- Gist: Growing-up story covers a girl’s senior year of high school.
- Story: By nature, growing-up story has to feel widely relatable while somehow avoiding cliches. I think the key was…
- Editing: Never over-explains. (Why “Lady Bird”? Because teen weird; doesn’t matter. Why the JV football coach?? If you ask, you don’t know about schools. And so on.)
- Number of Stubborn, Interfering, Difficult, Protective, Loving, Clumsy, Doing-her-Best moms: The most anyone ever gets, the number you have if you are very lucky.
- Daughters who are exactly like their moms: Heh. You decide.
- Saoirse Ronan: Fully committed to the awkward, fiery adolescent, and since everyone on screen treats her like a homely any-girl, I could buy it, sort of.
- Irish Catholics: Masses! Religion rounds the characters, makes them more real, hence more relatable, but still not cliched.
- Imperfect teens: All of them.
- Imperfect adults: All of them.
- Positive teacher figures: All of them. Even the JV coach!
- Script: Each line supports its scene, each scene supports the theme. Can’t beat that.
- Audience: Meant for post-teens, but teens will find things to love and laugh at. Has the minimum R-rateable language and a quick magazine image (On her 18th birthday).
Conclusion: May be a little over-hyped, but it’s enjoyable and satisfying.
FREE AD: Today ends the best month of movies in my memory, and by coincidence Lori and I bought each other Moviepass for Christmas. $10/a month for all the movies you can see. Not many months are this good, but I paid about $1 per flick! moviepass.com