All I Desire
|All I Desire|
|Directed by||Douglas Sirk|
|Produced by||Ross Hunter|
|Written by||Carol Ryrie Brink (novel)
|Music by||Joseph Gershenson|
|Cinematography||Carl E. Guthrie|
|Edited by||Milton Carruth|
|Distributed by||Universal Pictures|
|Box office||$1.2 million (US)|
Naomi Murdoch abandons her husband and children in Wisconsin, setting off to become an actress and also to flee from an aggressive former suitor, Dutch Heineman. She decides to return 10 years later at the invitation of daughter Lily, who is appearing in a high school play and about to graduate.
Lily is delighted, believing Naomi has become a great success on stage. But the townspeople are concerned about her notoriety. And her school principal husband Henry is unsure how he feels about Naomi being back, as is older daughter Joyce, still bitter about her mother's long abandonment.
At the school play, Dutch can't take his eyes off Naomi. A teacher, Sara Harper, now loves Henry but can tell he still has feelings for his long-absent wife.
Dutch turns up when Naomi goes for a horseback ride with Joyce and boyfriend Russ. Joyce and her boyfriend leave Naomi by the lake and Dutch come forward to embrace Naomi. Naomi refuses his advances and rides home alone. Henry and Naomi reconcile.
Later, Dutch signals that he wants Naomi to meet him at the lake. Naomi goes to tell Dutch that he must leave her alone because she is going to stay with Henry. Dutch says he has been too good to her and tries force himself on her; to fend him off, Naomi uses a riding crop, and struggles with him. During the struggle Dutch's rifle falls and Dutch is accidentally shot. Naomi's son Ted helps take Dutch to a doctor, even though he thinks his mother might have had a romantic rendezvous arranged with Dutch that day.
Naomi believes it would be better for all if she went away. Lily wants to go along, in order to become a famed actress like her mother, whereupon Naomi confesses that her career has actually been a failure. Henry discovers from Dutch's wounds and anger that Naomi wanted nothing more to do with him. He prevents Naomi from leaving, wanting to give their life together another try.
The director, Douglas Sirk, originally shot a darker, sadder ending, but the producer, Ross Hunter, substituted a happier one 
- Barbara Stanwyck as Naomi Murdoch
- Richard Carlson as Henry Murdoch
- Lyle Bettger as Dutch Heineman
- Marcia Henderson as Joyce Murdoch
- Lori Nelson as Lily Murdoch
- Maureen O'Sullivan as Sara Harper
- Richard Long as Russ Underwood
- Billy Gray as Ted Murdoch
- Dayton Lummis as Col. Underwood
- Lotte Stein as Lena Maria Svenson
- Fred Nurney as Hans Peterson
Richard Long has a horse-riding scene with Stanwyck. Thirteen years later, Long played Stanwyck's eldest son in the TV western series The Big Valley (1966).
- 'The Top Box Office Hits of 1953', Variety, January 13, 1954
- The Barbara Stanwyck Collection, Universal Backlot Series, 2010
- All I Desire at the Internet Movie Database
- All I Desire at the TCM Movie Database
- All I Desire at AllMovie
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