Beware if a man in a film noir complains about his humdrum life, as Dick Powell does in Pitfall (1948).  He’s destined to have his life stimulated by violence and, possibly, the kiss of a woman who’s not his wife.  The said woman is played by Lizabeth Scott, whose boyfriend is in the clink.  A nerdy aggressor (Raymond Burr) wishes to take advantage of this imprisonment by running away with lovely Scott, but Powell, the would-be adulterer, remains in the way. . . Whatever Jay Dratler’s novel is like, presumably it was good material for a movie, for a very involving story—solidly directed by Andre de Toth—gets underway.  The casting alone is very involving.


Pitfall (1948 film)

Pitfall (1948 film) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Powell and Scott aren’t perfect—indeed, they’re superficial (for more nuance, there’s Jane Wyatt)—but they still fit noir material like a glove.  I only wish Pitfall was on DVD: I had to watch it on YouTube.