Tuesday, January 24, 2012

High Noon At 60

In a new essay at Criminal Element, I take stock of Fred Zinnemann's HIGH NOON. At 60 years old, it's an acknowledged classic, but its reputation has always been marked by controversy.

For a director who was wildly successful, Zinnemann doesn't much love from film historians. Take a look at HIGH NOON again, though, and you'll see a nuanced piece of work. Then look at his other films, like the noir masterpiece ACT OF VIOLENCE, and you'll find a gifted artist who deserves a lot more credit than he gets.

Click here to read my essay on HIGH NOON.


Ed Howard said...

A very nice piece. This film does get underrated sometimes, which is a strange thing to say about such a classic, but nevertheless true. The Hawks criticism certainly seems to have hurt it, but it's pointless to pit these 2 very different films against each other - Rio Bravo is one of my favorite movies but High Noon is also quite good. I love its formalist rigor.

Jake Hinkson said...

Thanks, Ed. I totally agree. I hate when High Noon and Rio Bravo are pitted against each other. They're such different films with such divergent intentions. The only thing they have in common is that they're both really good westerns.