John Ford weaves three "Judge Priest" stories together to form a good- natured exploration of honour and small-town politics in the South around the turn of the century. Judge William ... See full summary »
Richard Girard is part of a New Orleans family working closely with the English Warburtons. When Richard meets Mary Warburton she is engaged to Erik von Gerardt. He does wed Mary but their time in America is financially difficult.
Judge William "Billy" Priest lives in a very patriotic (Confederate) southern town. Priest plays a laid-back, widowed judge who helps uphold the law in his toughest court case yet. In the meantime, he plays matchmaker for his young nephew.Written by
Opening card: The figures in this story are familiar ghosts of my own boyhood. The war between the states was over, but its tragedies and comedies haunted every grown man's mind, and the stories that were swapped took deep root in my memory. There was one man Down Yonder I came especially to admire for he seemed typical of the tolerance of that day and the wisdom of that almost vanished generation. I called him Judge Priest, and I tried to draw reasonably fair likenesses of him and his neighbors and the town in which we lived. An old Kentucky town in 1890. --- --- Irvin S. Cobb See more »
Simple mastery, masterful simplicity: a great work
John Ford adopts and works within the conventions of this homespun genre. As he did with the genre of every film he made. Yes, racial stereotyping -- but Ford knew it was, and let you see it for what it was. Yes, sentimental and corny, but knowing and loving that way, presenting it for what you the viewer want to make of it.
After seventy years, still so funny, so affectionate, so insightful. And topical for 2003: is there any better depiction of populist politics, or expression of faith in the democratic mystery of the common man?
The art that conceals art. Try to see it on a film-projected screen. I'm off to look at THE SUN SHINES BR
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