While I don’t have as strong as an immediate emotional draw to this as I had something like Frankenstein or Corner in Wheat, I can definitely recognize that this is a huge leap forward in cinematic storytelling for one solid gold reason: Mary. Pickford’s. Face.
Even with intertitles so vague as to be nothing but gesture, this story is so, so easy to follow simply because of 1: how emotive and expressive Pickford is (not just in the big, hammy theatrical way, but in the soft, imperceptible way between big emotions) and 2: the fact that Griffith knows this and lets her face fill up so much of the screen in so much focus. While this isn’t anywhere near close-ups, you can so easily tell that the production behind Ramona clearly realizes that despite what other outlets may think audiences want, the face is the future of film.