- I didn’t find it to be the devastating formal work Paterson is and the visuals don’t rise to a level of Blade Runner: 2049 or Dunkirk but I keep thinking that this film is just about as good as a film can be without checking those boxes (telling that Mr. Rex Reed gives it a glowing 4 stars)
- Gerwig has yet to develop (or perhaps more correctly been given a change yet with only 1 film) her voice or rhythms as a director in a way that Baumbach and Linklater have been able to do (largely because of the existence of a body of work) but those are two names and comparisons that come to mind
- Elite-level writing and acting- these characters are authentic and lived in—it lacks Woody’s formal and stylistic flourishes but as an acting/wring combination it’s comparable with Hannah and Her Sisters (which is a top 100 film and won two acting Oscars and a writing one as well).
- The narrative structure here and the perfectness of it washes over you at the end of the film. We have a character who went from hating home and longing for NYC to missing home (the montage of Sacramento, family, and her visit to the church)
- Incredible detail in each written line and visual detail (length of Ronan’s skirt changes when she changes friends)
- In a genre (coming of age drama) where there is a quality entry in the archives literally every year (2016 alone had everybody wants some! and indignation… 2015 had mistress America, me and ear and the dying girl and the diary of a teenage girl) this never felt cliché or unimportant. I was welling up with tears in nearly every scene either from laughter or from some poignant moment
- I was frankly skeptical of the 94 on metacritic prior to seeing the film but after seeing it is easy to see how the film received so many 100’s. It’s perfect and will only be bettered by films with a bolder artistic stroke— honestly I really didn’t want Gerwig directing films- she’s such a good performer but again this isn’t some George Clooney-directed flop and waste of talent—it’s truly special and is closer to Baumbach’s work or Linklater who are obviously true auteurs. Mike Mills is another one that comes to mind and I love beginners and 20th century women
- It’s harder to take notes in theater then home so I look forward to a second viewing—but I was blown away by the amount of great moments and scenes were packed into 93 minutes—highlights include the shot of Laurie Metcalf as she drops off Lady Bird at the airport. I think the scene of Lucas Hedges character breaking down crying on Ronan’s shoulder is very well done as well
- The football coach directing a play scene was great as well
- Ronan and Metcalf would both be deserving of an Oscar in most years. I love that Ronan is 23 yet and many critics correctly point out that she could “finally” get her Oscar. She could easily have one already for both atonement in supporting in 2007 and 2015 with Brooklyn
viewing 2.0 here April 2018–
- a complex story of two women– the relationships with the Hedges character, Ronan’s best friend, and others are great but this relationship is the center of the film- a story of two women– it’s a tennis match between the two.
- the dialogue and situational drama/comedy is so true but there’s also a storybook quality to the film– it’s fiction and that’s clearly set up in the farcical beginning car gag
- lovingly shot montages of Sacramento sets up the phone message finale
- Tracy Letts as the father is great- he carries real weight (depression, love) with him
- 2002/2003 soundtrack attempts to capture time/place is great
- Ronan’s “lady bird” is a real character- flawed, selfish, prone to mistakes
- In the second viewing I noticed character touches with the mom- Metcalf’s character- she’s nice to a co-worker at hospital/clinic (gets gift for baby) and she’s clearly a fixture and friends with woman at the thrift store. And she helps the great priest who has depression issues– Ronan also sticks up for her mother when others make comments about her– it’s real complexity
- It’s a very rich ensemble for 99 minutes
- recommend/HR border
How does a movie like Lady Bird compare to one like All About Eve? You say Lady Bird is as great as a film can be in writing and acting without great visual or formal work, but you could say the same for All About Eve even though that’s an MS. Same goes for another MS film Withnail and I. Is it a matter of these two screenplays just being so superior to Lady Bird, or is there something else?
Isn’t All about Eve considered a masterpiece? I remember Drake mentioned it on the Bette Davis page
In more recent pages he has updated it as an MS, which I’m inclined to agree with myself.
I only ask because I myself am trying to sort out my own criteria. I believe it comes down to All About Eve having an all-time great screenplay compared to Lady Bird’s merely “very good” screenplay (still an impressive accomplishment though). When it comes to a movie like Withnail and I though I’m a little more stumped. That too has an excellent screenplay and performances, but not on the level of All About Eve. Does it have something else that has that Lady Bird doesn’t? Maybe some sort of formal connective tissue?
@Declan- I think this is a good discussion. I don’t mean to be cryptic but when I’m talking about Lady Bird I said “just about as good as a film can be” — I’m trying to give the film a compliment, but there’s wiggle room there in the “just about”, right? Plenty of films- from Social Network to There Will Be Blood to All About Eve have superior writing and acting. I haven’t seen Withnail in awhile so I’ll wait to speak on that- but if anything this makes me think whether All About Eve is indeed a Must-See– maybe I’m still paying it too much reverence.
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