7.4/10
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You Only Live Once (1937)

Passed | | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir | 29 January 1937 (USA)
The public defender's secretary and an ex-convict get married and try to make a life together, but a series of disasters sends their lives spiraling out of control.

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(screenplay), (screenplay) (as Graham Baker)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Joan Graham
...
Eddie Taylor
...
Stephen Whitney
...
Bonnie Graham
...
Father Dolan
...
Dr. Hill
...
Ethan (as Chic Sale)
...
Hester
...
Buggsy
...
Roger (as Guinn Williams)
...
Warden Wheeler
Walter De Palma ...
Monk Mendall
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Storyline

Joan is the secretary to the public defender in a large city. She is in love with a career criminal named Eddie, and she believes that he is a basically good person who just had some tough breaks. She uses her influence to get him released early, and he tries to go straight after marrying her, but things don't work out, and they both go on the lam. Written by Tim Horrigan <horrigan@eworld.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

He robbed... kidnapped... he murdered... Because of the love of one woman! See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Film-Noir

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

29 January 1937 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Three Time Loser  »

Box Office

Budget:

$575,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Noiseless Recording Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

PCA director Joseph I. Breen objected to the robbery scene details which were against the production code. Specifically, he listed "no flash of a man's face contorted with agony, no showing of a woman lying on the sidewalk, no hurling of bombs, no cop lying on the street, his face contorted with pain, no truck crushing out the life of a cop, no terrible screaming, no shots of bodies lying around, no figure of a little girl huddled in death, no shrieks." The print received by the PCA ran 100 minutes, and it is clear from the released print that some of these items and other scenes were cut, and the PCA finally gave it an approved certificate. See more »

Quotes

Joan Graham: We may never find happiness
[says Joan during the escape]
Joan Graham: but we have the right to live.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Amália (2008) See more »

Soundtracks

A Thousand Dreams of You
(1936) (uncredited)
Music by Louis Alter
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User Reviews

 
Gritty Drama
7 May 2006 | by See all my reviews

During the Depression, a young couple goes on the lam after the man is accused of a crime. This gritty drama is an early example of film noir, expertly directed by Lang, the great Expressionist filmmaker, although he sometimes goes overboard with the symbolism. Lang explored similar themes in Fury (with Sidney in a similar role to this), made a year earlier, but this one is better, not marred by the melodrama and overacting of the earlier film. Fonda and Sidney are excellent as the unfortunate couple, helped by a fine supporting cast. Memorable scenes include the escape from prison, tinged with irony, and the finale, as the couple makes a run for the border.


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