During the early days of World War II, the fate of Western Europe hangs on the newly-appointed British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, who must decide whether to negotiate with Adolf Hitler, or fight on against incredible odds.
Kristin Scott Thomas
Set over one summer, the film follows precocious six-year-old Moonee as she courts mischief and adventure with her ragtag playmates and bonds with her rebellious but caring mother, all while living in the shadows of Walt Disney World.
Christine "Lady Bird" MacPherson is a high school senior from the "wrong side of the tracks." She longs for adventure, sophistication, and opportunity, but finds none of that in her Sacramento Catholic high school. LADY BIRD follows the title character's senior year in high school, including her first romance, her participation in the school play, and most importantly, her applying for college. Written by
Another gem that impressed me much has arrived, and I want to give this sassy girl top marks!
Whaddayasay, this Oscar season just keeps giving and giving. Another gem that impressed me much has arrived in Estonian cinemas, and I want to give this sassy girl top marks!
It's a story of an artistically inclined girl calling herself Lady Bird (Saoirse Ronan) who doesn't know how to be a kid any more, and tries to search for purpose beyond the familiar confines on school, family, etc.
Also appearing, Laurie Metcalf, Tracy Letts, Beanie Feldstein, Lucas Hedges, Timothée Chalamet, Jordan Rodrigues, Marielle Scott, Lois Smith, Stephen Henderson, Odeya Rush, making up a wonderful cast of characters among which I very much enjoyed spending some time with.
"Lady Bird" is not just authentic, sweet, funny, and well realised screen story about the pains of escaping the teenage-dom. It raises the bar for all movies about being young and trying to find yourself.
Your regular coming of age (growing up) movie is mostly about showing situations and events that lead to the character(s) realizing something about adult life. You know, partying, fooling around, heartbreaks and what have you.
"Lady Bird" reaches deeper and reminds how it exactly feels to be in that stage - if one has been able to escape this at all, of course.
I don't remember any other coming of age story so precisely mirroring this bleak no man's land of being able to realize that there's more to life than this but not really grasping the huge role of personal responsibility which comes with the adult life.
Including the notion that the change of scenery or any other external change doesn't equal to real change itself, because whereever we choose to go and whatever we do, we take our basic problems and perspectives along.
(It's exactly what I think the biblical story of Adam and Eve being forced to leave the paradise means, by the way. Or the story of Buddha, or Hero's Journey, if mentioning Bible would make you look at me funny or something.)
All this mirroring comes through the main character, of course, which makes her an intriguing character in herself, defying easy characterizations that would put her on the same level with most of the young persons searching themselves that we see in mainstream movies.
I am also very impressed by the creative style of the author Greta Gerwig, the writer-director of this joint. Many of the scenes are actually quite short but she has never failed to capture a lot of meaningful content in every snapshot that she offers about the characters' lives.
The dialogue, the acting, the atmosphere, the duration - everything is so sharp, precise, and to the point. I would say there's no filler material, like, at all. Everything is in its right place, carries enough meaning to justify being there and leaves its mark during watching. There's nothing that I would leave out. In this sense, I'd compare the result to good poetry. In a world full of 2+ hour movies which have only medium amount of meaningful content, we need more movies like this!
In addition to that, although the titular character is very much at the center of the story, Gerwig somehow has found enough empathy and ways to make everybody else on the screen live and breathe, too. They are not just figures to fill the scene and help make everything move along.
Everybody feels like their own person, no matter how little screen time or impact on the story s/he has. Many are used for comedic purposes, but this doesn't subtract from their intrinsic value.
For all this, I think that "Lady Bird" deserves the highest score available - because it's good and could not be better in any reasonable and meaningful way. Of course, nothing suits everybody, but the movie is perfect as it is. It felt so fresh that it made me feel as if this is the first coming of age movie I've ever seen.
As always with state of the mind movies - more interested in the psychological state of the mind the characters are in, than just events - you have to find some strong connection point to relate to, in order to fully enjoy the movie.
But if you manage to do that, you may be in for a real treat. If you don't, you will be bored because not much "happens". You know, the same way as "Curb Your Enthusiasm" and "Seinfeld" are shows about nothing.
The critics seem to agree, by the way: 99/100 and 94/100 from Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic, respectively.
Based on what I heard eavesdropping the others leaving the cinema, I got a feeling that although "Lady Bird" is about the problems of growing up, it's much more suited to a bit more mature audience of movie lovers, who have already realized in their hearts that the burning question brought forth here - what's my purpose, anyway? - never really goes away.
I am not sure that teenager can truly appreciate how important this question will grow in time, and how much weight it can have on our personal secret lives.
All in all, "Lady Bird" is enjoyable and nuanceful movie, both able to lift you up with brightness that some are able to only compare with being young, and make you think about uncomfortable question that life brings if you are not able to just "belong to the herd".
In this regard, it has a lot in common with another of 2017's movie highlight, "Call Me by Your Name". Just replace the gay guys with straight girl and sunny 1980's Italy with economically shaky 2002's USA Sacramento.
I am proud to say that I've managed to see most of the key movies of this Oscar season by now, and the Oscar gala is still more than a week away. This fact has no real value at all, of course... but it's still nice.
"Lady Bird" is nominated for 5 Oscars: best picture, actress (Saoirse Ronan), supporting actress (Laurie Metcalf), director and original screenplay (both by Greta Gerwig).
Some claim that women in film industry should get more attention and praise. I don't give any filmmaker special attention just because s/he happens to be of fairer sex (or black, or Estonian, or member of LGBT community, or whatever). The work has to speak for itself.
"Lady Bird" is a great example of how "minority group" really deserves the awards and positive word-of-mouth - because it's jsut good enough. As opposed to grabbing attention for political reasons - here's looking at you, "Mudbound", nominated for 4 Oscars.
P.S. "Lady Bird" has already won Golden Globe awards for best actress (Ronan) and movie. It has 83 wins and 190 nominations altogether.
15 of 17 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this