13 user 1 critic

Ordeal (1973)

Left to die in the desert by his wife and her lover, a businessman fights to survive and get his revenge.



(teleplay) (as Francis Cockrell), (teleplay) | 1 more credit »


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Complete credited cast:
... Richard Damian
... Kay Damian
... Andy Folsom
... Eliot Frost
... Sheriff Peter Geeson
... Fred
Bill Catching ... Joe Duncan
Len Felber ... Ralph


In the company of his wife Kay and Andy Folson, their guide, Richard Damian ventures on horseback into the desert with a view to locating a manganese mine he intends to buy. Unable to bear the rigors of travel, Richard has a violent altercation with Kay. Frightened, his horse rears up and makes him fall into a ravine. Richard, who realizes his leg is broken, asks for help but Kay and Andy decide to abandon him to his fate... Written by Guy Bellinger

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis







Release Date:

30 October 1973 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Die Feuerprobe  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Photophone Sound Recording)


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


This movie was the last appearance that James Stacy made before losing his left arm and left leg in a 1973 motorcycle accident involving a drunk driver. See more »


When Damian climbs back up the cliff to loosen the rope he had tied, he carries all his equipment with him. Why? He's only going to climb back down again. See more »


Remake of Inferno (1953) See more »

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User Reviews

Remember your boy scout training!...
1 December 2010 | by See all my reviews

...but alas Richard Damian never had any as he was born with a silver spoon in his mouth and once he pulled it out has been using that mouth to insult and push people around ever since. Damian is out on a desert expedition to investigate some land that may have some mineral value. He is accompanied by his wife Kay and the prospector, Andy Folsom. He has an accident and falls down an embankment, breaking his leg in the process. He barks out orders to the other two to get help. His wife asks Damian if he wants her to stay with him while the other goes for help. In an unfortunate choice of last words to her he asks why would he need the company of someone stupid.

Thus his wife leaves, and suddenly realizes the beauty of her situation. Richard, who has a reputation as being impulsive and taking off without telling anybody, is in a place that only she and Andy know about. She convinces Andy that the two should go back to town and tell the authorities that Richard is missing, but that he just disappeared into the desert. Plus, they point the authorities in the entirely wrong part of the desert as to where they were. A few days in the rugged elements with no food or water should do the trick. Murder without the mess of actually doing it. Kay will be rid of the bullying Richard and still have his money, Andy will have Kay.

Richard, not exactly being full of love and trust for his fellow man, quickly realizes what the two have done. In spite of the fact that every necessity has always been obtained with a credit card up to this point, he swears he'll walk out of this desert alive. Kay and Andy have a couple of problems on their hands too. For one, the sheriff of the desert town is a sharp cop, not a hick, and Andy and Kay fear he may be on to them. Secondly, when they take a private plane over the place in the desert where they left Richard three weeks before "just to make sure" they can find no body. Did Richard make it out powered on pure revenge? Did the sheriff find the body, hide it, and is just playing Kay and Andy to tip their hand? In their anxiety and growing panic are they simply looking in the wrong part of the desert? I'll let you have the fun of discovering what happens.

This film has little action and is mainly a character study mixed with a bit of mystery as you really get to know the three people involved. In the end, you can't help but have both a little bit of disgust and empathy towards all three. Highly recommended.

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