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Johnny Guitar [Blu-ray] (1954)

Joan Crawford , Sterling Hayden , Nicholas Ray  |  NR |  Blu-ray
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (85 customer reviews)

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Johnny Guitar [Blu-ray] + High Noon: 60th Anniversary Edition [Blu-ray] + The Quiet Man (60th Anniversary Special Edition) [Blu-ray]
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Product Details

  • Actors: Joan Crawford, Sterling Hayden, Mercedes McCambridge, Scott Brady, Ernest Borgnine
  • Directors: Nicholas Ray
  • Writers: Philip Yordan
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Blu-ray, Original recording remastered, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region A/1 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.37:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Olive Films
  • DVD Release Date: August 7, 2012
  • Run Time: 110 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (85 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0082LUGPI
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #84,658 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

This one-of-a-kind western stars Joan Crawford as a saloon owner battling the local townspeople headed by Emma (Mercedes McCambridge), the local sexually repressed, lynch-happy female rancher out to frame her for a string of robberies. The title character played by Sterling Hayden is a guitar-strumming drifter with a dark past who was once in love with Crawford and has been offered a job in her saloon. Nicholas Ray's epic western is considered on the most original westerns of all time - the women are far tougher than the men and some saw in the film a bizarre allegory for the McCarthy era Red Scare. In addition to the stars, Johnny Guitar is well stocked with great supporting players, including Ernest Borgnine, Scott Brady, Ward Bond, Paul Fix, Royal Dano and John Carradine. Classic score title song written by Peggy Lee and the film's composer Victor Young and sung by Peggy Lee.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
33 of 35 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Review of Johnny Guitar Blu-Ray August 8, 2012
By Phillip
Format:Blu-ray|Verified Purchase
I pre ordered and received the blu-ray today.....finally my own copy of this American classic!

The restoration and transfer are magnificent..................most of the movie looks like it was shot yesterday....this film is known for its color palatte and the rendering of color and image far surpasses any tv version I have ever seen. Watching this blu-ray is like watching Johnny Guitar for the first time. The soundtrack is crystal clear....all in all Olive Films did a great job.

In addition to the excellent introduction by Martin Scorsese, I would have liked a commentary track or in depth documentary..............the stories about the making of this movie are the stuff of epic myth..believe me, the negative chemistry off screen between Joan and Mercedes comes through on screen in spades. Mecedes gives a performance for the ages in this film.

If you love this movie like I do, this is a must have...............highest possible recommendation.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best This Film Has Ever Looked on Home Video August 16, 2012
Format:Blu-ray|Verified Purchase
I've seen JOHNNY GUITAR many times over the years, in 16mm and 35mm film prints, on VHS and television broadcast. Almost every previous presentation has been plagued by poor color and image clarity. The new Blu-ray from Olive Films and Paramount is stunning. Color and detail are excellent, especially when you consider this film was shot in Republic's less than stellar Trucolor process. Yes, there's been a bit of grain reduction to the image, but it's not significant in my opinion. The film was also shown in most theaters at the time in a 1.85 aspect ratio, though the Blu-ray is full screen open matte. There is a bit too much head room in some shots, but it's not a big issue. I'm just glad to have the film on Blu-ray looking as good as it does.
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
Format:VHS Tape
JOHNNY GUITAR is a very enjoyable western melodrama with Joan Crawford, strikingly filmed in colour, as Vienna the misunderstood saloon owner who spearheads the drive for a railroad to be built through her small town. She comes under the hatred and scorn of her fellow townsfolk, not the least of which a scary pariah called Emma Small (played wonderfully by Mercedes McCambridge in another of her trademark characters with bull-dyke tendencies). Vienna's only help lies in her former love, Johnny Guitar (Sterling Hayden). When Vienna is accused of taking part in a robbery it sets into motion a chain of events that could end in her lynching...

This film is a hair's breath from being high-camp. Joan Crawford plays Vienna in her usual style, exchanging insults and threats with McCambridge in the film's most memorable scenes. A choice line of McCambridge is "She's nuthin' but a railroad tramp". Watching their scenes made me think of Faye Dunaway and Diana Scarwid in MOMMIE DEAREST, they seem to create the same energy on screen, perhaps they watched JOHNNY GUITAR in preparing for their performances?...

