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The Godless Girl

Released Mar 30, 1929 1h 30m Drama List
Reviews 65% Audience Score 100+ Ratings When militant atheist Judy (Lina Basquette) organizes a society for non-believers at her high school, devout Christian Bob (George Duryea) leads an attack against them. In the ensuing fray, one of the atheists is killed, and both Judy and Bob are sent to a reform school dominated by a sadistic guard (Noah Beery). The two fall for each other and escape to the countryside, where Judy finds her faith in God. They're soon recaptured, but their love helps them endure the harsh conditions. Read More Read Less

Audience Reviews

View All (24) audience reviews
Audience Member was DeMille's final film 4 Pathe b4 moving 2 MGM then finally Paramount Rated 2.5 out of 5 stars 01/21/23 Full Review Audience Member Typical DeMille fare: overwrought, melodramatic and a lot of fun. Rated 3.5 out of 5 stars 02/27/23 Full Review Audience Member The dated, preachy elements actually make it more interesting than it would probably be otherwise. As with most Hollywood films of this era, it's a predictable, over the top melodrama heavy on one-dimensional characters and plot contrivances. But DeMille's sure-handed cinematic storytelling keep it compelling and entertaining with a number of impressive sequences. Rated 3 out of 5 stars 01/28/23 Full Review Audience Member A predictable melodrama, to be sure, but in 1929 it was undoubtedly more fresh. This is DeMille's last silent and it is technically superior to most anything else you'll find made that year. DeMille has an eventual point to make about belief, but he is wickedly even-handed condemning the scheming atheists and the thuggy Christians for the crime that sends our principles to the hellish reformatories. then the whole feature makes a nice balance of social reform picture, escaped convict picture, and romance. The performances tend toward very broad strokes, but DeMille has a great way of framing shots to keep the scenes interesting. Rated 3.5 out of 5 stars 02/04/23 Full Review Audience Member It's Atheism vs. Christianity, 1920s style! Directed by the great Cecil B. DeMille, The Godless Girl is a provocative look of fanatic beliefs and struggling humanity that eventually turns into a cute and wonderful love story. The Godless Girl begins in a high school where The Girl, (a.k.a. Judy), is beginning "The Atheist Society". The Boy, (a.k.a. Bob), doesn't like this. A riot between the athiests and christians leads to a death of a girl and sends Judy, Bob and his friend to an cruel and inhumaine reform school. All of a sudden living in a society where two groups can express opposing beliefs doesn't seem all that bad. Now that The Boy and Girl are equally struggling desperately, though they are seperated by an electric fence, a love grows between them as they plot an escape. What begins kind of cartoonish finnishes as a powerhouse of emotion and suspence. The cartoonish and steriotypical beginning is like an equilizer. No side is justified, just presented at it's most ruthless in a society where you can do that. But abusing those rights can lead to them being taken away, once our freedom is taken away, all that remains is a humanity that is in each in every one of us. This is a beautiful and pretty damn romantic movie, but it's also an unsettling story because it reminds us that reform schools as horrible as the one in this movie do exist, but are much worse. Surprisingly this movie isn't just a dramatic, emotion movie, it's actually written quite intelligently with creative details, weird slang, but some great moments. What would be DeMille's last silent movie would also be his first sound movie. Confused? Only DeMille could pull it off. The Godless Girl is one of DeMille's lesser known movies, and it's surprising to see a regular style movie made by a director infamous for making epics. But DeMille still goes crazy with the budget and makes one hell of a good looking movie, especially for one made in 1928. There's some great cinematography to capture the exciting and romantic moments, and the films editing and structure of the scenes builds up for some wonderful suspence. But what's definitely impressive is the sets. A fight scene choreographed on one big staircase set is filmed very well, and a whole building was built for this movie to look like a reform.... well lets call it a prison, it really did look like a horrible place. But the interior and exterior sets look fantastic, and filmed just as well too. Make no mistake, just because this isn't a DeMille epic, doesn't mean that DeMille didn't push his ability and his actors as if he was making an epic. And if you see the latest restoration you'll hear a wonderful soundtrack as well. You're never going to see a film like The Godless Girl again. This movie was made in a time where religious and political views weren't liberalized in movies to please the general audience. This movie has a message whether people liked it or not. But what's even better is that this movie doesn't pick sides. There is no moral at the end whether The Girl or The Boy was right and the other wrong. This is a movie about humanity, and it will go to awkward and risky lengths to show that kind of movie. But what's even greater is that The Godless Girl can still appeal to modern audiences and culture today. Rated 5 out of 5 stars 01/25/23 Full Review Audience Member Technically superb but DeMille's reform message is hampered by an outrageous storyline and odd performances ranging from hammy (Beery) to annoyingly goofy (Quillan). Rated 2.5 out of 5 stars 01/26/23 Full Review Read all reviews
The Godless Girl

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Movie Info

Synopsis When militant atheist Judy (Lina Basquette) organizes a society for non-believers at her high school, devout Christian Bob (George Duryea) leads an attack against them. In the ensuing fray, one of the atheists is killed, and both Judy and Bob are sent to a reform school dominated by a sadistic guard (Noah Beery). The two fall for each other and escape to the countryside, where Judy finds her faith in God. They're soon recaptured, but their love helps them endure the harsh conditions.
Director
Cecil B. DeMille
Distributor
Pathé Exchange Inc.
Production Co
C.B. DeMille Productions
Genre
Drama
Release Date (Theaters)
Mar 30, 1929, Original
Runtime
1h 30m