Greta Gerwig’s directorial debut, Lady Bird, brings a coming of age film that’s relevant to many teens going through the same struggles today. Saoirse Ronan plays a Sacramento teen who wants to move out of her town and live in a state that has more culture than California. Christine Mcpherson dons the nickname, “Lady Bird,” because she likes it more than her traditional name. Being a high school senior, she’s an idealist and a bit of a hypocrite, self centered but also generous.
Gerwig, herself a Sacramento native in the early 2000s, knows the characters she’s made and their worlds very well. Making it set post-9/11 gives a sense of nostalgia, showing how tense and divided the country was with terrorism at the time. Also, by showing these events through the eyes of a teenager, it provides a perspective that is often overlooked when these world events are put to film. Although the movie is semi-autobiographical, a lot of things in the film didn’t happen in Gerwig’s own life.
Lady Bird says she’s from the wrong side of the tracks, not being from the rich part of town where a lot of her classmates reside. Like a lot of young people, they relate to Lady Bird’s struggles with feeling insecure about her family’s income while living in a wealthy town. Her family is part of the wide variety of people in the country who are “just getting by”.This division of people isn’t often shown on screen in such a direct manner.
Despite these fresh twists, this is still a teen drama/comedy and still has the high school cliches of worrying about who you’ll take to prom, falling in love, changing as a person, and losing or making new friends. Many coming of age films are in the perspective of boys, but Lady Bird uses a feminine point of view that makes the story refreshing to watch.
Since the film has been released it still remains at a one hundred percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes and has become the most reviewed movie on the site with over one hundred seventy consecutive positive reviews from film critics. This kind of film should remind people to support female directors and more independent films in the future