This is a Columbia Pictures low renter with Robert Vaughn in the lead role. Vaughn is suffering from the mad at the world complex. He recently quit college and now finds out he has been drafted. He has no intention in going.
He needs money so he can head south to a sunnier climate. He meets a couple of buddies, Roger Smith and Tom Pittman at the local burger place. Smith and Pittman have troubles of their own. Smith has it bad for the daughter of his boss. The daughter, Merry Anders, is not interested in a guy who fills grocery bags for a living. Pittman has just got married to Kathy Nolan and needs to impress his new father in-law. He has been lying about selling a novel for a big wad of cash.
Complicating Vaughn's life, is his over protective mother, Sarah Selby, and the sexy college teacher, Dorothy Green, whom he is seeing. Vaughn tells Smith and Pittman he has a plan to net them 35-40 grand. They will hit the big supermarket where Smith works. They will rob the place on a Friday night and help themselves to the week's cash take. The other two want no part of the set-up. Things quickly change however for Smith and Pittman. Smith causes an accident that puts Anders in the hospital and Pittman's wife leaves him after discovering he is really broke.
The three decide to pull the job and acquire a pistol for, "just in case".. They call the police and send them on a wild goose chase with a false hold-up report. The three mask up and hit the supermarket with weapon drawn. They grab the cash and head for the exit. However, one of the clerks grabs Smith's mask and is shot dead by Vaughn. The three pile into the car and head to Dorothy Green's place to hide out. Green wants no part with the mess and sneaks off to call John Law.
The boys now have a falling out over the killing. Smith is left in a heap by a right cross by Vaughn and left for the Police. Vaughn and Pittman manage to escape as the police sirens close in. The two stop for food and cigarettes and a passing Patrol car puts the grab on Pittman. Vaughn is now on foot with the cash stuffed in his jacket. He hits a handy dance joint to hide for a while. The cops are soon looking the place over. Vaughn grabs a girl and hits the dance floor in-order to blend in.
Vaughn's night continues its downward spiral when his jacket pops a button. All the cash hits the floor and the crowd goes for it. Vaughn again beats the feet and escapes the police. On the edge of town he hitches a ride from a truck driver. Vaughn curls up and is soon asleep. The driver notices Vaughn's pistol stuck in his belt and pulls over at the first Highway Patrol station. While the driver is in grabbing the boys in blue, Vaughn awakens.
He quickly slips behind the wheel and speeds off with the Police in hot pursuit. The chase does not go far as Vaughn fails to make a turn on a steep hill and hurtles through the guard-rail. The film is sort of a juvenile delinquent "crime does not pay" expose.
If it had been made 8-10 years earlier I think it would have made a real killer of a noir.
This was one of the few films vet television director David Lowell Rich made away from the small screen.
The screenplay and story were by John McPartland.
The D of P was Henry Freulich. His work included, THE DEVIL'S MASK, SHADOWED, BUNCO SQUAD, CHINATOWN AT MIDNIGHT, THE CROOKED WEB and OVER-EXPOSED.
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