JOHNNY GUITAR

Director Nicholas Ray
Year 1954
Starring Joan Crawford, Mercedes McCambridge, Sterling Hayden
Run Time 110min
More Info IMDb

An off-kilter but intriguingly sensational western about a saloon-madam Vienna (Joan Crawford) who learns that her wealth and power can’t buy everything as a town full of jealous landowners try to overrun her property. The eponymous male (Sterling Hayden) of Ray’s western gender and genre-bender is the film’s object of desire; a trophy cowboy returned, feuded over by the two women who wear the pants in this wild west town: Joan Crawford and the sexually frustrated rancher Emma McCall (Mercedes McCambridge). Nicholas Ray's1954 masterpiece is one of the all-time left-field wonders of the studio system, a film so subversive it's a wonder it ever got made.

Relentlessly feminist, JOHNNY GUITAR examines the costs of a woman’s independent action through lurid, violent exaggeration. A pop-culture madhouse dressed up in spurs and a cowboy hat.

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