If there’s one word to describe ‘Lady Bird’ it would probably be simple. Simple as in it’s not too much and it keeps things light. For example, the storyline is familiar in some ways it simple at the same time. The types of characters may have distinct personas, but it’s simple for the audiences sake. There might be dialogue or scenes that are cliché, but it’s simple for the movie.
Based on an original script and directed by Greta Gerwig, ‘Lady Bird’ tells the story of Christine “Lady Bird” McPherson (Saoirse Ronan, Academy take notes), a teenager from Sacramento attending a Catholic school and having a complicated relationship with her mother. Christine gives herself the name Lady Bird to make her own personality. As we see Lady Bird go into situations like coming across different cute boys and switching best friends, Lady Bird attempts to fix her relationship with her mother and get into a college on the east coast.
While watching ‘Lady Bird,’ it came to me that Saoirse Ronan is a very talented actress. Her performance in the movie is spot-on and definitely worth getting award nominations or even better- a win. She fits the ideal look of a troubled teenage girl who is trying to figure out her place in the world. Laurie Metcalf, who plays Lady Bird’s mother, is definitely worth praising for her performance. Ronan and Metcalf’s mother-daughter chemistry is sad and we feel what they’re feeling in terms of them hoping to fix their relationship. Their relationship is so complicated that Lady Bird jumps out of a car in the opening scene to avoid hearing her mother blast her for her work ethic.
Now while Lady Bird and her mother were well developed, but some characters I felt like were a little underdeveloped. Characters like Lady Bird’s love interests Danny and Kyle (Lucas Hedges and Timothée Chalament, respectively) and enemy-turned-friend Jenna are likable characters but I feel like were underdeveloped. If I saw more from Danny and Kyle being involved Lady Bird’s love life and more of Jenna being friends Lady Bird’s friend, then I’d think those characters were more developed. Thinking about it now, I think Danny, Kyle, and Jenna would’ve been more developed if it weren’t for the movie’s runtime because the movie rushed through some scenes that I wished lasted a little longer.
When it comes to the script, Greta Gerwig definitely made it aching and beautifully written. The script- and story itself- is almost a semi-autobiography of Gerwig’s life growing up in Sacramento. However, Gerwig has stated that the movie is not a full retelling of her life. Instead, it’s a core of truth of what she remembers of her adolescence. The script itself has a humorous vibe of a coming-of-age dramedy from the 1980s (e.g. The Breakfast Club, Sixteen Candles).
At one point, the script does a 180 and completely goes emotional towards the audience. This happens when Lady Bird is dropped off the airport to go to college, her mother drives off, turns around, and by the time she gets back Lady Bird is gone. Not one word was spoken during the whole scene and I could hear audience members tearing up as the scene was unfolding. It’s heartbreaking because Lady Bird’s mother left without saying goodbye and telling her daughter that she loves her. So to conclude this review, go see ‘Lady Bird’ because it’s very likely to be a hot ticket this award season.