I have been excited for Lady Bird ever since the trailer for it came across my television screen. I became even more excited after seeing the article about the polite handwritten letters that director and screenwriter Greta Gerwig sent to ask various musicians for their permission to use their music in her film. It’s this bright, quirky demeanor that led Gerwig to make such a delightful film as this.
Lady Bird stars two-time Academy Award nominee Saoirse Ronan as Christine “Lady Bird” McPherson, a senior at a Catholic school whose dreams are too big to be contained within the city limits of her hometown of Sacramento, California. It also doesn’t help her situation that her mother is terribly overbearing and her first boyfriend turns out to be *spoiler* gay.
I could probably write for a solid hour on how amazing this movie is. It’s the perfect blend of comedy and drama that knows when you need to laugh before bringing you close enough to wipe the tears from your eyes during the sad parts. It’s a relatable tale that makes you feel as though you may have lived a little bit of Lady Bird’s life at some point along your own journey.
For a first time director, Greta Gerwig does an outstanding job. She pieces the film together like a scrapbook. She grabs the important parts of her own story and places them on film to create a cohesive story about Christine’s senior year that never once feels like there’s an unnecessary scene or moment.
The standout performance belongs to the movie’s lead. After making powerful turns in movies like Brooklyn and The Lovely Bones, Saoirse Ronan once again shines as Lady Bird. She brings a unique confidence to the character that makes her stand out against other female leads in teen-centric movies. She gets better every time I see her on screen, and she was pretty darn good to begin with.
I also can’t forget Lucas Hedges and Laurie Metcalf. Hedges does a great job here just like he did in last year’s Manchester by the Sea. He continues to make great choices in what films he wants to be in.
Metcalf’s role as the uptight mother looking out for her daughter will have you laughing at first, but by the end, she’ll be the character that keeps you in tears. Her performance is pure excellence. She’s a frontrunner at next year’s Oscars and after walking out of the theater, I understand why.
To sum it all up, Lady Bird is perfection. It’s a loose collection of snapshots taped together to spell out the message, “you can’t choose where you’re from, but you can choose where you go”. It’s a coming-of-age story that drives you to pursue your goals while also making sure that you keep up with and continue to cherish those that you leave back home. Go see it this weekend.
(I own no photos, opinions are my own)