Melanie’s review published on Letterboxd:
I saw this film in December. It’s taken me so long to pluck up the courage and write this review. So, here we go.
Seeing Lady Bird felt as though I had been yanked from my skin and put on display. Or the world had just seen me naked and there’s no going back now. I can go on for a lifetime when it comes to how much this movie resonated with me, but I’m sure by now this is an inevitable feeling once you’ve seen Lady Bird. Go through any review and it will say just that. So for now, I’ll save that until the end.
This film was everything I could have ever wanted out of a coming of age story. Here’s the thing, there are plenty of amazing films that capture the familiarity of growing up and being a teenager and bursting through your shell and finding who you are. But, for me, every single one of them had an ending that felt prominently unattainable to me. They all found themselves through it all, obtained a life they all strived for and desired with every piece of them and found satisfaction in that. Not that that’s bad, but it never sat right with me. It wasn’t me, this was not my life, I’m still lost in translation and that made me feel terrible. But Lady Bird didn’t have that. Lady Bird does not have her happily ever after, she is not forever satisfied by what she’s chosen to do and pursue for now, her choices are never set for life and the world is not her sudden oyster. Lady Bird is still lost, just as lost as me and I’ve never felt better after that.
This movie is a love letter to growing, to being, to your mother, and to where you began. It’s that feeling of having a lump in your throat and you’re fighting it, it’s that moment of pure bliss when you hear a song you used to love but forgot about, it’s that crushing anger and disappointment of a growing youth and wanting to believe that you’re totally unique but find that the familiarity of what you’re trying to dispose of is what’s kept you together for as long as you can remember. Where are we without that familiar feeling? What does this idea of wanting something bigger mean to everyone around you? Do we want this or have we created an idea that’s better than it is?
I grew up lower class, I grew up with arguing parents and a never ending questioning of “where are we to go from here?”. My mother is me and that’s not good for us, I am my mother and that’s never been better for us. Lady Bird is perfect. Even that feels like an understatement to say, but this movie takes my words and throws them out the window. I’m left speechless at every turn.
I know this all sounds sad but I want you to know that it’s not. Lady Bird has left me the happiest and freest. Lady Bird reminds me of how I want everything out of life and it’s okay to not always have the means to have it. I am Christine, I think we all are in someway.