Smells like teen spirit: Lady Bird review by Rashid Irani
This evocative portrait of adolescence — in all its angst, aspiration and liberating joy — is not to be missed.movie reviews Updated: Mar 02, 2018 16:37 IST
- Direction: Greta Gerwig
- Actors: Saorise Ronan, Laurie Metcalf
- Rating: 5 / 5
Lady Bird, the solo directorial debut of actress-scriptwriter Greta Gerwig, is one of the most affecting coming-of-age movies in recent memory.
The film navigates the angst, aspirations and liberating joy of youth expertly and evocatively, as it documents the life of a 17-year-old student (Irish actress Saorise Ronan, incandescent).
The director draws on her own experiences growing up in ‘the Midwest of California’ to paint a stirringly authentic portrait of a fierce teen hemmed in but undeterred by poor grades, financial constraints and a fraught relationship with her long-suffering mother (an Oscar-worthy Laurie Metcalf).
Set primarily in Sacramento circa 2002, the self-styled titular heroine is determined to escape her stifling life with her family by enrolling at a liberal arts college in New York.
Gerwig elicits impeccable performances from the supporting cast, including Beanie Feldstein as Lady Bird’s favourite classmate and Lucas Hedges as her first boyfriend. The whip-smart script captures the minutiae of high school years with remarkable precision too.
From the terrific opening car ride scene in which the mother and daughter bicker constantly to the epiphanic finale, every moment of this slice-of-life reminiscence rings true.
Unlike scores of dumbed-down teenage flicks, the denouement achieves a quiet, resonant power. Don’t miss this movie.