Movies: Little Women, one really big adaptation

On Christmas day 2019, a familiar story hit theatres once again. Little Women is a heartwarming tale about life, love, and family, told for the first time by Louisa May Alcott in 1868, in addition to three novel sequels. There have been many film adaptations since, the most recent being a modernized adaption made in 2018. 

This 2019 interpretation surpasses all of them. Writer/Director Greta Gerwig uses contrast of storylines taking place in both childhood and adulthood, as well as staying true to the events and era of the novels.

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Jo March (Saoirse Ronan) is faced with the reality of being an independent female writer in the late 19th century. Her undeniable love for her family, especially her sisters, keeps her afloat in the hardest of times as she struggles with society’s traditional views of a woman’s role, tragedy, and a serious case of writer’s block. 

The movie’s only obvious disappointment was Emma Watson’s performance as Meg March. Amid the powerful portrayals of Jo and Amy (Florence Pugh), Watson’s performance fell a little flat. However, as the part of Meg in this film wasn’t as significant as her role in the novels, it did not detract significantly from the film.  

Overall, Little Women was well worth the price of admission. The cinematography was beautiful, saturated in colourful symbolism. This movie was a beautiful adaptation and ode to the wondrously classic works of Louisa May Alcott.

Fans of the book will love this masterpiece, and those who haven’t read the book will still be captivated by the story of these vibrant and lovable girls. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll fall in love with these timeless characters. 

Rating 9/10 - Beautiful cinematography, cohesive narrative, truly captivating.

Claire McConnell is a Burnaby resident who writes about movies for the NOW.

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