High Noon (DVD)
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- Aspect Ratio : 1.66:1
- Language : Italian
- Product Dimensions : 526.5 x 54.6 x 741 cm; 34.93 Kilograms
- Director : Fred Zinnemann
- Media Format : DVD, PAL
- Run time : 1 hour and 21 minutes
- Release date : 30 July 2009
- Actors : Gary Cooper, Grace Kelly, Lloyd Bridges, Thomas Mitchell, Katy Jurado
- Dubbed: : English
- Subtitles: : English
- Studio : UniversalSony
- Producers : Stanley Kramer
- ASIN : B01FR37T9Y
- Country of origin : Australia
- Writers : Carl Foreman
- Number of discs : 1
- Customer Reviews:
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Fred Zinnemann directs this classic western starring Gary Cooper and Grace Kelly. A just-married and newly retired small town sheriff, Will Kane (Cooper), stays on the job one more day in order to face up to a vengeful outlaw due to arrive on the noon train. As the clock slowly ticks towards the appointed hour, Kane realises he must also contend with the objections of his pacifist Quaker bride (Kelly) and the indifference of the townsfolk, who are willing to sacrifice him to ensure their own safety. The film received seven Oscar nominations including Best Picture and Best Director and won four with Cooper picking up the Best Actor award.
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That aside the plot of the film is the heart of the film and resonates. Not the tough guy, not the fast gunman, not in the usual macho image of other cowboy heroes played by countless big stars of the the western genre, Cooper is about to be faced by four killers, gunmen with history, and he pleads for help from the townspeople as he knows he may not be up to the task --- how honest in a western, and Cooper's role would have been spat at by the likes of Wayne, Murphy, Scott et al. Throughout Cooper is uncertain, afraid, reluctant but refuses to run and will face his demons unaided. A real solid performance from Cooper who made the character very believable and probably left many Americans wondering and uncomfortable with a western that appeared to examine the psychology of the characters and wasn't the usual shoot 'em up style that was the staple diet of the genre.
Ideas from the film have been stolen by many, perhaps notably by Leone who made a film within a film using the sequence of the three gunmen waiting for the fourth at the railway station in 'Once Upon A Time In The West'. Perhaps Eastwood borrowed the idea of a town full of cowards and making the townsfolk paint their town red in 'High Plains Drifter'. Cooper settled for throwing his badge into the dust.
Directed by Fred Zinnemann who made many very good films not least of which was 'Day Of The Jackal', a particular favourite of mine. Music by Dimitri Tiomkin, another classic score by a man who knew how to make music tell a story.
My copy states it is digitally mastered, not perfect to my mind but it may depend on the source material as happens so often. English subtitles, a few extras that include a 24 minute documentary, film run time 85 minutes. It is yet another production that is still available in over a dozen variants of the disc format and continues to garner reviews, mostly positive.
This edition of High Noon may not be as exquisitely gorgeous as say the DVD Collectors Edition of Sunset Boulevard which was totally and utterly amazingly good for a film released way back in 1950 film, but for my eyes this particular edition of High Noon (2008 DVD Edition) is very, very good.
O' I have got a Bluray player but certain films you just can't get a reasonably priced - English speaking edition which may or may not guarantee you a immaculate picture as well as terrific sound production. So reluctantly I have to hope I get a reasonably happy print of the movie on DVD.
For instance my DVD copy of The Big Heat (1953) another Black & White movie is totally terrible with scratches, rips, tears you name it, it is BAD. But because at present you can't get a reasonably priced bluray edition of The Big Heat you just have to put up with a unsatisfactory copy of a movie that you love.
Anyway, back to High Noon. In a nutshell my opinion on the 2008 Cinema Universal Classic Edition of High Noon is it's well worth purchasing if a quality print is what you'll after.
I hope this review of the DVD has helped.
There is very little action until the last ten minutes or so. Until then we have Cooper attempting to persuade various townspeople to join him to fight against the newly released Frank Miller and his gang. Various rationalizations follow justifying the inaction of the 'law abiding' citizens. Nevertheless the build up of tension is relentless and in the end Kane's Quaker wife helps him to kill the Miller gang abandoning her own pacifist principles and possibly her religion in the process.
Directed by Fred Zimmerman this is an 'existential' western that also has a touch of Greek tragedy despite the ostensibly happy ending. In every way a wonderful film.
'Marshall Will Kane' (Gary Cooper) had cleaned up 'Hadleyville' (a small town in New Mexico territory) down the years making it
a safe place to live, he is now set to retire and start a new life in another town with his new-bride 'Amy' (Grace Kelly) as the
ceremony and celebration conclude three riders come into town 'Ben Miller' (Sheb Wooley) , 'Jack Colby' (Lee Van Cleef) and
'Jim Pierce' (Robert J Wilke) they are there to meet the noon train on which is 'Frank Miller' (Ian MacDonald)
'Will' had arrested 'Frank' some five years or so back, the vicious killer had been sentenced for a life-term in jail but had been
released early and is returning to 'Hadleyville' with revenge in mind.
When this news reaches the wedding party, 'Will' and 'Amy's' friends urge them to leave town immediately to start their new-life
together before the train arrives in little over an hours time.
The three that wait for 'Frank Miller' are members of his old gang.
'Will' and 'Amy' set off, however a short way into the journey 'Will' pulls up the carriage, he just can't leave the town open to the
will of 'Frank Miller' and his side-kicks, the new Marshall doesn't arrive until tomorrow.
Back in town 'Will' is confident that he'll be able to raise a posse, he has many friends in town many of whom had stood with him
during troubled times in years gone by.
However, even his deputy 'Harvey Pell' (Lloyd Bridges) throws in his badge upset that he'd not been appointed 'Will's' replacement,
and his so-called friends refuse to join in the fight.
'Will's' new bride not wanting to see her husband killed decides she'll leave town on the noon train 'Frank' is arriving on, the judge
that convicted the killer is also set to leave town.
'Will' must question why he has returned, is it to protect those that refuse to help, is it because if the fight isn't finished now, 'Frank'
will only hunt him down, or is it pride ?
Because the three gunmen are at the station waiting, 'Amy' goes back into town to await the train joining 'Frank's' former lover
'Helen Ramirez' ( Katy Jurado) who also intends leaving on the train..
'Will' waits alone for the noon train and the inevitable show-down.
This a tension-filled affair as the hour leading up to noon ticks slowly by
A rousing conclusion to the film as 'Will' faces the four gunmen.
Many of the stars included in the film are seen in many of the memorable westerns that follow this classic.
Filmed and presented in Black and White with a 4.3 picture ratio.