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High Noon

4.5 out of 5 stars 115 customer reviews

Price: CDN$ 42.50
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Product Details

  • Actors: Gary Cooper, Grace Kelly, Thomas Mitchell, Lloyd Bridges, Katy Jurado
  • Directors: Fred Zinnemann
  • Writers: Carl Foreman, John W. Cunningham
  • Producers: Carl Foreman, Stanley Kramer
  • Format: Black & White, Closed-captioned, Collector's Edition, DVD-Video, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (US and Canada This DVD will probably NOT be viewable in other countries. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • MPAA Rating: NR
  • Studio: Universal Music Group
  • Release Date: Oct. 22 2002
  • Run Time: 85 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars 115 customer reviews
  • ASIN: B00006JMRE
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #64,617 in DVD (See Top 100 in DVD)
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Product Description

Written by Carl Foreman (who was later blacklisted during the anticommunist hearings of the '50s) and superbly directed by Fred Zinnemann, this 1952 classic stars Gary Cooper as just-married lawman Will Kane, who is about to retire as a small-town sheriff and begin a new life with his bride (Grace Kelly) when he learns that gunslinger Frank Miller (Ian MacDonald) is due to arrive at high noon to settle an old score. Kane seeks assistance from deputies and townsfolk, but soon realizes he'll have to stand alone in his showdown with Miller and his henchmen. Innovative for its time, the suspenseful story unfolds in approximate real time (from 10:40 a.m. to high noon in an 84-minute film), and many interpreted Foreman's drama as an allegorical reflection of apathy and passive acceptance of Senator Joseph McCarthy's anticommunist campaign. Political underpinnings aside, this remains a milestone of its genre (often referred to as the first "adult" Western), and Cooper is flawless in his Oscar-winning role. --Jeff Shannon --This text refers to the Blu-ray edition.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
"High Noon" is the classic western movie about a marshall facing down four badmen alone after the townsmen refuse to help him. Although it has a western setting, it could have easily been most any other locale because the psychological and social aspects are the important themes, not the old West, or riding horses. Made during the time of McCarthy and the Communist witch hunt, many have read political undertones into the movie.
A seemingly unusual cast includes Gary Cooper ("Sergeant York", "Pride of the Yankees") as the good-guy out-going marshall, Grace Kelly ("Rear Window") as his new wife, Lloyd Bridges ("Sea Hunt", "Airplane") as the deputy, Lee Van Cleef (the "bad" of "The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly") as one silent badguy, Lon Chaney ("The Wolfman"), and Henry Morgan ("MASH").
The movie proceeds in nearly real time - it starts about 10:30 AM and ends shortly after noon - and clocks are increasingly prominent in nearly every scene. The leader of the badmen, Frank Miller, who was sent to prison by the marshall under a death sentence but was released, is now coming to town on the noon train to kill marshall Kane. Three of his friends are waiting at the station to greet and assist him in killing the marshall. That same morning, Kane is getting married to a violence-abhoring Quaker woman and is going to give up being marshall because of it. After learning Frank Miller is coming to town, the wife convinces Cane to essentially skip town and they leave, but the marshall gets his sense of duty back and returns to town. He and his wife argue, and she is determined to leave on the noon train. The judge also packs his things and leaves town. The marshall's deputy also quits.
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Format: DVD
The film is hands down my favorite western and features many of the genre conventions, but also brings many progressive sensibilities to the genre. It is primarily a psychological western, not the shoot um ups that reigned in the past. What makes high noon such a masterpiece is the incredible perfection of its craft. It is truly one of the most tightly constructed films ever made. Not a single frame is wasted in the telling of its story and its conveying of mood. The film should be mandatory viewing for budding filmmakers, so they can learn the importance of lean, fat free editing. Kurosawa said he only shot footage so he could edit and high noon is truly a brilliant example of the power of concise editing. Many films today love to draw out their endings with multiple resolutions, high noon proves the power of speed and simplicity in its powerful closing scene.
The high noon dvd is presented in full frame format since the film was not shot in widescreen. Picture is amazing for a film that is over 50 years old. Contrast and sharpness are gorgeous and the print is one of the best of a film of this age. Sharpness is truly stunning. Shimmering and flicker is present on some objects and there are occasional tiny spots on the image. The spots were so small and infrequent i didn't even notice them ever until a second viewing. Shimmering on trees is present quite a bit especially if you have a cheaper dvd player. These are minor points, because i was stunned at the beauty of the tranfer.
Sound is presented in regular and enchanced audio. Regular sometimes has cooper's dialogue a little low. Enchanced has more kick, but they may have toyed with the original mix. A commentary is including with relatives of the cast and crew.
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Format: DVD
I saw this at age 8 when it was a brand-new, my-gosh piece of controversy. In fact, I saw it six times and the house was packed at each showing. Many powerful images have stayed in my head since then, and they are just as impressive today. Recall that the "controversy" behind this classic was its timing at the height of McCarthy's Red scare; the writers and directors, their creativity stymied by myopic thinking and fears of the day, pulled quite a stunt; the hero Will Kane marches to a different drummer in the face of a skittish and conformist environment. Politics aside, of course, this is just a rattling good movie. It started a new trend, which in those days was referred to as the "adult" Western, which in turn meant it dealt with ideas, principles, real-world emotions, not just horses and guns. Take it as an allegory of 50's culture or as a great Western, it works either way. Even its presentation style was a rule-breaker: starts with Tex Ritter droning "Do Not Forsake Me O My Darlin'" in the background, after which every Hollywood Western had to have a Western singer in the credits (unfortunately, it was usually a near-screaming, echo-chambered Frankie Lane with a blaring symphony orchestra backup! Good grief). The 1952 masterpiece was followed by countless imitations -- and how many Eastwood movies feature High Noon-style confrontations ? It's a landmark film so well done, it defies imitation. The DVD print is quite good, but the "digitized" sound is awful, as usual (turn it off, play it in the original mono). Catch the fight scene with Cooper and Bridges, and the scenes with skillful Katy Jurado and her competing suitors; it doesn't get any more real than this, and veteran director Zinnemann outdoes himself here. Every performance is tight and right-on.Read more ›
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