Lady Bird simply sings. It is a triumph—an era-defining coming of age story in the same vein as The Graduate, The Breakfast Club, and The Garden State—that is sure to have a similar impact on those who grew up in the early 2000s. While being wholly novel and refreshing in its approach, Greta Gerwig’s coming-of-age debut seems so well-known, so personal, and so honest that it has reached the status of an instant classic overnight and won the hearts of audiences everywhere.
Lady Bird follows the bold Christine “Lady Bird” McPherson, a bright young woman who is determined to break free of the confines of suburban Sacramento and plunge into the metropolitan by going to college out East “where writers live in the woods.” She feels restricted by her hometown and her Catholic high school she jokingly dubs “Sacred Fart.” Yet, as she comes to comes to terms with her environment, Lady Bird explores the complex relationship she has with her family and hometown with a realism and vulnerability rarely seen on film.
Like most young adults who think they know it all, Lady Bird knows what she wants out of life, but still has a lot of life to learn. As she navigates through her senior year, she deals with first loves, losses, and her oh-so-complicated relationship with her mother. Lady Bird moves at the pace of life. All at once it seems as if nothing is happening, yet things are whirling by—each moment is entertaining and captivating and seems to blur into the next.
What makes Lady Bird so special is how it treats its characters. Even the smallest of characters have a rich story to offer. They all add depth, personality, and purpose to the story. Life is examined so eloquently and tenderly in this film that Lady Bird hits nearly every emotion one can feel. Lady Bird will make you laugh, cry, wax nostalgic, and pine for home. It’s an incredibly original and realistic film that poignantly paints what being 17 feels like.
Kayla Stetzel graduated in 2017 with a degree in Marketing Management.