What's so great about Little Women
"Little Women": Big cinema!
Yes, this is the seventh film adaptation of the famous book by Louisa May Alcott. True, even if you haven't seen any of them, you roughly know what it's about: four sisters, whose father is fighting in the American Civil War, will grow up - without a husband in the house. That sounds like a moderately exciting evening at the cinema? Are you kidding me? Are you serious when you say that! Here are seven reasons why you should definitely go to "Little Women" by Greta Gerwig:
1. This film deals with a hot topic: women's financial independence. Josephine, called Jo, will ultimately be the only one of the four March sisters who earns her own money: as a writer. Meg (Emma Watson), the eldest to marry a poorly paid tutor, opts for a life of poverty. The scene in which she has to ask her husband for money for a new dress is one of the most touching in the film.
And Greta Gerwig knows that this problem is still far from being solved 150 years later. “I always hear that you women have achieved so much now. Yes, that's right, ”says the director, who also wrote the script. “But when it comes to economic power, men are still seven centuries ahead of us.” When she read “Little Women” again a few years ago, Gerwig says, “I was almost shocked by how modern it is”. Unfortunately she is right.
2. Greta Gerwig. The 37-year-old comes from the independent scene and has always done what she wanted as a screenwriter and actress with idiosyncratic films ("Greenberg", "Frances H") about idiosyncratic women. And so well that she now plays in the A-League - and is now even more noticeable with idiosyncratic, feminist statements.
3. The women. What a lively, (mostly) good-humored bunch of women in the March house! A purely female community who enjoy each other and stick together for better or for worse. When does a woman ever see that on the big screen?
4. The men. All understanding women who encourage the sisters to follow their talents (writing, painting, playing the piano). That this doesn't work is because of the patriarchy, but not because of these nice guys. “It's not like patriarchy is only great for men,” says Gerwig - and shows us men of solidarity. That makes the feminist heart happy.
5. The ensemble. Above all the wonderful Saiorse Ronan (thanks to Ellen DeGeneres we know: This Irish name speaks “Sörscha”), who is absolutely rightly nominated for an Oscar for her role as rebellious Jo. But Emma Watson (attention: cover story in the next EMMA!) As Meg, Laura Dern as mother and of course Meryl Streep as grumpy aunt are a real joy.
6. The director. It's hard to believe that this is only Greta Gerwig's second film as a director. In 2019 Gerwig's debut was Oscar-nominated for Best Director. "Ladybird" was a small but fine coming-of-age story. With its wild tracking shots, the nested narrative levels and the opulent décor, “Little Women” is really big cinema.
7. The Oscar. Still, Little Women is not nominated for Best Director (it would have been the sixth nomination for a female director in the history of the Oscars). But at least six times in other categories, including best film. You don't have to be particularly pessimistic, you just have to be realistic to prophesy: “Litte Women” will come away empty-handed. Because although the story of the March sisters is about absolutely existential issues, unfortunately only about women's lives. Against this: men in World War I, men in the mafia, men as desperate murderers.
The feminist Greta Gerwig is smart enough to know that. She built it into her film as a scene. “Who should be interested in our life?” Jo asks her sisters. Amy replies, "Maybe it will be important when someone writes it down."
Little Women became one of the most widely read books in the United States. And now Greta Gerwig has filmed the story of the March sisters again. Because it's important.
So: go in!
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