“Lady Bird” Brings Relationships Full Circle

Almost two years ago I was listening to Greta Gerwig talk about her new project loosely based on her senior year in high school set in Sacramento.  Her energy about the project was infectious and my interest level was high.

Fast forward to 2017 and Greta’s project is finished, Lady Bird is finally here.

Saoirse Ronan and Greta Gerwig on the set of LADY BIRD.

Saoirse Ronan and Greta Gerwig on the set of LADY BIRD. Photo by Merie Wallace, courtesy of A24

Lady Bird exceeded all my expectations, it’s more than I could have ever hoped for. I had an idea of what the movie was about but I did not expect to feel so many emotions. No matter where you grew up or the type of high school you attended, Lady Bird is for everyone.

Lady Bird Brings Relationships Full Circle

At its core, Lady Bird is about a mother-daughter relationship yet Greta Gerwig skillfully explores a variety of relationships throughout the movie and how they shape Christine ‘Lady Bird’ McPherson. All of these relationships come full circle in this beautiful story of a young woman trying to find her place in this world.

The relationship with best friend Julie (Beanie Feldstein) certainly is one that teenage girls can easily relate to. Our best friend is always someone we can count on, no matter what. However, when you start to grow apart and want to explore new thing, how does that relationship evolve? In Lady Bird we see forgiveness between best friends and know that the bonds created between women are strong. The relationships that I created in high school are still part of my life today.

Beanie Feldstein and Saoirse Ronan

Julie (Beanie Feldstein) and Lady Bird (Saoirse Ronan) have a heart-to-hear. Photo by Merie Wallace, courtesy of A24

Lady Bird’s father, Larry (Tracy Letts), is the go-between of Lady Bird and her mother, he’s the peace maker. The constant weaving of her father throughout the movie allows him to understand what is happening between Lady Bird and her mother clearer than anyone else. He is able to set in motion certain actions between mother and daughter at just the right time.

Lady Bird - Tracy Letts and Laurie Metcalf

Larry (Tracy Letts) and Marion (Laurie Metcalf) attend Lady Bird’s play. Photo by Merie Wallace, courtesy of A24

The boyfriend relationship is simple, yet complex at the same time. Isn’t that how romantic relationships usually develop? We think we know what we are doing but then as the relationship grows it becomes more and more complex.

Lady Bird (Saoirse Ronan) and Danny (Lucas Hedges)

Lady Bird (Saoirse Ronan) and Danny (Lucas Hedges) Photo by Merie Wallace, courtesy of A24

In both of her relationships with Danny (Lucas Hedges) and Kyle (Timothée Chalamet) Lady Bird learns  important lessons about herself. In the end; she listens to her heart and makes decisions that are true to herself.

Lady Bird - Timothée Chalamet and Saoirse Ronan

Danny (Timothée Chalamet) and Lady Bird (Saoirse Ronan) share a moment. Photo by Merie Wallace, courtesy of A24

Lady Bird’s high school environment is also present throughout the movie. At first, you may think that these experiences at her all-girl Catholic high school are just routine and don’t mean much. But in the end; it’s this relationship with her faith that helps anchor her when she needs it the most.

There were so many moments in Lady Bird that were similar to my experiences, but this  really hit close to my heart. Once I left Sacramento and tried to make it on my own I felt lost and had no where to turn. Except for one place.

My faith and the routine connected to it.

Even today it helps keep me anchored when I need it the most, and it’s always there for me.

Lady Bird (Saoirse Ronan)

Lady Bird (Saoirse Ronan) trying to find herself. Photo by Merie Wallace, courtesy of A24

The most important relationship in this movie is between Lady Bird and her mother (Laurie Metcalf). Without this deeply layered relationship we only have a movie about a high school senior living in Sacramento.

The complexity of a mother-daughter relationship is what gives Lady Bird it’s appeal.

During a visit to Thrift Town for a prom dress, both Lady Bird and her mother are dealing with a multitude of emotions;  angst, sadness, irritation, and love. Saoirse Ronan and Laurie Metcalf make their way through this complex scene beautifully. Even in still image form, their body language tells so much about what their characters are feeling.

