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The White Trap (1959) More at IMDbPro »


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Peter Barnes (writer)
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Release Date:
August 1959 (UK) See more »
Serving a jail sentence for a crime he didn't commit, Paul Langley makes several attempts to escape from prison, in order to clear his name. He also has other problems, his wife is about to go into labor with their first baby. | Add synopsis »
User Reviews:
A very effective little thriller See more (2 total) »


  (in credits order)
Lee Patterson ... Paul Langley
Conrad Phillips ... Sgt. Morrison

Michael Goodliffe ... Inspector Walters
Jack Allen ... Dr. Hayden
Yvette Wyatt ... Ann Fisher
Gillian Vaughan ... Wendy
Felicity Young ... Joan Langley
Trevor Maskell ... Dr. Lucas
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Ian Colin ... (uncredited)
Charles Leno ... (uncredited)
Harold Siddons ... Harry (uncredited)
Helen Towers ... (uncredited)

Directed by
Sidney Hayers 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Peter Barnes  writer

Produced by
Leslie Parkyn .... producer
Julian Wintle .... producer
Original Music by
Franz Reizenstein 
Cinematography by
Eric Cross 
Film Editing by
Tristam Cones 
Art Direction by
Eric Saw 
Sound Department
Len Page .... sound
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Vi Murray .... wardrobe
Music Department
Muir Mathieson .... musical director
Douglas Gamley .... composer: source music (uncredited)

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
58 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

First screened to cinemas in England as a second feature, it was later in 1961 screened in America as an episode in the first series of "Kraft Mystery Theater" (1959).See more »
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4 out of 4 people found the following review useful.
A very effective little thriller, 4 September 2014
Author: Enoch Sneed from United Kingdom

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

'The White Trap' is a cheap, second-feature production that runs under an hour but it gets you in a real grip, you find yourself caring about the characters and their situation.

The situation is that a man awaiting trial for smuggling (he insists he is innocent) persistently tries to escape to be with his ill, pregnant wife. The first shot of the film grabs you as we see him swim across a lake, fully-clothed, in daylight. The man may, or may not, be innocent but his objective is so honourable you cannot help willing him on to achieve it. Of course, the police are on his trail - will he be able to give them the slip? Fortunately he has friends and meets people along the way willing to give him the benefit of the doubt and help him along. We learn he escaped from prison camps three times during the war. He is resourceful and a bit of a hero, whatever trouble he ended up in.

This could have been a clichéd tale with a happy ending, the man proved innocent and reunited with wife and new child. Thankfully, the film acknowledges real-life is not a movie and there are enough unresolved issues to make this quite thought-provoking. The wife dies (in a truly moving scene) and the man is recaptured after a fairly vicious fight (reflected in the reactions of a nurse who had helped him). Our protagonist *may* be innocent and a war hero but he is not reluctant to use violence. As he is led away and the words 'The End' appear you have to wonder what happens next: is he found innocent or guilty, will the baby ever know his father?

There are two really good performances here from Lee Patterson as the desperate Langley, and Michael Goodliffe as a thoughtful Inspector who knows people, has a grudging respect for Langley, and feels a sense of anticlimax when he gets his man.

One last point worth noting is the very evocative music score by Franz Reizenstein. As the opening scenes unfolded I could not help being reminded of some of the work of Ralph Vaughan Williams. Imagine my smug satisfaction when I found on IMDb he had been VW's pupil in the 1930's. Damn, I'm good!

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