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Fred Zinnemann
Gary Cooper, Grace Kelly, Thomas Mitchell, Lloyd Bridges, Katy Jurado, Lon Chaney Jr.
Carl Foreman, John W. Cunningham

A town marshal must face a gang of deadly killers alone when the gang leader arrives on the noon train.
Not Rated.

Aspect Ratio: 1.37:1
English DTS-HD MA Monaural
Supplements Subtitles:

Runtime: 85 min.
Price: $29.95
Release Date: 9/20/2016

• “A Ticking Clock” Featurette
• “A Stanley Kramer Production” Featurette
• “Imitation of Life” Featurette
• “Oscars and Ulcers” Featurette
• “Uncitizened Kane” Essay
• Trailer
• Booklet


-LG OLED65C6P 65-Inch 4K Ultra HD Smart OLED TV
-Marantz SR7010 9.2 Channel Full 4K Ultra HD AV Surround Receiver
-Panasonic DMP-BD60K Blu-Ray Player
-Chane A2.4 Speakers
-SVS SB12-NSD 12" 400-watt Sealed Box Subwoofer


High Noon: Olive Signature [Blu-Ray] (1952)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (January 23, 2018)

1952’s High Noon presents a deceptively simple story. After having cleaned up a formerly wild town, Sheriff Will Kane (Gary Cooper) marries lovely young Amy (Grace Kelly) and steps down from his post.

However, just before they split for good, word comes down that the gang of Frank Miller (Ian McDonald) recently came to town,and their recently freed chief will soon arrive. Kane knows they have one objective: to settle the score with him.

Kane could run and sacrifice all of the improvements he made, or he could stay and possibly face his own demise. Told virtually in real-time, High Noon focuses on the tensions that grow with each passing minute, especially as Kane attempts to round up a posse to confront and try to defeat the Miller gang.

In case you haven't seen the film, I won't discuss Kane's success in this regard, but I will indicate that the story seemed quite unusual for the era. In fact, I've read reports that John Wayne called it "un-American".

On the contrary, I think High Noon endorses virtually everything that we'd like to believe is true about the US: a sense of community and a desire by all to stand up for what's right despite the possible personal cost.

Because High Noon didn't reveal the American spirit as the Duke wanted to define it, he may truly have felt that it was subversive. I see it completely differently, though, as this is the sort of film that really should inspire apathetic sorts to become more active in their own environments.

Speaking of which, the backdrop against which High Noon was made must be acknowledged. It came at the height of the Fifties Communist scare, and writer Carl Foreman was blacklisted for a few years due to his apparent sympathies.

High Noon stands as a product of that period and becomes even more compelling when considered against that scenario. This was an era in which few were willing to stand up for what they believed in due to the enormous pressure to follow the "common thought" of the period, and the comparison between the movie and the reality evokes strong similarities.

Even without any consideration of historical parallels, High Noon works as a strong and taut piece of drama. Director Fred Zinnemann paces the movie in a terrific manner and evokes every last bit of tension out of the activities.

While the film doesn't offer too many well-drawn characters, it at least benefits from a solid cast, with folks like Thomas Mitchell, Lloyd Bridges, and Lon Chaney in tow. From Cooper on down, all offer strong performances.

Put simply, High Noon remains one of the rare films that evokes its era but doesn't feel like a prisoner of its age. It provides a deep and satisfying morality play that has barely aged over the last 65-plus years. The movie strongly deserves its status as a classic.

The Blu-ray Grades: Picture A-/ Audio B-/ Bonus B-

High Noon appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.37:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. This became a very strong transfer.

Sharpness consistently looked tight and concise, as very few instances of softness marred the presentation. When we did get lesser than positive delineation, it stemmed from close-ups of actresses or Gary Cooper – and these appeared to stem from attempts to give those actors more favorable portrayals.

Jagged edges and shimmering remained absent, and no edge haloes appeared. The movie also lacked any print flaws.

Blacks looked terrific. Those elements appeared deep and dense, while contrast also succeeded . Shadow detail was smooth and concise as well. I felt highly happy with this great presentation.

As for the film’s DTS-HD MA monaural soundtrack, it seemed suitable for its age. Speech was a little tinny at times, but the lines usually sounded fairly natural when I factored in the era in which they were recorded. To be sure, all dialogue remained easily intelligible, and I noticed no edginess or other problems.

Music and effects also showed good delineation. Though the light score never did much to challenge the track, it seemed to reproduce the source material in a more than acceptable manner. Don’t expect great range, but the score and iconic theme song appeared solid.

Effects fell into the same range, as they showed perfectly decent replication. These elements were reasonably clean and full, and they lacked any noticeable flaws. Nothing here dazzled, but the audio satisfied.

How did this 2016 “Olive Signature” release compare to the 2012 Blu-ray? Audio seemed similar – if not identical – but visuals demonstrated improvements.

The 2012 release suffered from awkward digital tinkering that didn’t impact the 2016 disc. This meant the “Signature” version appeared better defined, cleaner and much more natural than its predecessor.

Other than the film’s trailer, this 2016 “Olive Signature” Blu-ray drops pre-existing extras and replaces them with new ones. These mainly come to us via four featurettes, and these start with the five-minute, 53-second A Ticking Clock.

In this program, Terminator editor Mark Goldblatt discusses the construction and editing of High Noon. He offers a good analysis of various filmmaking elements.

During A Stanley Kramer Production, we get a 14-minute piece with film historian Michael Schlesinger. He chats about producer Kramer’s career, with an emphasis on aspects of High Noon. This turns into another short but effective program.

Next comes the nine-minute, 47-second Imitation of Life: The Blacklist History of High Noon. This delivers notes from history professor Larry Ceplair and blacklisted screenwriter Walter Bernstein.

“Life” goes over the Hollywood Blacklist and its impact on High Noon. We get a nice array of notes in this informative show.

Oscars and Ulcers: The Production History of High Noon goes for 12 minutes, two seconds and features narration from actor Anton Yelchin. As expected, it covers aspects of the film’s creation, and it does so in en efficient manner.

Finally, we move to Uncitizened Kane, a text essay from Sight & Sound editor Nick James. It gives production notes and context for High Noon and becomes a useful piece. Note that the same essay also appears in the package’s booklet.

A classic Western, High Noon holds up well after more than 65 years. It stands as a strong piece of dramatic storytelling that also features a powerful social connection. The Blu-ray provides excellent visuals along with acceptable audio and a decent array of supplements. It’s too bad some prior bonus materials don’t reappear here, but this still becomes the best release of the film.

To rate this film, visit the prior review of HIGH NOON

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