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The Naked Spur (1953)

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Average Rating: N/A
Critic Reviews: 1
Fresh: 1 | Rotten: 0

audience

76

liked it
Average Rating: 3.7/5
User Ratings: 2,228

My Rating

Movie Info

The powerhouse combination of star James Stewart and director Anthony Mann score another cinematic bullseye in The Naked Spur. Stewart plays a taciturn frontiersman who loses his home while he's off fighting the Civil War. To raise enough money for a new grubstake, Stewart becomes a bounty hunter in Colorado territory. His first quarry is fugitive, killer Robert Ryan. Stewart's efforts to bring in Ryan and collect the reward are compromised by the presence of Ryan's loyal girl friend Janet Leigh

PG,

Western, Classics

Sam Rolfe, Harold Jack Bloom

Aug 15, 2006

MGM Home Entertainment

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All Critics (16) | Top Critics (4) | Fresh (11) | Rotten (0) | DVD (5)

This 1953 film has Janet Leigh in jeans, beautiful location shooting (and Technicolor cinematography) in the Rockies, and some of the most intense psychological warfare to be found in [director Anthony] Mann's angular and anguished oeuvre.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Chicago Reader | Comment (1)
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

This rock-solid Western is brisk, terse, and full of excellent performances..and for once, a Jimmy Stewart film doesn't find its leading man stealing the show!

September 19, 2010 Full Review Source: Film and Felt
Film and Felt

His every move meets resistance. In this grim cavalcade of paranoia on the hoof, the verbal jabs never let up.

May 5, 2010 Full Review Source: East Bay Express
East Bay Express

In this taut revenge Western, from Oscar-nominated script by Sam Rolfe and Harold Jack Bloom, Jimmy Stewart gives one of his best performances, revealing a darker facet to his screen persona that only a superb director like Anthony Mann could bring out

March 1, 2007 Full Review Source: EmanuelLevy.Com
EmanuelLevy.Com

Mann never failed to deliver an astonishing ending to his Westerns, but this is one of his best.

September 8, 2006 Full Review Source: Combustible Celluloid
Combustible Celluloid

...an engrossing little film that doesn't flinch from showing us the worst in people, including the hero.

August 10, 2006 Full Review Source: Movie Metropolis
Movie Metropolis

Wonderfully intense psychological Western built around a simple story of greed and the chance to start life over again after failure.

July 1, 2005 Full Review Source: Ozus' World Movie Reviews
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

One of Stewart's best tortured performances, showing his dark side. A must-see for Stewart buffs.

August 15, 2002
Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN)

Audience Reviews for The Naked Spur

As "The Naked Spur" opens, Jimmy Stewart has met an old prospector up in the hills and has hired him on to help track down a dangerous fugitive. This is all the set up required for this movie, as the film takes place wholly within these mountains and forests, and with the exception of the nameless indians who attack them, involves just five people. There's Stewart as Kemp, an amateur bounty hunter, out to get the money needed to buy back his ranch, Jesse the prospector (Millard Mitchell) and Roy the dishonorably discharged, indian-hunting soldier (Ralph Meeker). The three men have been thrown together by chance in order to bring Ben (Robert Ryan) back to justice, along with a young woman (Janet Leigh) Ben has snatched up along the way. Roy isn't very trustworthy, as his constant smiling demeanor lets us know. But it's the prisoner Ben who is the most fearsomely manipulative. He knows it's his neck that's going to be in the noose when they get back, and he tries everything in his power to squirm his way out of the rope they've got him in. The Naked Spur has more than a little in common with "The Treasure of the Sierra Madre", only instead of gold, the treasure is the outlaw. Stewart is in his own way, as hard as Bogart from that film, but Stewart's character is offered a happy ending, if he so chooses to accept it. In that way, The Naked Spur tries to offer a more redeeming morality in the end, and it's not necessarily for the better.
April 24, 2013
Mr Awesome
Devon Bott

Super Reviewer

One-dimensional characters and corny situations stand between The Naked Spur and broad appeal. Still, Jimmy Stewart can make ANY script seem interesting and plausible.
February 11, 2011
flixsterman
Randy Tippy

Super Reviewer

Another boring confusing stupid western that I did not like. Of course there are good actors in this movie, so maybe you'd like it if you like westerns.
November 7, 2010
ajv2688

Super Reviewer

Better than average western benefits from strong direction, beautiful color photography and most of all an excellent cast. Jimmy Stewart is properly gruff and driven and Janet Leigh is fine but her part isn't that strong. However the great Robert Ryan is smoothly evil and the undervalued Ralph Meeker wonderful as someone he always played well the conflicted heel who could be counted on in the end.
April 8, 2010
jjnxn
jay nixon

Super Reviewer

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Foreign Titles

  • L'Appāt (FR)
  • Colorado Jim (ES)
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