
  • May 29, 1959 (1959-05-29) (Sweden)
  • June 10, 1959 (1959-06-10) (United States)
Running time 98 minutes
Country United States
Language English

The Man in the Net is a 1959 American film noir starring Alan Ladd and Carolyn Jones. The taut drama was directed by Michael Curtiz.[1]


Commercial artist John Hamilton (Alan Ladd) and wife Linda (Carolyn Jones) leave New York and move to Stoneville, Connecticut, in the New England countryside, to escape the bustle of the city and because of John's growing concern about Linda's alcoholism.

John quickly befriends the town's children, but he's treated like an outsider by many of the adults. Linda misses their social life in New York, as well as the salary John made there.

She insists they attend a party at the home of Brad (John Lupton) and Vickie Carey (Diane Brewster), where the guests include another married couple, Roz (Betty Lou Holland) and Gordon Moreland (Tom Helmore), the wealthy father of Brad Carey. A scene is created by an intoxicated Linda, who insults John and lies that he gave her a black eye, confessing to Vickie after the party that she actually fell while drunk. In anger, she tells John she's been having an extramarital affair with a local policeman, Steve Ritter (Charles McGraw).

John agrees to go to New York for a job interview arranged by his wife behind his back. When he returns, Linda is nowhere to be found. A suitcase belonging to her is spotted by a city dump. Unable to find John's wife, police and neighbors suspect him of murder. Villagers stone his house. Ritter arrives to arrest him. John flees and is given refuge by the children, who know of a secret cave.

Evidence is found linking Linda to another man. A tape recording is left as bait, and John, who suspects someone else, is surprised when Brad turns up looking for the tape. It reveals he's the one Linda had the affair with and the one who physically abused her, but John soon discovers that it was Mr. Carey who actually killed Linda to cover up for his cowardly son.



The film was mostly shot in Hollywood with some location shooting in Framingham, Massachusetts.[2] Also, the exterior of "The Chimney House", a location that figures prominently in the story is Roseland Cottage in Woodstock, Connecticut.


Critical response[edit]

When the film was released, Richard W. Neson, film critic for The New York Times, liked the film's Miss Canfield, from Leave It To Beaver, and Carolyn Jones's acting, writing, "More interesting is the dialogue by Mr. Rose and his preoccupation with injustice. The lines show a keen love for kids and an honest regard for the need to interject reality into a yarn that is tediously familiar once it settles down into its melodramatic formula. Miss Jones plays the wife with controlled fanaticism. Mr. Ladd, on the other hand, performs in his usual, cool style, which under the hectic circumstances mutes his personality to the point of unreality.[3]


  1. ^ The Man in the Net at the American Film Institute Catalog.
  2. ^ Alan Ladd on Location in Framingham By Edwin F. Melvin. The Christian Science Monitor (1908-Current file) [Boston, Mass] 03 July 1958: 7.
  3. ^ Neson, Richard W. The New York Times, film review, June 11, 1959. Last accessed: December 11, 2007.

External links[edit]