Set over one summer, the film follows precocious 6-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 Disney World.
Thirty years after they served together in Vietnam, a former Navy Corpsman Larry "Doc" Shepherd re-unites with his old buddies, former Marines Sal Nealon and Reverend Richard Mueller, to bury his son, a young Marine killed in the Iraq War.
An other-worldly fairy tale, set against the backdrop of Cold War era America circa 1962. In the hidden high-security government laboratory where she works, lonely Elisa (Sally Hawkins) is trapped in a life of isolation. Elisa's life is changed forever when she and co-worker Zelda (Octavia Spencer) discover a secret classified experiment.
Guillermo del Toro
A shot of a freeway sign in Sacramento showed an exit number. The movie takes place in 2002, which was the year California started numbering its freeway exits, but they started out on rural exits and made their way to urban areas a few years later, so no exit in a city the size of Sacramento would be numbered at this point. See more »
"Lady Bird" (2017 release; 93 min.) brings the story of Christine McPherson, a/k/a Lady Bird, "my given name since I gave to name to myself". As the movie opens, Lady Bird and her mom are driving back to Sacramento as they are listening to an audio tape of Grapes of Wrath. Lady Bird laments "I wish I could live through something" and then lets herself fall out of the car, breaking her wrist along the way. Now in a cast, we get to know Lady Bird's daily life as she enters her senior year in high school at the all-girls Immaculate Heart of Maria. Lady Bird also has to deal with her overbearing mom. It all makes her want to go to college on the East Coast... At this point we are 10 min. into the movie but to tell you more of the plot would spoil your viewing experience, you'll just have to see for yourself how it all plays out.
Couple of comments: this is the directing debut of noted actress and writer Greta Gerwig (Frances Ha, Mistress American, Maggie's Plan, and most recently sensational in 20th Century Women). Here Gerwig writes about something very familiar to her, as she grew up in Sacramento (but she refuses to call the film auto-biographical): the struggles of a teenager on the cusp of the liberating (?) years of going to college and setting out a life's journey more within her control. Even though the movie is just an hour and a half, it is jam-packed with non-stop plot developments, but the over-arching theme is clear. While billed as a comedy-drama, the movie is more drama than comedy, indeed the movie is bitter-sweet, but in the end more sweet than bitter. Gerwig provides outstanding direction to her two lead performers, Irish actress Saoirse Ronan (as Lady Bird) and Lauren Metcalf (as her tough-love mother). I can't help but feel that the movie is also Gerwig's love letter to her home town of Sacramento (a place I've never visited myself), making it look very warm and inviting. Bottom line: "Lady Bird" is a wonderful 'little' movie, and in that sense the complete opposite (and perfect counter- programming) for yet the latest salvo of superhero action movies from DC Comics ("Justice League") and Marvel Comics ("Thor Ragnarok"). To each their own, but I'll take "Lady Bird" any day.
"Lady Bird" received immediate critical acclaim upon its premiere at the Telluride Film Festival earlier this Fall, and surely will be receiving a number of Oscar nominations early next year. The movie went wide this past weekend. The Tuesday evening screening where I saw this at was attended poorly (exactly 4 people, including myself), but positive word of mouth will hopefully boost better attendance in the days and weeks to come. If you are in the mood for a character study that will feel very familiar to many of us, you cannot go wrong with this, be it in the theater, on VOD or eventually on DVD/Blu-ray. "Lady Bird" is HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!
4 of 4 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?