A fiercely independent teenager tries to make her own way in the world while wanting to get out of her hometown of Sacramento, California & to get away from her complicated mother & recently-unemployed father.
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Gerwig makes a mature and assured move into the director's chair with this impressive debut feature. Ronan and Metcalf are both impressive here in a story about a young woman whose desires put her at odds with family and friends. But this is no mere 'coming of age' tale as it offers stronger reflection, recognition and maturity. Scripting is aces.
This is an extraordinary directorial debut from the amazing Greta Gerwig. Saorise Ronan gives an incredible performance in what feels like Gerwig's cinematic alter ego that plays like Wes Anderson meets Woody Allen. Gerwig packs this film with incredible deadpan humor and heartfelt emotions that make this film really special. A truly beautiful and tough coming of age story.
Despite the waves of critics frothing at the mouth, Lady Bird offers nothing unique or special. It is a quirky, feel-good, coming of age film - aesthetically, a Tumblr-style mashup of Wes Anderson, Napoleon Dynamite, and some Ghost World. It was genuinely funny at times, but ultimately a predictable, paint-by-numbers affair that happens to have a little more indie grit than its average Hollywood film counterpart.
A ceaselessly witty delight, moving through each rite of passage with the chipper speed of an adult who can look back fondly, even on conflict and humiliation, and buoyed by Saoirse Ronan as the spunky, mouthy heroine that Juno couldn't be in her most ostentatious dreams. It sticks too close to convention, but it's a bittersweet farewell to her, mine, your, and everyone's hometown, whether you liked it or not.
I generally abhor coming-of-age films. They rely too heavily on nostalgia, resolve arcs hastily and messily, devolve into cliches, and depict often illogical teenage behavior we've (hopefully) all outgrown as reasonable. These pitfalls are all the more frustrating here: "Lady Bird" has a brilliant kinetic energy and wonderful characters. A good film that I wanted to love, but it can't sustain that initial vigor.
"Lady Bird" evidently comes from a place of empathy on behalf of its all-star actress-turned-director Greta Gerwig, and that's one of many reasons it's so authentic. Moreover, its wryly funny tone is like someone who doesn't take life too seriously, which is why the emotional moments hit like a sucker-punch. Wish it wasn't so focused on boyfriends, though, as that undercut the moments between Lady Bird and her mom.
In the semi-autobiographical film Gerwig goes against the genre’s tropes by having a central character focused on being a woman, instead of being defined by “chasing a boy,” as female coming-of-age stories often dictate. They are still part of the narrative, as they are an integral part to any teenager’s life, but it’s the mother-daughter relationship that ultimately emerges as Lady Bird’s defining love story.