Lady Bird is more than just your traditional comedy.
There’s something refreshing about a comedy that doesn’t scream “I’m a comedy!” at the top of its lungs. You don’t worry about having seen all the best lines in the multiple trailers that were released for the movie. And it ends up being a just a great film.
The Story Comes First
That’s because the focus is on the story, and the humour is slipped in gently as if it’s just another element of the journey. It also requires you, the audience, to pay attention as the humorous moments are also subtle and unsuspecting.
First time solo writer and director Greta Gerwig’s Lady Bird is just the latest example of that kind of film.
It’s loosely based on Gerwig’s experiences as a teenager and going to a Catholic high school. It has Saoirse Ronan in the titular role of Christine ‘Lady Bird’ McPherson who cannot wait to graduate and get out of Sacramento, California. But she has to get through one more year.
Ronan embodies the role of an American teenager flawlessly. And if this is your first time seeing her on screen (shame on you), then you’d never guess that she has a thick Irish accent in real life. Her portrayal of Lady Bird captures perfectly everything the average teenager goes through, regardless of gender.
Her character goes through all the motions that those formative years throw at everyone without a manual for guidance. She does crazy things for a crush, struggles with honesty, tries to fit into the popular crowd, makes horrible jokes, and more. She’s trying to figure out the world and it’s so relatable the audience may even be reminded of their younger days (whether they want to or not).
The Layers of Lady Bird
The film is labeled as a comedy, but it is so much more. Yes there are plenty of scenes that will make you laugh. But you’ll also cringe, hide in embarrassment for her, be disappointed in her, and more. She fights with her mum, deals with friends struggling with their own identities, and more. It’ll give you a great emotional workout. The story of Lady Bird is the main dessert, and the humour is an extra treat we get throughout.
This film is a great refresher from those big budget blockbuster comedies that regularly leave audiences unsatisfied. With Lady Bird it’s not about getting to the next joke, it’s about the journey the story takes you on. And it leaves you both satisfied and ready for more.