Lady Bird ★★★★½

"...It's normal not to touch a penis."

Greta does this nice little push and pull where the dramatics are never heavy handed and the comedy is neither slapstick nor forced. it's the same balancing act that can be found within Frances Ha, and here in Lady Bird, it's used to great effect. this is a film where words and statements actually matter, where family dysfunction isn't just a blanket term, and where moments of pure genuine joy are counteracted by moments of harsh reality.

nothing feels forced in this, and the tiny details to time period give us a snapshot more than a full on re-creation (a trait to any classic period piece, no different than TSN, Badlands, and even recently with Super Dark Times). Sam Levy sets out to make every shot feel like a memory (a factoid I read about in an interview he did), and there are scenes that anyone who has ever gone to a Catholic High School will relate to. authentic is the word.

forgiveness is a hard earned goal, one that compliments the religious undertones just on the edges of this film, but it's not forgiveness for any form of wrong doing. it's a forgiveness of just sometimes wanting more than what you're given, and forgiveness for sometimes inadvertently holding people back. but we all do our best or what we think is best for everyone. and that's the best we can really do.

shout out to future academy award winning actress in a supporting role Laurie Metcalf (though it'd be lit if Mary J. got it for Mudbound, but I digress)