In his second feature film, Sirk (then still known as Detlef Sierck) crafts a luminous pastoral melodrama from a story by Nobel Prize–winning Swedish writer Selma Lagerlöf. It follows the fortunes of a young, unwed mother (Hansi Knoteck) taken in as a maid by a kindly farmer (Kurt Fischer-Fehling), only to be shunned by his small-minded fiancée. One of Sirk’s first explorations of small-town prejudice—a recurring concern throughout his work—glows with romantic, bucolic imagery and a sincere empathy for its outcast heroine. The result is one of the director’s most sensitive, lyrical films.