Lady Bird (Saoirse Ronan) and Marion (Laurie Metcalf) visit Thrift Town

Lady Bird (Saoirse Ronan) and Marion (Laurie Metcalf) visit Thrift Town for a prom dress. Photo by Merie Wallace, courtesy of A24

Lady Bird is a Story for Everyone

What stuck me the most in the movie is how I was like Lady Bird in high school, always challenging my mother and wanting to leave my hometown. Now things have changed, I am the mother and I feel the challenges coming my way from my daughters. I am  the mom who is trying to do it all, pinch pennies and wanting my daughters to be the best versions of themselves. Never have I seen a movie where I felt connected with two of the main characters on such a personal level.

No mater what town you grew up in you are still able to relate to wanting to leave; yet at the same time still appreciating the impact your city and your relationships in your past have impact on your life today.

Like many, once the movie ended I felt the urge to call my mom.

Sacramento in a Supporting Role

It’s fall in Sacramento, my favorite time of the year. There is finally a chill in the air; boots and scarves start to become part of our wardrobe. The Fabulous 40’s in East Sacramento is one of the best places in the city to see Christmas lights and then eat Vic’s Ice Cream. For the record, I have never found a chocolate ice cream better than Vic’s, trust me – I’ve tried.

Lady Bird - Saoirse Ronan and Beanie Feldstein

Saoirse Ronan and Beanie Feldstein walk home from school. Photo by Merie Wallace, courtesy of A24

Lady Bird is set in Sacramento and for those of us lucky enough to live here, we will know all of the locations mentioned and the many landmarks shown in the film. For those not from Sacramento you can now have an appreciation for East Sacramento, a place that hasn’t changed much in decades.

Greta has included so many iconic Sacramento places in Lady Bird that I actually cried when I saw my city portrayed so lovely on the screen. The J street bridge and the fork in the road into River Park is a sight I see everyday. Like Lady Bird, I remember getting my license and driving around Sacramento for the first time, alone. It was just as magical as portrayed in the movie.

Lady Bird (Saoirse Ronan) turns 18.

Lady Bird (Saoirse Ronan) turns 18. Photo by Merie Wallace, courtesy of A24

Much like Lady Bird I longed to leave my hometown. After High School I moved to San Francisco and six years later I returned home because every time I would come to visit I found myself visiting all of my favorite places. It was clear that Sacramento is where I left my heart.

This beautiful community is where I am raising my family. My daughters attend the same elementary school I attended and will eventually attend St. Francis High School as I did and now where I work.

About Lady Bird

Written and Directed by Greta Gerwig and staring Saoirse Ronan, Laurie Metcalf, Tracy Letts, Lucas Hedges, Timothée Chalamet, Beanie Feldstein, Stephen McKinley Henderson, and Lois Smith.

In Lady Bird, Greta Gerwig reveals herself to be a bold new cinematic voice with her directorial debut, excavating both the humor and pathos in the turbulent bond between a mother and her teenage daughter.

Sam Levy and Greta Gerwig on the set of LADY BIRD

Sam Levy and Greta Gerwig on the set of LADY BIRD Photo by Merie Wallace, courtesy of A24

Christine “Lady Bird” McPherson (Saoirse Ronan) fights against but is exactly like her wildly loving, deeply opinionated and strong-willed mom (Laurie Metcalf), a nurse working tirelessly to keep her family afloat after Lady Bird’s father (Tracy Letts) loses his job.

Lady Bird - Saoirse Ronan and Laurie Metcalf

Saoirse Ronan and Laurie Metcalf Photo by Merie Wallace, courtesy of A24

Set in Sacramento, California in 2002, amidst a rapidly shifting American economic landscape, Lady Bird is an affecting look at the relationships that shape us, the beliefs that define us, and the unmatched beauty of a place called home. (source: A24Films.com)

Lady Bird - Saoirse Ronan and Lucas Hedges in the Fabulous 40's

Saoirse Ronan and Lucas Hedges Photo by Merie Wallace, courtesy of A24

Trailer

Lady Bird opened in select theaters on November 9, 2017. The film continues to roll out on screens this weekend and nationwide Thanksgiving weekend.

 

Lady Bird Movie Poster

Visit Lady Bird online at www.ladybirdmovie.com and follow on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

If you are in the Sacramento area be sure to see Lady Bird at the historic Tower Theater.

Lady Bird - Tower Theater in Sacramento

Lady Bird Tower Theater Sacramento - Lobby Poster

About Dawn

Dawn is a social influencer and has been writing about her nerdy side since 2004. She enjoys writing about Entertainment, Travel, Disney, Star Wars and life with two little girls. Her advice is to keep on dreaming, do what you love and life will lead you a path to your happiness. Dawn also writes for 5 Minutes for Mom.

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