The Money Trap
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|The Money Trap|
|Directed by||Burt Kennedy|
|Produced by||David Karr
Max E. Youngstein
|Written by||Lionel White (novel)
|Distributed by||Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM)|
The Money Trap is a 1965 drama film directed by Burt Kennedy, written by Walter Bernstein based on the novel of the same name by Lionel White, and starring Glenn Ford, Elke Sommer and Rita Hayworth. The supporting cast features Ricardo Montalban, Joseph Cotten and James Mitchum.
Joe Baron (Glenn Ford) is an under appreciated, under paid cop who has the ability to spend freely and live a luxurious life because of his very wealthy wife Lisa Baron (Elke Sommer) and the stock that her father left behind. Unfortunately for the happy couple, when their stock's dividends stop coming in, Joe finds himself in some serious debt trouble.
Simultaneously Joe and his partner Pete Delanos (Ricardo Montalban) receive a case where a very rich doctor Dr. Horace Van Tilden (Joseph Cotten) shot an intruder Phil Kenny in his home. As the duo visit the crime scene they find the intruder still breathing. On their way to the hospital Kenny reveals to Joe that he was after 2 bags of cash containing $500000 placed in the Doctor's safe. He also gives Joe a piece of paper that has the combination of the safe on it. Joe decides to keep this to himself and continues his own personal research on the case to find some more information.
During his intense search for more clues about the bags of cash and the intruder, Joe visits Phil Kenny's Wife, Rosalie Kenny (Rita Hayworth). When Joe meets Kenny's wife he realizes that she is none other than his childhood friend and lover. Later that night Joe leaves his house after having an argument with his wife and ends up meeting up with Rosalie. Joe's intentions are clear when he expresses his love for Rosalie and also asks for information about Kenny's robbery intentions. Continuing his conversation with Rosalie, he finds out that the Doctor has a business is selling drugs and that Kenny was an employee and an addict who was looking for a way to get some more drugs. When Joe realizes that the Doctor keeps his drug money in his safe at home, Joe finds a quick and easy way to get his hands on some money and some relief from his debt.
Through Joe's process of snooping around and planning to steal the Doctor's money, his partner Pete discovers his plan and wants a part in. They both work together and organize a plan to steal the bags of cash. The morning before the two cops plan to steal the money, they find Rosalie dead and out of the picture. Despite the tragedy, heartbroken Joe decides to follow through with the plan as the Doctor is out of town only for a few days.
As Pete and Joe are opening the safe and collecting the money bullets are shot at them and Pete is shot. Joe acts quickly grabbing the bags of cash and taking his injured partner to his home where they will take their next steps. As Pete lays on the bed he asks to see the money which is when they discover that one of the bags contains heroin. As Pete is still injured Joe decides to offer the Doctor the bag of drugs in exchange for his friend's life. During his treatment Pete doubts his friend's intentions and ends up dying. As Joe's part of the bargain, he must then deliver the drugs to the Doctor which then leads to a fight between Joe and the Doctor. During this fight Joe gets shot and the Doctor dies.
Injured Joe makes his way back home where he awaits his future in his wife's arms. 
The 1965 film The Money Trap portrays elements of the classic film making style known as noir. The black and white film uses the theme of a simple man (Joe Baron) drawn into crime and corruption for materialistic needs.
The Money Trap was one of the last noir films mad e after the style had first erupted in the 1940s. Not only does the main plot showcase a common noir film theme but the subplot that exists in the movie portrays a theme that proves The Money Trap to qualify as a noir film.
The subplot starts off with Joe Baron and his partner heading to the crime scene of a woman being hung by her husband for participating in sexual relationships for money (Prostitution). They later show that she has a daughter that her husband loved very much. On the day of their daughter’s birthday the girl’s father chooses to meet up and spend the day with her. At the end of the day Joe Baron arrests the man whilst the young girl is left to question about the actions that took place on her birthday. This small yet crucial storyline displays the theme of the happiness in a filmic perspective being never lasting.
Another example of the noir film technique being implemented is in the last seen where injured Joe Baron (Glenn Ford) turns all the lights on and looks over his large garden, swimming pool and beautiful house symbolizing all the materialistic needs that he chose to act unethically for.
- Glenn Ford as Joe Baron
- Elke Sommer as Lisa
- Rita Hayworth as Rosalie
- Ricardo Montalban as Pete Delanos
- Joseph Cotten as Dr. Van Tilden
- James Mitchum as Detective Wolski
- Tom Reese as Matthews
- Fred Essleras Mr.Klein
- Eugene Iglesias as Father
- Teri Lynn Sandoval as Daughter
- Argentina Brunetti as Aunt