7.7/10
12,989
114 user 91 critic

Johnny Guitar (1954)

Not Rated | | Drama, Western | 23 August 1954 (USA)
After helping a wounded gang member, a strong-willed female saloon owner is wrongly suspected of murder and bank robbery by a lynch mob.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (based on novel by)

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Johnny Guitar (TV Movie 1959)
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Pilot for a proposed western series about a footloose, guitar-strumming cowboy who helps folks with their problems. In the pilot episode, Johnny is hired to provide music for a wedding and ... See full summary »

Director: Robert M. Leeds
Stars: William Joyce, Fay Spain, Regis Parton
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
... Vienna
... Johnny 'Guitar' Logan
... Emma Small
... Dancin' Kid
... John McIvers
... Turkey Ralston
... Bart Lonergan
... Old Tom
... Corey
... Marshal Williams
... Eddie
... Mr. Andrews
... Pete
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Storyline

Vienna has built a saloon outside of town, and she hopes to build her own town once the railroad is put through, but the townsfolk want her gone. When four men hold up a stagecoach and kill a man the town officials, led by Emma Small, come to the saloon to grab four of Vienna's friends, the Dancin' Kid and his men. Vienna stands strong against them, and is aided by the presence of an old acquaintance of hers, Johnny Guitar, who is not what he seems. Written by Ed Sutton <esutton@mindspring.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Caught in the crossfire of danger and desire. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Western

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

23 August 1954 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Johnny Guitar - Gejagt, gehaßt, gefürchtet  »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$2,500,000, 31 December 1954
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (cut)

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Color:

(Trucolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Bosley Crowther in the review in The New York Times wrote that Joan Crawford "plays essentially the same role played by Van Heflin in Shane (1953)". See more »

Goofs

When Johnny has the shootout with Bart in front of the hill-top cabin, in the background we can see Vienna standing on the deck of the cabin, her body all the way to the timber railing. She is in sunlight. Then the view of her goes to a closeup, but now she is standing inside the door opening - in what is obviously a studio shot. This is probably connected to the fact that Joan Crawford insisted on her close-ups only being filmed in the studio, where the lighting could be rigidly controlled. No close-up of her was ever shot while on location. See more »

Quotes

Emma: You all think she's some fine lady and that doing nothing makes you fine gentlemen. Well she ain't! And you're not!
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Connections

Referenced in Wiedzmin 3: Dziki Gon (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

Old Joe Clark
(uncredited)
Traditional
Played on the guitar by Sterling Hayden (dubbed)
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User Reviews

The More Excess The Better
13 October 2013 | by See all my reviews

Hard to know what to say about this florid concoction except that it's truly one of a kind. Taken as a western, it's plain god-awful. Taken as parody of a western, it's sharp as a doorknob. Taken as an experiment in Technicolor, I can think of cheaper ways. To me, the movie is best taken as a collection of insider indulgence. How else to explain Crawford's Park Avenue get-up, or her desert island casino, or McCambridge's manly fierceness, or a bookish bank-robber, or a showdown for toughest woman of Lesbos.

Now, scholars can play around with symbolism all they want. But first, the subject has to be interesting enough to play with. Seems to me there are worthier movie subjects than this one for analysis. Sure, I've read how the story's really a color-coded allegory of McCarthyism, with the black-clad posse as HUAC and the bank robbers as commies. After all, the Dancin' Kid is left-handed and the gang does stick together and they do rob banks. Probably this is as good a subtext reading as any, that is, if you're looking for some such. Me, I just take it as a slice of Hollywood weirdness with Crawford playing dress-up and in charge, with the estimable Nick Ray trailing somewhere behind.


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