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I Want to Live!

  NR Closed Captioning

Robert Wise

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Plot Summary

Grim, almost unbearably intense, I Want To Live is the story of the life and execution of Barbara Graham (Susan Hayward) a perjurer, prostitute, liar and drug addict. The product of a broken home, Graham works as a shill, luring gullible men into crooked card games. She attempts to go straight, marries the wrong man, and has a baby. When her life falls apart, she returns to her former profession and is involved in a murder. Despite her claims of innocence, she is convicted and executed. Robert Wise directs the uniformly fine cast with grim efficiency, telling Graham's story in a series of adroitly crafted scenes that won him a well-deserved Academy Award nomination. However, the film belongs to Susan Hayward who gives a intense, shattering performance without one false note. Her performance is so grimly focused that she is, at times, almost unbearable to watch. The final scenes, which lead up to Graham's execution, are exhausting in their emotional intensity as the audience is spared nothing of Graham's agony, despair and desperation when she finally loses the long battle to save her life. Whether one sees Graham as a murderer or a hapless victim of society, the power and relentless, sordid reality of her story leaves an indelible memory in the mind of the viewer.

Customer Reviews

I Want To Live!

Robert Wise, an unsurpassable director, has skilfully crafted a true story into a masterpiece. Susan Hayward is incomparable as Barbara Graham, a convicted murderess, who claims innocence, and Simon Oakland, of West Side Story fame, also directed by Robert Wise, is the reporter who tries to defend her innocence. This fine ensemble cast, along with skillful directing and storytelling, make this movie one that should not be missed. It is a fine addition to any movie collection.

Good but sad film

A really good film,if you can handle this sort of thing,and btw the person who said "How can you buy movies like this and not popular ones like hairspray" uumm your stupid,this movie and all of the 40's and 50's movies are 10000x better than any movie today.

Classic Drama !!!

One day scolling thru TV channles, came across this movie on a cable channel & continued watching it since it peaked my interest. Talk about drama, feelings, emotions! It has all that. I have to say I am not a big fan of older movies, but this is a movie worth watching.