A vivid tale of priceless Zapotecan artifacts, deadly deception and sinister treasure-seekers unfolds in Plunder Of The Sun, based on the novel by best-selling author DAVID DODGE (To Catch A Thief). Brought to the screen by JOHN WAYNEs Batjac production company, GLENN FORD (Gilda, Blackboard Jungle) stars as American insurance adjuster Al Colby, a man who unwittingly becomes involved with a fortune in ancient curios after being asked to carry a mysterious package aboard a ship sailing from Havana to Mexico. Colbys seemingly innocent mission becomes a dangerous game of pursuit when he discovers that others-including two seductive women (DIANA LYNN, PATRICIA MEDINA) and a double-crossing rogue (SEAN McLORY) are determined to take possession of the parcel he carries
at any cost. JOHN FARROW (The Big Clock, Hondo) directs this mystery-thriller set amidst the spectacular archaeological ruins of Mitla and Monte Alban near Oaxaca, Mexico.
Plunder of the Sun
plays like a low-budget merging of two Bogart classics, The Treasure of the Sierra Madre
and The Maltese Falcon
. Wiseguy Al Colby (Glenn Ford) finds himself short of funds in Havana, but a mysterious antiquities trader (Francis L. Sullivan, doing his best Sydney Greenstreet) enlists Colby to transport a package from Cuba to Mexico. The package is a piece in a puzzle that could lead to millions in ancient gold, possibly buried in the elaborate ruins of Zapotecan temples--if Colby can survive the other adventurers jockeying to get the stuff. Director John Farrow keeps the story moving and the shadows at a satisfyingly noirish level even if the material never rises to anything like classic status, while Glenn Ford provides a fitting cruel streak for his nobody-makes-a-sucker-out-of-me hero. This was one of two movies Farrow made in Mexico that year for John Wayne's Batjac production company, the other being Hondo
. The balled-up plot, international gaggle of eccentric performers (most colorfully Wayne regular Sean McClory), and somewhat chintzy location shooting call to mind another globe-trotting movie of that era, Orson Welles' Mr. Arkadin
, and this movie even shares actress Particia Medina with that picture. --Robert Horton