Why Everyone (Yes, Even Men) Should Go See Greta Gerwig’s Little Women

Ladies and Gents, Greta has done it again! Over the long winter break, while UConn students were snug in their beds still sleeping off the stress of the fall semester, Sony Pictures released the seventh film adaption of Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women including an astounding cast and a new, satisfying take on the 1868 classic.  

The story has been loved for over 7 generations since its release as the sentimental, yet modern-minded novel, and it has continued to inspire audiences since then.  The focus of the story is on the March family, a mother and her four daughters: Meg - who fills the classic, domestic role of women with her search to find love and to become a housewife, Jo - as the rebellious sister who doesn’t want to marry and strives to support herself as a successful writer, Beth - the family-oriented sister who works to keep everyone happy and together, and Amy - the artistic sister that causes conflicts due to her often selfish and vain tendencies. These leading ladies are accompanied by their neighbors, Mr. James Laurence and his grandson Theodore “Laurie” Laurence. Together they form an amalgamation of character traits that make it incredibly difficult to pick a favorite character. 

Before seeing the movie, I had taken note that over the years since the story had made it to the Hollywood big screen, many men had reservations about seeing it due to it possibly being a “feminist agenda” or even going so far to dub it a “chick flick” (I mean, really?).  However, after seeing this particular version of the film I found myself at ease due to Gerwig’s commitment to following the content of the book and not allowing the story to stray far in efforts to make any comments directed towards a specific so-called “agenda”. Gerwig stays true to the book and pleasantly conveys the playful yet empowering mood that Alcott intended without taking anything too seriously. In regards to concerns about the story being for solely female audiences, I counter that it’s a story about youth and growing out of it. It hits upon various conflicts that most people will have to battle in their life. Whether it be figuring out your passion, things not going according to plan, or even finding mutual love in a person, Little Women discusses it all.

Since all of the sisters are so different in the things they desire and the choices they make, there is a lot of room to relate to different characters and so much to learn from the storylines.  Having all of these separate arcs within one story (and one family for that matter) allows for an exciting, curious aspect to the movie. Each character brings something different to the table and together they form an eclectic and satisfyingly smooth story with a hopeful and bright mood throughout. 

Lastly, I’d also like to point out that the combined talent between all members of the cast should go without saying. In addition to the four Academy Award nominations that the movie itself picked up, Saoirse Ronan snagged an Academy Award Best Actress nomination for her playing of Jo, and Florence Pugh, who plays Amy, was nominated for Best Supporting Actress. Also adding to the pot of talented actors in this movie is Laura Dern, also known as Mrs. March, who was also nominated this year for her role in the Netflix Original Marriage Story, and we can’t forget Timothée Chalamet, Gerwig’s Laurie, who was nominated in 2018 for his performance in Call Me By Your Name. I don't know how she did it, but Greta Gerwig was able to get a ridiculously talented cast for this movie, and I honestly think it could not have been more suited for these actors and actresses. 

All I’m saying is don’t write Little Women off. If a movie is nominated for six Oscars, you should probably consider going to see it.