Review By Daniel Occelli (Mexico City)
“We could never have loved the earth so well if we had had no childhood in it…”
Little Women is directed by Greta Gerwig, the director of last year’s Lady Bird, and from the moment it was announced this seemed like the right way to go for her and it was…
The film stars Soairse Ronan, Florence Pugh, Emma Watson and Eliza Scanlen as well as Laura Dern, Timothee Chalamet, Meryl Streep and Tracy Letts as the March family and the people around it. And it tells the story of the acclaimed classic novel of the same name.
I felt so many things throughout the runtime of Little Women it really was insane, I was happy, sad, worried and angry, I smiled like an idiot and cried like a fool and I fell in love with every character on screen, from Jo to Mr. Laurence, all of them stole my heart at least once, what a delightful masterpiece.
At first the film was distracting to me, because when I watched Harry Potter as a kid I fell in love with Emma Watson, when I watched Brooklyn three years ago I fell madly in love with Soairse Ronan, and all throughout this year I’ve had a huge celebrity crush on Florence Pugh, (let’s face it, Timothee Chalamet is breathtaking as well). Seeing all of them on screen together was a little distracting, I’m not going to lie, but after a little while I no longer saw them, I saw their characters. The amazing performances delivered by everyone on screen made me forget the actors and fall in love with them all over again as the genuine, heartfelt, amazing characters they were portraying. Their stories intertwined perfectly with one another, the narrative was perfectly accompanied by a smooth editing, and maybe not too subtle, but perfectly managed changes in the lighting making the past warmer and the present colder, referencing the change this characters have gone through.
The highlight of this movie is by far its script, it handles every character with love. I am not familiar with the source material, but I was really surprised on how Greta Gerwig never gets stuck on label. It is very easy to separate the March family, “the older, traditional sister”, “the independent one”, “the annoying one”, and “the quite one”, but the script gives every character so much depth. Meg is so much more than a traditional turn of the century women. Jo is more sensitive than your classic “go getter”. Amy, maybe my favorite character in the film (after Mr. Laurence), felt so real and honest. She was annoying as a child, but throughout the film you understand her actions, and you sympathize so much with her. And Beth was not only the one that glued the family together, she had ambitions and passions of her own. This only speaks to the talent Greta Gerwig has as a writer, I can’t wait to see more of her.
I fell in love with this family so much that in their happiest moments I shed a tear and in their saddest moments I cried like a kid.
Now that I’ve poured my heart out for this review, let’s talk about the movie as a movie. The editing, like I said, was smooth, the cinematography was a little too on the nose with the narrative changes, but it worked perfectly as a metaphor, and there is one shot on the beach that took my breath away. The music is beautiful, and the overall design of the film was really immersive, especially during the scenes in France.
I will give Little Women 9.5 out of 10, another movie that managed to squeeze into A+ territory. I hope you can check it out and enjoy it as much as I did.