An archetypal western in many ways, but also a unique one. You’ve got all the tropes: good sheriff must defend the town, shootouts, etc., but there’s also an interesting flip in that the sheriff has to fight as much with his pride as he does with the forces of evil in the west.
The truth is - I never care whether this movie is an allegory of 1950's blacklisting (or red scare). HIGH NOON is indeed a masterpiece western from director Fred Zinnemann. Gary Cooper played Kane perfectly. Kane maybe a representation of us who always help people, when we need them most they didn't care about us. Not to mention the timeless beauty of Grace Kelly as Kane's wife. Shame, I just saw it a few days ago...
It's a perfect film. The pacing is perfection. What I like most about it is how it caused such an uproar when it came out. "Americans would never be cowards!" And of course being made in the 1950's it's an allegory on blacklisting, and the writer was blacklisted shortly after it came out.
A common trope amongst many films of the 1950s is an approaching train, shrouded in thick black smoke. Evoking a feeling of nausea, it has never been demonstrated with such veracity than in High Noon. The idea of the train as past is heartbreaking as the world crumbles beneath Will Kane's feet.
I debated myself as to whether this was an average film due to feeling like I needed to know more about the back story of the villains and their relationship with the hero. Or, was it an above average film due to the suspense it creates and the fine character studies it presents as to what makes a hero vs what is the voice of reason vs what is flat out cowardice. The latter point prevailed. 4 Stars.
"Don't shove me Harv. I'm tired of being shoved." - Marshall Will Kane Gary Cooper as the law abiding, dutiful marshall who is abandoned by the very same town he is sworn to protect. Watch it for the cooper's potrayal of will kane's frustation/anger, his conflict of conscience and also for the interesting title song played during the course of the movie composed by Dimitri Tiomkin and sung by Tex Ritter
Very well made portrayal of the loneliness of taking a stand. It's easy to see how historically the film has been championed from both the political left and right as Cooper portrays such an attractive existential hero: a man desperately striving to find moral courage while constantly finding himself on the cusp of collapse.
An amazing western! I really loved the real time aspect here, a pacing intertwined with the great soundtrack by Dimitri Tiomkin. Talking about that, what a great song led by Tex Ritter's powerful voice! The cinematography is great, the acting, well, all together makes just a damn good movie. Lot of people talk about the final clash, but I guess the climax remains on one of the last shots and it's a fair ending.
Don't call your wagon or marry the Quaker girl yet folks, this is less schlock and more slowburn as far as Westerns go. Despite the title and 'classic' status suggesting midday clock-strike showdowns and honky-tonk saloon brawls, this is one man facing the ghost-town of his past set at an oddly dawdled pace, considering the constant threat of the noon train. Whilst the climax picks up, it's over before it can peak.