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GOAT Love [Stephanie Quist, USA, 2020]

Playful with both its form and tone, Stephanie Quist’s GOAT Love is a colourful silent film with a sweet love story at its core. Even though the intertitles are sparse, it is easy to guess what the lovebirds are communicating to each other through the lead’s enthusiastic performances. Although somewhat predictable, the film as a whole is charming enough to make it worth the watch.

The film follows Caitlin (played by Caitlin Rose) who meets her lover Joe (played by Joe Casterline) at his motorised yacht where they have a lot of fun in each other’s company. The reflections of a sunset upon the sea serves as a backdrop to their activities, giving the film a dreamlike visual style. It’s both romantic and fantastical as each sequence with them together paints them as a perfect match despite their odd situation. Rose and Casterline have great chemistry, playing off each other with bounces in their steps.

There are times when the colour grading seems to be a bit off where shots that follow each other don’t quite match sequentially that may be distracting. Despite this, the intertitles are used in a creative manner, with classical Hollywood designs merging with a modern twist to help heighten the emotional highs and lows of the story. The music is upbeat and joyful, which matches the overarching tone of the film.

Overall, GOAT Love takes a unique approach to familiar topics of romance alongside the conventions of silent films. At times, it does falter in its execution but those moments are rare, much like jolly love stories and silent films themselves.


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