This is the story of a young man's slow transition into the woman he always knew he was meant to be. Roy/Wendy played by Anne Heywood takes the plunge, leaving her abusive father's house and starting life anew as a woman. Through trial and error she learns the skills and consequences of being a woman as well as the terrible problems involved in not being considered fully female.
The look of the film is total 70's complete with bellbottoms and sappy soundtrack. The story is also somewhat unrealistic. For example, Wendy is able to become fully passable with only a short time of practicing in private. The film goes on to explore many interesting consequences of a life "under cover" when all she wants is a simple life as a normal woman. With all it's obvious faults, "I Want What I Want" contains some surprisingly touching and sensitive moments. And although it appears to have been a very cheap production, the filmmakers manage to do quite a lot with their limited resources. For example, background sounds of cars and dogs during some of Wendy's terrifying moments in public give an eerily realistic feel.
I always find it disappointing when a woman is cast for the part of a man pretending to be a woman. "Victor Victoria" is a fine film using the same gimmick but I find it very difficult to see Julie Andrews as a man even though she gives about the best performance she was capable of. The same goes for this film. Contrast that with "The Crying Game" where the illusion is perfect due to exceptional casting.
Probably controversial in it's time, "I Want What I Want" is a clearly a small film but one worth watching by anyone interested transgender issues.
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