The Naked Spur - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Naked Spur Reviews

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½ October 10, 2016
Disappointing. By far my least favourite Anthony Mann western I've seen.
May 22, 2016
A well made and beautifully shot unusual western. It was the first I had seen Ryan play a different character than what he normally does.
May 11, 2016
The Naked Spur is a tense low key western with only five cast members. A determined bounty hunter wants to bring in an outlaw, and a prospector and a discharged soldier join him, despite him not wanting to split the hefty reward. The movie goes back and forth with psychological tactics, but it can have many corny parts as well. James Stewart gives a different performance from the usual and it has enough verve for a solid western if nothing too amazing.
April 4, 2016
Really awesome movie. Well-paced, great acting all around. One of the best Westerns I've ever seen. I'd challenge anyone who 'Doesn't like westerns' to not like this movie.
½ November 8, 2015
Interesting movie that is a bit dated. Has a psychological thriller aspect. However I felt the ending was lacking.
March 9, 2015
A great western movie!
½ January 21, 2015
A good character-driven western.

While it has some decent action sequences, mostly straight out of the western playbook, The Naked Spur is a mostly a character-driven drama. It is a battle of wills between five people, all with different agendas, views and abilities.

It is also a story of greed, which shapes many of the personal agendas. Feels a bit like Treasure of the Sierra Madre in that regard, though not anywhere near as great a movie.

Plot is a bit basic, but that is mostly fine. It is the interplay between the five antagonists that matters most.

Solid performance from James Stewart in the lead role (as you would expect). He does feel a bit miscast, as here, while the hero, he is not perfect and has a few character flaws. Hard to imagine James Stewart playing a character that was anything less than perfect.

Good support from Janet Leigh, Robert Ryan and Millard Mitchell. Ralph Meeker, as the former Army officer, is a bit hammy.
½ January 1, 2015
Western often features betrayal, but few like this one. Janet Leigh certainly adds fuel to it.
October 20, 2014
Perhaps the best of the remarkable series of westerns produced by the collaboration of James Stewart and director
Anthony Mann, "The Naked Spur" (1953) features Mr. Stewart as far away from Frank Capra's Mr. Smith as it is possible to get. Tremendous support is provided by one of the screen's greatest villains, Robert Ryan, and cast against-type, Janet Leigh. The film also benefits from extensive location filming in the mountains of Colorado.
June 30, 2013
Anthony Mann is one of those directors I'm largely ignorant of so I'm working my way through his filmography starting with this. Wow, what a film! A man hunts down wanted criminal to collect the reward money. He captures him (along with a girl) with the help of a few other characters and they try to make their way to Kansas to get the money. But things are not that easy and black & white, this Western has a lot of great, exciting scenes of adventure but it's also filled with morally ambiguous characters and surprisingly brutal and violent scenes (at least for its time) and occasionally even disturbing. Jimmy Stewart gives one of his career-best performances here, hitting every note beautifully. I will say this is probably one of my favorite Westerns and I've seen a lot of great Westerns.
June 8, 2013
A good film and performance of James Stewart. Wonderful cinematography.
Mr Awesome
Super Reviewer
April 24, 2013
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.
½ April 4, 2013
Five down on their luck people come together in wild country of Colorado. With few options, none should trust anyone else. Then in the last minute the ending is flipped in order to preserve Stewart's good guy persona.
½ March 21, 2013
I watch James Stewart's films for one reason, James Stewart - but so far, there's been a supporting actor who seems to steal the show, and this time around it's Ralph Meeker, as the union soldier. The guy was brilliant.
½ March 12, 2013
"My gracious, what a rousing yarn." --My Grandmother and Me, temporarily fused together.
½ March 1, 2013
Jimmy Stewart in effect had two movie careers; Pre and post World War 2. Prior to World War 2 no one played the average common man, man next door quite a well as Jimmy Stewart. In films like Mr Smith Goes to Washington, Harvey, and It's a Wonderful Life. But he never played the action guy or the hero. When the war came unlike a lot of Hollywood Actors at the time who stayed at home and made patriotic movies and sold war bonds to support the war effort, Jimmy Stewart went to war. He joined the Army Air Corps and flew 25 bomber missions over Germany. When he came home he was a legitimate War Hero. The real deal. Hollywood could no longer pass him over with heroic rolls in film and his movies changed. He acted in a lot of good westerns at the time and this was one of them. A bounty hunter bringing an outlaw to justice runs in to a mix of other people who want a piece of the action even if that means depriving Stewarts character of his.
½ February 23, 2013
Melodramatic western
½ January 1, 2013
It's a western. I'm not a huge fan of the genre but I do like Anthony Mann and James Stewart. Who's the bad guy, who's the good guy? It's o.k. Janet Leigh is so incredibly young that I barely recognized her. I think I like the behind the scenes story than I do the actual movie.
December 7, 2012
An interesting Old West game of cat-and-mouse with a love triangle, as well.
½ November 15, 2012
A fine western with a very human and powerful ending.
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