In his biography, It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World: A Life in Hollywood, Stanley Kramer had this to say about his film High Noon: “It’s a story filled with tense anticipation but very little action. Since all those who read it thought of it as a Western, they expected to see guns blazing and horses galloping everywhere. In our minds, though, it wasn’t an action picture. We didn’t even think of it as a Western.”
As Kramer suggests, the film is certainly not a typical, classic cycle western. High Noon marks a stark departure from audience expectations by mixing classical genre conventions with new revisionist twists and aesthetics. The film puts a microscope on human nature, exploring a new level of emotional, moral and societal depth never before seen in primitive or classical cycles of western genre.