Our Generation’s Little Women

Lilah Nelson, Print Staff

   There are many versions of the beloved book Little Women by author Louisa May Alcott. So it was hard to see where Greta Gerwig’s 2019 movie adaptation would fit in. Depicting modern day feminism in a 19th century setting seemed almost impossible, due to the fact that feminism has been used as more of a marketing tactic instead of a way to actually inspire viewers. 

   Instead of going through the plot linearly like so many other versions do, Gerwig introduces the characters in their adult life when the family is separated. Jo is already living in a boarding house in New York trying to sell her writing, Meg is picking through her pennies to see if she can afford a new dress, Amy is in London practicing high society when she is reunited with Laurie and Beth is still at home with a weak heart practicing her music. This gives the characters a lot more relatability and growth throughout the story when it goes back to when they are young living together with dreams and ambitions. Reminiscing over the magic of childhood, these scenes are depicted in yellow, golden light while in adulthood the colors look more realistic and challenging. 

   This movie is very special because it shows individuality while also showing the meaning of family and friendship. The connection between Marmi and her daughters is almost another character. It shows powerful motherhood while still being gentle. The dynamic between the characters is always rhythmic, like a song, even when the characters are separated. It’s beautiful. Each little woman has their own unique tune, but when they come together they create a symphony. They are all feminist icons. Each actor and actress plays their roles realistically and undoubtedly amazingly. Actress Florence Pugh, who plays Amy, was nominated for an Academy Award for her performance. 

   Written as a love letter to Louisa May Alcott, writer and director Greta Gerwig made a beautiful film, pulling all the heartstrings. It’s definitely a film to watch during this “coronacation.”