During a brief stay in Chicago, innocent farmer's son Lem falls for and weds Kate, a hard-bitten but lonely waitress. Upon bringing her home at the start of harvest time, the honeymoon soon turns into a claustrophobic struggle as they contend with the bitter scorn of his father and the invasive, leering jealousy of the farm's labouring community.
City Girl is a simple story of true love, upheaval and escaping the chores of city life. Mention silent films nowadays and unfortunately most responses will be negative. I find this deeply disappointing, as City Girl is a many tremendous journey and visually beautiful. Presented in its original aspect ratio this is no widescreen presentation yet it is of stunning quality for such an age. The detail, contrast and lighting are a real surprise and mesmerising. City Girl contains several highlights but I really enjoyed the piece with the couple running towards the farmhouse. The camera movement, framing and emotion are of the highest standard and the city scenes capture the chaos and hardship of the period. The release also contains an excellent commentary track from scholar David Kalat that is well worth hearing after you’ve seen the film itself.
Another gem from the silent age and like all the good ones makes you forget your watching a silent by using its visual storytelling that effectively, At its heart it is a simple love story but one that does feature a fair amount of dark moments and one that also delivers memorable scenes by the bucketload that evoke everything from solitude,loneliness anger and joy all shown in a realistic and natural manner. Perfomance wise this one doesnt suffer at all its not that overly dramatic especially in its gestures thats usually associated with the silent era, it was also nice to see a strong willed woman character take the centre stage and to see her stand against the strong violent and domineering Father figure.Although it's not my favourite by Murnau but one i would happily sit through again thanks to its excellent restoration.7+/10