Greta Gerwig’s adaptation of Louisa May Alcott’s classic novel Little Women, is an absolute joy from beginning to end and is the single greatest adaptation of Alcott’s novel ever made.
Little Women follows the lives of the March sisters- the nonconformist aspiring writer Jo (Saoirse Ronan), the traditionalist Meg (Emma Watson), the outspoken and spoilt Amy (Florence Pugh) and the quiet yet gifted pianist Beth (Eliza Scanlen).
Unlike Alcott’s classic that was published in two volumes, with the first volume set during the sister’s childhoods and the second continuing their stories as young adults, Gerwig decides to jump back and forth between the two time periods. This non-linear approach ultimately gives the story greater emotional heft as we experience the stark contrasts between the optimism of youth and the harsh realities of adulthood.
Little Women is a period piece that feels modern and relevant with its themes of economic and gender inequality still, sadly, being just as relevant as they were 150 years ago when Alcott wrote her revolutionary novel.
The characters are endlessly lovable and the cast are firing on all cylinders with the highlights being Saoirse Ronan and Florence Pugh (who have both deservedly picked up Oscar nominations for their incredible performances). The sets and costumes are exquisite and the score by Alexandre Desplat is utterly beautiful. Greta Gerwig has crafted a beautiful tribute to the women of the world, their virtues and all they can accomplish. It cements Gerwig as one of the most talented filmmakers working today and is easily one of the greatest films of the 2010’s.
Reviewed by Jordan Ellis.