- Cult Classic: It was a box-office hit in its day but was seen by many, such as Gore Vidal as plainly too weird and kitschy to be taken seriously. Yet it had a strong cult in America and Europe. Many fans of the film like it precisely because of its weirdness and kitchiness.
- Evil Is Cool: Mercedes McCambridge's Emma Small is a charismatic and dangerous woman, an excellent gunslinger and gives awesome speeches.
- Foe Yay: Emma and Vienna, Johnny Guitar and the Dancin' Kid. Emma's obsession with Vienna even has shades of If I Can't Have You... and some have interpreted her as a self-hating lesbian, though within the film it's implied that Emma likes the Dancin' Kid and is jealous of his feelings for Vienna (which some see as a Censor Decoy since Emma murders the Dancin' Kid in the finale without a second thought).
- Germans Love David Hasselhoff: The film has a huge following in France and the rest of Europe where it's seen as one of the greatest Westerns ever made. It's reputation in America is a little mixed but has a small and growing cult.
- Values Resonance: A bunch of rural folk driven to mob violence by a charismatic speaker who makes nativist appeals against outsiders stealing your jobs and women, makes the film of continuous relevance well into the 21st Century, as does its focus on the dangers of gun violence.
YMMV / Johnny Guitar