This pleasing romantic comedy was surprisingly light fare from director Martin Ritt. Though it contains little evidence of the social commentary of such Ritt productions as The Great White Hope or The Front, Murphy is set in the director's favorite milieu: rural America. The film's unhurried pace and genuine performances successfully capture the feel of bucolic, small-town life. James Garner earned his first Oscar nomination for a typically good-humored turn as the title character. Sally Field, who won her first Academy Award in Ritt's Norma Rae, is similarly charming.