Although Bridges had been acting in films for 18 years and had played in numerous Westerns, director Fred Zinnemann chose Bridges to play the youthful deputy Harvey Pell in High Noon (1952), his most famous Western role. The young deputy, seeking to bolster his reputation, eagerly anticipates sheriff Will Kane’s (Gary Cooper) departure from town in the face of the coming showdown. Kane sees through Pell’s weak character and knows that no help will be forthcoming. Besides, Pell has taken Kane’s place in the exotic Helen Ramirez’s (Katy Jurado) affections. A memorable scene is a brutal fight inside the livery barn, which nearly wears down the sheriff just before he must face Frank Miller (Ian MacDonald) and his gang at noon.

Historical Dictionary of Westerns in Cinema. . 2012.

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