Synopsis by Hal Erickson
The darker side of the American dream is explored in the fascinating film noir Pitfall. Dick Powell stars as John Forbes, a successful insurance man with a trophy wife named Sue (Jane Wyatt) and a model child named Tommy (Jimmy Hunt). Despite all that he's achieved in life, Forbes feels somehow unfulfilled. During an attempt to recollect illegally purchased goods by a convicted bank robber, Forbes falls for his glamorous client Mona Stevens (Lizabeth Scott). When she "comes on" to him, it sparks an affair between them. Forbes suffers the pangs of guilt, a fact immediately capitalized upon by the seedy private eye MacDonald (Raymond Burr), who is upset because Mona has rejected him. If adultery has been committed, can murder be far behind? Many individual scenes in Pitfall are standouts, notably a brief moment wherein Forbes' son Tommy suffers a horrible nightmare -- in almost exactly the same manner that child actor Jimmy Hunt would endure a similar bad dream in 1953's Invaders from Mars.
American-dream, boredom, employment, extramarital-affair, family, insurance-agent, killing, marriage, self-discovery