Lady Bird – Why Would You Do This To Us?

[Lady Bird has been nominated in 5 categories at the Academy Awards 2018: Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actress, Best Supporting Actress, and Best Original Screenplay.]

The most important part of Lady Bird is the name Saoirse Ronan. How do you pronounce it? Why is it so complicated? What does it mean? But Wikipedia tells me the pronunciation is quite simple, though the explanation behind the complication is still a little obscure to me. Apparently, ‘Saoirse’ is pronounced ‘s-ur-sh-a’.

Okay, so now that’s out of the way, coming to Lady Bird. What do I say about this movie except ask the makers why they would do this to us? There are many who say that there is not much of a story in the film; that it could have been better. They say it just tells us everyday events of a Sacramento girl.

But I beg to differ. And very passionately at that.

Lady Bird is a masterpiece in an understated, humorous kind of way. In the caption of this review, I asked the makers of the film, “Why would you do this to us?” And I still maintain that. Because it should be illegal for a movie to make people laugh and cry alternately, sometimes even at once. The last movie to make me do this was Wonder.

Lady Bird is the story of loudmouth Christine “Lady Bird” McPherson (Saoirse Ronan), a high school senior who must navigate her dreams and high school while acknowledging and handling the turbulence in her relationship with her mother, Marion McPherson (Laurie Metcalf). Who she meets, who she maintains her relationships with, and how she does all of this forms the crux of the story.

A coming-of-age drama, Lady Bird is American actress and writer, Greta Gerwig’s directorial debut. And what a debut it is! Lady Bird knows what it is doing, bringing out everyday occurrences and giving them a twist that you would identify with anyway. You know when things are going to go wrong, and when everything will be set right.

Yet, I wouldn’t call the movie predictable. The biggest reason is that in today’s world, this word is mostly used for movies that are boring. But Lady Bird is anything but boring. It is beautiful, it is engaging, it is loving, and it is lovely. It will make you question your thoughts, and sometimes makes you want to shake Christine until her teeth rattle. It will help you come to the decision of what in life you believe.

The first thought that crossed my mind when we finished watching the movie was, “How can a movie make me laugh at its understated humor and make me cry at its understated heartbreaking sorrow at the same time?” I asked my husband this and he had almost the same answer. “I don’t know but I loved it.”

The movie is an ode to Sacramento. There is so much conflict within Christine about her hometown that Saoirse Ronan brings wonderfully to screen. She doesn’t want to be “trapped” in Sacramento. Instead, she wants to fly. Her dreams live up to the name she bestowed on herself. It only remains to be seen if she will get out of Sacramento and build a life greater than the one at home.

Finally, on the note we started on: Saoirse Ronan. This 23-year-old makes me want to go into a corner and cry. She is so talented, it makes me feel ashamed. But more than anything, it inspires me to no end. And to think that I’ve only known of her as I know her now for a couple of days. Her tendency to acquire nominations left, right, and center is something that I think she should celebrate on a grander scale from time to time.

On the whole, if you like coming-of-age dramas, don’t listen to anyone else. Just go watch Lady Bird. And I promise you, you won’t regret it!

Rating: 5/5 stars

Picture Courtesy: The New York Times!

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