didactic doesn’t even begin to describe this film. it’s so preachy and self-important that it’s impossible to really enjoy the film. it’s a shame, too, because some of the protagonist’s (gary cooper) philosophy is to my liking. in general i’m not a fan of ayn rand’s philosophy, but some of the nietzschean aspects of the ubermensch are appealing to me. i liked his unaffected character and strength, but i found the collectivist vs. individualism dialectic that rand created to be overblown. at times it was more reminiscent of an anti-communist propaganda film than a serious piece of philosophy. in this way it came off as a piece of agitprop mired in the cold war dialectic.
patricia neal came off as somewhat insane in her love for gary cooper. gary cooper was good here, but i preferred him in meet john doe.