lady bird (2017)

Greta Gerwig's Lady Bird has a gorgeously smeary kind of texture in both its visual components and narrative framework, in its ability to play like an old snapshot happening live in front of us and its acquiescence to fall in step and become a card-carrying genre member. Gerwig's "dear diary" approach to her own life story (and don't try to tell me it isn't) means the film is genuine, heartfelt and honest in its account of the rites of passage from high school into college, but regardless of how true to life this may be to her own experience, it is well-tread cinematic ground. Above all, Lady Bird is a cinema of the pleasant; a good-enough representation of a time in life it is attempting to distill, yet never piercing the surface, never finding its own lifeblood. Lady Bird comes across as wanting to emote, yet it doesn't have the faculties to do so. It wants to express itself deeply, yet feels truncated. There is a lot to appreciate in its intentions, yet the film overall is bland and flavorless.