JOHNNY GUITAR is more than a western, and a must-see for fans of Crawford.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars WILD, WILD WEST....CRAWFORD & NICHOLAS RAY STYLE November 8, 2003
Bizarre Western directed by the great Nicholas Ray and starring Joan Crawford as Vienna, a tough saloon/casino owner. Vienna is waiting for a railroad to come through to make her business boom but Emma Small (Mercedes McCambridge) wants her dead. Emma hates Vienna supposedly because The Dancin' Kid (Scott Brady) likes Vienna instead of her. Vienna hires Johnny Guitar (Sterling Hayden) to play guitar in the saloon. They are old lovers from Vienna's dance-hall girl days. But all hell breaks loose when a bank robbery goes wrong and Emma implicates Vienna as the leader and leads a posse to lynch her. Vienna is rescued and takes refuge in the Dancin' Kid's hideout. Emma and Vienna will face off before it's over. Incredible tale written by Philip Yordan and laden with symbolism that has caused some to compare this film to the McCarthy witch hunts of the 50's. It's a fascinating piece all right. It's in color and features a great supporting cast with Ernest Borgnine, Ward Bond and John Carradine. McCambridge is pure hellfire as the self-righteous Emma and Crawford is noble and stoic as Vienna and supposedly did her own stunts. Allegedly, Crawford and McCambridge despised each other on the set and this information kind've adds to the fun of the film. Peggy Lee sings the haunting title ballad. A must see. Watch for it.
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29 of 36 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars best-western January 10, 2007
Format:VHS Tape
Joan really is the actress of the 20th Century, and beyond... In the 1950's during a boring time in her career (this movie is smack-dab in the middle of Torch Song and the even more obscure, "Female On The Beach") she decided to re-invent herself as a western rebel in "Johnny Guitar." However I hate to admit it, but "Johnny Guitar" is one of those incredibly rare Joan Crawford movies that I would have thoroughly munched on even if she weren't in it!

Oh, before I forget, here's the particulars of this cult-classic:
Johnny Guitar (May 27, 1954) (Studio: Republic)
Distributor: Paramount (Although correct me if I'm wrong, but I honestly believe that Turner/Warner Home Video has their hand in just about all of Joan's films, even those that aren't from the MGM or Warners libraries.)
Director: Nicholas Ray
Runtime Listing: 110 mins
Color/BW: Color (Trucolor)
(Joan played: Vienna)
Brief Synopsis:
A lady saloon owner battles a female rancher out to frame her for murder.

And here's the main cast (actually, these are my favorites, from the main cast!:)
Joan Crawford ~ The Star of the Show ~ Vienna
Mercedes McCambridge ~ Emma Small
Sterling Hayden ~ Johnny 'Guitar' Logan
Scott Brady ~ Dancin' Kid
Ben Cooper ~ Turkey Ralston
Ernest Borgnine ~ Bart Lonergan
Royal Dano ~ Corey
Frank Ferguson ~ Marshal Williams

"Johnny Guitar" is actually based on a novel by Roy Chanslor and is undisputedly the granddaddy of the Female Western Film, because it proudly serves as the original prototype of this genre. It's also a little known-fact that there really was a real Johnny "Guitar!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best westerns ever made
This 1954 Nicholas Ray western must be ranked as one of the very best on grounds of originality alone. Read more
Published 8 days ago by Film Buff
4.0 out of 5 stars as a kid I Really enjoyed it.
I saw this movie in 1954, as a kid I Really enjoyed it.
Published 18 days ago by Laverne Wyles
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
wasn't quite like I remembered. But good.
Published 1 month ago by Linda C. Britoon
4.0 out of 5 stars And now a gunfight catfight. In left corner, wearing red, Vienna the...
I liked this atypical and deservedly famous 1954 western. Below, more of my impressions, with some limited SPOILERS. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Darth Maciek
5.0 out of 5 stars The West is the best
For a full description of the plot, etc., read other reviews. Just some thoughts on this classic... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Joker
4.0 out of 5 stars What a movie!
What a movie! What is it , a western , a chick flick , film noir, serious, or campy ? Whatever it was I loved it!
Published 2 months ago by William Marsee
5.0 out of 5 stars The most popular American Western Film in France........
Mercedes McCambridge to Joan Crawford, "I'm going to kill you." Joan Crawford's response "I know, if I don't kill you first". Read more
Published 2 months ago by Richard Davis McLeod
5.0 out of 5 stars johnny guitar
Johnny Guitar is a great western with a great cast. The situation of love, jealousy, revenge can easily transcend to todays time. Just a great movie.
Published 4 months ago by thierry vick
5.0 out of 5 stars Joan Crawford - A Western
Yes, Joan Crawford in a Western. Well, a surprise for you Crawford fans who always see her very dramatic roles which she excelled. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Paul H. May
3.0 out of 5 stars Old Sedona
Having lived in Sedona in 1954, I wanted to go back in time to recall how it looked before development spoiled the place. Read more
Published 5 months ago by F. Ashley
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