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50 Worst Movie Betrayals

Stalag 17 (1953)

The Betrayal: Price (Peter Graves) is a German spy in a POW camp who’s attempting to siphon information from his fellow prisoners. Until Sefton (William Holden) turns him in, that is.

Why It’s So Bad: Not only does Sefton expose Price as a fraud, he also dooms him to death in the most horrific way.

The Fallout: Price is hurled out into the camp’s yard, where soldiers pump him full of bullets.

Road To Perdition (2002)

The Betrayal: Mob enforcer Michael Sullivan, Sr. (Tom Hanks) is betrayed by his boss, John Rooney (Paul Newman), who kills Sullivan’s family when Sullivan’s son witnesses a murder.

Why It’s So Bad: Rooney has no qualms about murdering innocent women and children, no matter if they’re the family of an employee.

Now that’s cold.

The Fallout: Sullivan goes rogue. Awesome.

Unfaithful (2002)

The Betrayal: Housewife Connie (Diane Lane) cheats on her husband with the dishy Paul Martel (Olivier Martinez).

Why It’s So Bad:
Sure, Connie learns a few new bedroom tricks, but it’s not long before husband Ed (Richard Gere) finds out and decides to kill the other man.

The Fallout: Jealous rage and a messy ending.

Casino (1995)

The Betrayal: Nicky Santoro (Joe Pesci) betrays buddy Sam Rothstein (Robert De Niro) by bedding his wife (Sharon Stone) and then plotting to murder him.

Why It’s So Bad: Stealing a man’s wife and plotting his murder?

What is this guy’s problem?

The Fallout: Nicky discovers what it’s like to be betrayed when his former associate Frankie Marino (Frank Vincent) is hired by Sam to kill him.

Infernal Affairs (2002)

The Betrayal: Both Chan Wing-yan (Tony Leung) and Lau Kin-ming (Andy Lau) betray different organisations – the first goes undercover as a crim, the latter goes undercover as a cop.

Why It’s So Bad: This can never work out, surely.

Have neither of them seen Reservoir Dogs ?

The Fallout: Lots of shooting and Lau being arrested.

Fatal Attraction (1987)

The Betrayal: Married New Yorker Dan Gallagher (Michael Douglas) has a weekend fling with sultry editor Alex Forrest (Glenn Close).

But Alex wants it to last more than a weekend.

Why It’s So Bad: It all goes a bit wrong as Alex’s obsessive desire runs rampant, resulting in that infamous bunny boiling scene.

The Fallout: A very bloody bath.

The Third Man (1949)

The Betrayal: The police think heartless crook Harry Lime (Orson Welles) is dead, right? Right.

Well, that’s until his supposed friend Holly Martins (Joseph Cotten) tells the police that he’s alive – and then informs them of his whereabouts.

Why It’s So Bad: If you can’t count on your best friend to cover for you, what can you count on?

The Fallout: Martins ends up shooting Lime himself – then attending his second, authentic funeral.

Amadeus (1984)

The Betrayal: Antonio Salieri (F. Murray Abraham) is so jealous of his gifted friend Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (Tom Hulce) that he plots to commission a composition from him, kill him and then pass it off as his own.

Why It’s So Bad: It’s just plain bad sportsmanship.

If you’re not a great composer, don’t be a composer. Not hard, is it?

The Fallout: The plan falls apart when Mozart is unable to finish his composition.

That’ll show you, Salieri.

The Treasure Of The Sierra Madre (1948)

The Betrayal: After successfully hunting for gold with his buddy Curtin (Tim Holt), Dobbs (Humphrey Bogart) turns on his friend and kills him.

Why It’s So Bad: The only thing driving Dobbs is paranoia and greed – he needn’t have killed Curtin at all.

The Fallout: Dobbs is killed himself by bandits.

That’ll show him.

Oldboy (2003)

The Betrayal: Oh Dae-su (Choi Min-sik) is kidnapped and locked up for 15 years by Lee Woo-jin (Yoo Ji-tae), who’s holding a very big grudge about a high school rumour perpetuated by Oh Dae-su years ago.

Why It’s So Bad: Lee’s plans involve a sickeningly perverted twist involving Oh Dae-su’s relationship with a young chef.

The Fallout: Pure tragedy in motion.