On the day he gets married and hangs up his badge, lawman Will Kane is told that a man he sent to prison years before, Frank Miller, is returning on the noon train to exact his revenge. Having initially decided to leave with his new spouse, Will decides he must go back and face Miller. However, when he seeks the help of the townspeople he has protected for so long, they turn their backs on him. It seems Kane may have to face Miller alone, as well as the rest of Miller's gang, who are waiting for him at the station... Written by
Until his death, director Fred Zinnemann fought not to have this film colorized, saying that he designed it in black and white and that it should be shown that way. He was unsuccessful, however. A colorized version was released by Republic Pictures Home Video, which acquired the film years prior, and was broadcast several times over the several cable outlets of Ted Turner, who was a strong advocate of the process. See more »
When Kane scribbles the note saying "Back in 5 minutes", the frontal camera shows the sentence beginning with "Back" being written at the top left of the page. However, the view changes to a camera behind Kane and he is still writing, but this time we can see the "Back" has begun halfway down and nearer the center of the page. See more »
You're Mrs. Kane, ain't you?
You're leaving on the noon train?
But your husband ain't?
No reason, but it's mighty interesting. Now, me, I wouldn't leave this town at noon for all the tea in China. No, sir, it's going to be quite a sight to see!
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Gary Cooper's greatest role, at 50, as the newly-married sheriff, Will Kane, left to fend for himself against his returning enemies, abandoned by the town he remains loyal to, and played out in real time through its 90 minute running time.
Ably supported by Grace Kelly as his pacifist Quaker wife, who discovers love and right triumphs over long-held preconceptions; Katy Jurado as Kane's former mistress, a fiery Latino type; and Lloyd Bridges as the feisty deputy; Cooper runs away with the acting honours. The theme tune by Tex Ritter is also worthy of note.
High Noon' works because of its tightly written script, its cracking pace and crackling tension. I've seen the film many times and always see something different to notice and admire; still, I'd love to see it again for the first time and not know the twists and turns, not know how it ends. A fabulous film one of the best.
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