The year before we graduate high school can often be described as trans-formative. Especially when we know that the last thing we want to do is going to college near home.
The new movie, Lady Bird, written and directed by actor/director/writer Greta Gerwig, is about Christine “Lady Bird” McPherson (Saoirse Ronan). Set in Northern California in 2002, Lady Bird is starting her senior year of high school and wants nothing more than to go to college out-of-town. She does not get along with her equally strong-willed mother, Marion (Laurie Metcalf) and has a decent relationship with her father, Larry (Tracy Letts). As the year goes on, both Lady Bird will learn a few things about life and relationships.
I really enjoyed this movie. I enjoyed it because Lady Bird’s character arc and narrative feels universal. The struggle to find herself, the need to get away from home, the arguments with her parents, it all feels normal for a 17 year old girl.
I recommend it.
Lady Bird is presently in theaters.
A Doll’s House, by Henrik Ibsen, has one of the most famous endings in the world of theater. Nora Helmer walks away from her husband and her children, the door slamming behind her.
The new play, A Dolls House Part 2, is the sequel to the classic play. Nora (Laurie Metcalf) returns to her husband and her home 15 years after the original play ends. She is greeted by her children’s nanny, Anne Marie (Jayne Houdyshell), who is both pleased and displeased to see her. Nora receives similar responses from her husband, Torvald (Chris Cooper) and her now teenage daughter, Emmy (Condola Rashad), who was very young when her mother left.
At first glance, this play appears to be a straight drama. But it turns out to be a very funny comedy. It is also speaks, as it did with the original in 1879, about the difficulty of marriage and how women are still fighting for their own needs vs. the needs that the overall culture says we should strive for.
I absolutely recommend it.
A Dolls House is playing at The John Golden Theater at 252 W 45th Street in New York City. The show runs until January 8th of 2018.
The television of families of the 1980’s were pretty similar. Upper middle class families with two working parents with children who except for the normal childhood scrapes, were too good to be true.
Then Roseanne premiered in 1988.
The Conners were different. They were lower middle class, just struggling to get by and raise their kids the best way they knew how. Roseanne and Dan Conner (Roseanne Barr and John Goodman) were high school sweethearts who had their kids earlier in life. The children, Becky, Darlene and DJ (Alicia Goranson/Sarah Chalke, Sara Gilbert and Michael Fishman) were smart ass and constantly fighting with each other. Roseanne’s sister Jackie (Laurie Metcalf) bounced from job to job and from relationship to relationship. Over the course of the series, Roseanne and Dan both held a series of jobs, some which lasted longer than others.
In short, unlike the rest of the family sitcoms of the 1980’s and 1990’s, it felt realistic. Whether it was stretching your paycheck to pay the bills or fighting with your teenager because you did not like their boyfriend or girlfriend, the stories reflected the lives of the audience. And it was one of the funniest shows on television.
Do I recommend this show? Of course