7.0/10
1,341
22 user 15 critic

The Sun Shines Bright (1953)

Approved | | Comedy, Drama, Western | 2 May 1953 (USA)
John Ford weaves three "Judge Priest" stories together to form a good- natured exploration of honour and small-town politics in the South around the turn of the century. Judge William ... See full summary »

Director:

John Ford

Writers:

Laurence Stallings (screenplay), Irvin S. Cobb (short stories "The Sun Shines Bright", "The Mob from Massac" and "The Lord Provides")
Reviews
Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »

Photos

Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Charles Winninger ... Judge William Pittman Priest
Arleen Whelan ... Lucy Lee Lake
John Russell ... Ashby Corwin
Stepin Fetchit ... Jeff Poindexter
Russell Simpson ... Dr. Lewt Lake
Ludwig Stössel ... Herman Felsburg (as Ludwig Stossel)
Francis Ford ... Feeney - Old Backwoodsman
Paul Hurst ... Army Sgt. Jimmy Bagby
Mitchell Lewis ... Sheriff Andy Redcliffe
Grant Withers ... Buck Ramsey
Milburn Stone ... Horace K. Maydew
Dorothy Jordan ... Lucy Lee's Mother
Elzie Emanuel ... U.S. Grant 'You Ess' Woodford
Henry O'Neill ... Joe D. Habersham
Slim Pickens ... Sterling - Lanky Backwoodsman
Edit

Storyline

John Ford weaves three "Judge Priest" stories together to form a good- natured exploration of honour and small-town politics in the South around the turn of the century. Judge William Priest is involved variously in revealing the real identity of Lucy Lake, reliving his Civil War memories, preventing the lynching of a youth and contesting the elections with Yankee Horace K. Maydew. Written by Bernard Keane <BKeane2@email.dot.gov.au>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

HER NAME WAS SHAME!..She got off the freight boat in the dead of night...walked down Main Street with those bold-brazen eyes...and the town was never the same again! (original print ad) See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Western

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The final production of John Ford's independent Argosy Films. The box office failure of The Sun Shines Bright (1953) contributed to Argosy's demise. See more »

Quotes

[the prayer he says at the funeral of Lucy Lee's mother]
Ashby Corwin: Gentle Jesus, meek and mild, / look upon a little child. / Pity her simplicity; / suffer her to come to thee. / Amen.
See more »

Alternate Versions

Three known versions exist: a 90, 92, and 100 minute version. When originally prepared the film ran 100 minutes, which the studio forced Ford to cut to 92 minutes. When the film did poorly it was cut by another two minutes. The 90 minute cut became the standard TV print. The 100 minute cut was accidentally discovered after preparing a video print. The print given to Republic Video was Ford's personal copy, which had never been publicly viewed. Thus the main print in circulation is the 100 minute "director's cut". See more »

Connections

Featured in John Ford (1993) See more »

Soundtracks

My Old Kentucky Home
(uncredited)
Music by Stephen Foster
Arranged by Jester Hairston
See more »

User Reviews

A beautiful about loyalty in a time that never was
3 August 2004 | by rappaportrappSee all my reviews

It is a lovely film to watch. Archie Stout one of fords favorite cameraman, shot it. The last scene where Judge Priest is seen in the doorway echos the last scene in the Searchers. It is a film about loyalty, honor and redemption. But there are scenes where the black people of the town are shown to be childlike, and in awe of their white leaders. This marks the film as a product of a time long past. Some of the scenes of the black people are demeaning. But over all, Judge Preists sense of honor, his fairness to all, his sense of decency looms over the film. Ford makes Judge Priest (played by Charles Winninger in his best role) a heroic figure. But a figure that is isolated even in a crowd. A former bugler he is left to carry on the codes of honor and fairness that the old south thought it contained. People vote for him, return him to office year after year, yet he goes into his home alone. He is man out of his time. A man of the community but set apart from it by his strict adherence to his code. Some of the acting in the film is over acting. But the last fifteen minutes are lovely to watch.


20 of 22 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 22 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | German

Release Date:

2 May 1953 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Sun Shines Bright See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Argosy Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (video) | (original theatrical)

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page



Recently Viewed