The 2017 film titled Lady Bird was met with universal praise for its depiction of what it means to be an emerging adult in the modern world. Although set in 2003, the film comments accurately on the everyday struggles that teens go through in their late high school career.
The film follows a high school senior, Christine “Lady Bird’ McPherson (Saoirse Ronan), and the various highs and lows that arise as she searches to find her identity while at the same time applying for colleges on the east coast. While not a perfect portrayal, it is clear that Lady Bird does an above average job at accurately portraying what it means to be an adolescent struggling with their identity.
As stated above, the film follows the senior year of Christine McPherson, who commonly goes by Lady Bird. Lady Bird goes to a strict Catholic school nestled in the prestigious suburbs of Sacramento. This school seems to serve as the exact antithesis of Lady Bird’s home life; while the Catholic school is neat and tidy, her home life is anything but.
Lady Bird lives in a one-story house with her parents, brother and his girlfriend in the poorer suburban part of Sacramento, or in her own words, the “other side of the tracks.” Lady Bird is constantly at odds with her mother, played by Laurie Metcalf, and, as a result, seems to struggle with what it means to be a woman in this world.
She longs to get away and go to college in a “city with culture” on the east coast. All the while, Lady Bird has the usual high school experiences that you would expect to be portrayed in a coming-of-age film. She has her first boyfriend and subsequent heartbreak, a shaky rebound with an apathetic bassist named Kyle (Timothée Chalamet) and struggles to maintain close friendships throughout the film. This is all a part of Lady Bird’s search for an identity.
I very much enjoyed watching this film, as I think it does a very good job portraying what it really means to be an adolescent growing up in the modern world. Aside from this, the acting performances were really quite outstanding. Ronan and Metcalf in particular stand out above all the rest as they clearly steal the show. The dynamic that they have in this dysfunctional mother-daughter relationship is truly engaging from the film’s first scene.
Lady Bird gets 4.5 stars out of 5.