I Want You (1951 film)

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I Want You
I Want You FilmPoster.jpeg
Directed by Mark Robson
Produced by Samuel Goldwyn
Screenplay by Irwin Shaw
Starring Dana Andrews
Dorothy McGuire
Music by Leigh Harline
Cinematography Harry Stradling
Edited by Daniel Mandell
Distributed by RKO Radio Pictures
Release date
  • December 22, 1951 (1951-12-22)
Running time
102 minutes
CountryUnited States
Box office$1.5 million (US rentals) [1]

I Want You is a 1951 film directed by Mark Robson taking place in America during the Korean War. [2] Gordon E. Sawyer was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Sound. [3] [4] [5]



In the "early summer of 1950", Martin Greer is the engineer for a small construction company, Greer and Sons, working with his father. An Army combat engineer for four years during World War II, he and wife Nancy have two young children. Employee George Kress asks Martin to write a letter to the Selective Service System stating that his son, George Jr., is "indispensable" for their company and thus exempt from the draft. Martin reluctantly refuses, and George Jr. joins the Army at the beginning of the Korean War.

Martin's younger brother Jack is in love with college student Carrie Turner, daughter of a judge who is on the local draft board. Despite a trick knee that got him deferred once before, he is drafted. Jack suspects that her father, who feels his daughter can do better, is the reason. Jack and Martin's mother, who lost a son during the last war, asks Martin to write an "indispensable" letter for his brother; he seriously considers it, but does not do so, and Nancy criticizes Jack for his reluctance to serve. Jack joins the Army, where he briefly sees George Jr. before the latter goes to Korea.

Something bad happens to George Jr. (though it is not made clear whether he is dead, badly wounded or missing in action), and his father drunkenly blames Martin. Harvey Landrum, Martin's commander in World War II, reenlists and asks Martin to join him, as engineers who know how to build airstrips are scarce. Eligible for exemptions, he initially declines, then agrees, over his wife's objections. Jack and Carrie marry during a furlough before he also goes overseas.



Leonard Maltin gives the film three out of four stars, describing it as “Dated yet still touching Americana detailing effects of the Korean War on a small-town family. An artifact of its era, with fine performances all around. “ [6]

At the time of its release, Bosley Crowther of The New York Times wrote: “All in all the running crisis of the "cold war" has been absorbed in the cotton padding of sentiment. A straight recruiting poster would be more convincing and pack more dramatic appeal.” [7]

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  1. 'Top Box-Office Hits of 1952', Variety, January 7, 1953
  2. McKay, James (2010). Dana Andrews: The Face of Noir. McFarland. p. 123. ISBN   9780786446148 . Retrieved 17 June 2019.
  3. "The 24th Academy Awards (1952) Nominees and Winners". oscars.org. Retrieved 2011-08-20.
  4. Zimmerman, Steve (2010). Food in the Movies, 2d ed. McFarland. p. 163. ISBN   9780786455690 . Retrieved 17 June 2019.
  5. Ferguson, Michael; Ferguson, Michael S. (2003). Idol Worship: A Shameless Celebration of Male Beauty in the Movies. STARbooks Press. p. 76. ISBN   9781891855481 . Retrieved 17 June 2019.
  6. "I Want You (1951) - Overview - TCM.com". Turner Classic Movies. Retrieved 2020-03-05.
  7. Crowther, Bosley (1951-12-24). "THE SCREEN IN REVIEW; Samuel Goldwyn's 'I Want You' Opens Run at Criterion-- Script by Irwin Shaw". The New York Times. ISSN   0362-4331 . Retrieved 2020-03-05.