Video — 1 online resource (115 minutes) Digital: data file.
Made on location in Germany during the period of the Great Inflation, Isn't Life Wonderful is a tender ode to the resilience of the human spirit and the all-conquering power of love. Carol Dempster delivers her most moving performance as Inga, a Polish war orphan who struggles to provide for the family that has taken her in, while accumulating a meager dowry from the rubble of a depression-stricken Berlin so that she can marry Paul (Neil Hamilton). Returning to his family, weakened by the battlefront's poisonous gases, Paul invests in his and Inga's future by tending a secret garden which he hopes will provide resources for them to live, and which serves as a powerful symbol of the irrepressible optimism of the two young lovers rising triumphantly from the ashes of a bitter earth. Filled with poignant moments reminiscent of Griffith's better-known classics such as A Corner in Wheat and Way Down East, the rarely-seen Isn't Life Wonderful proves Griffith's flair for small-scale, tender drama. This edition features the original 1924 score composed and compiled by Cesare Sodero and Louis Silvers, arranged and performed by Robert Israel (piano) and Galina Golovin (violin).