After tracking down prodigal playboy Philippe Greenleaf (Ronet) at the behest of his industrialist father, Tom Ripley (Delon) gets a taste of Greenleaf’s luxurious lifestyle on the Italian coast. Soon, Ripley has taken to the life, and forgetting his obligation, befriends Greenleaf. But Ripley’s envy of his host’s wealth and engagement to gorgeous Marge (Laforet) builds to a sinister climax after his own funds are cut off.
This French version of Barbara Highsmith’s "The Talented Mr. Ripley" delivers creepy thrills in a fetching Southern Italian locale. Delon, in his breakthrough role, plays the dashingly amoral Ripley with cunning savoir-faire, and Nino Rota's eerie score accentuates his darkest instincts. Masterfully helmed by Rene Clement, "Noon" hews closer to Highsmith's tense storyline than Anthony Minghella's 1999 remake, and — to my mind — is sexier and more compelling as a result.