Movie: Little Women
Director: Gillian Armstrong
Release Date: 1994
Cast: Winona Ryder, Christian Bale, Susan Sarandon, Kirsten Dunst, Trini Alvarado, Gabriel Byrne and Claire Danes
Synopsis: Set against the backdrop of civil war, Little Women is warm, light-hearted story of March Sisters- Meg, Jo, Beth, Amy and their quest to discover happiness in the tough times.
Review : Louisa’s masterpiece classic novel – Little Women has been adapted into movies several times and the 1994 movie directed by Gillian Armstrong truly lives up to the adaptation capturing the spirit of novel successfully. I had read Louisa’s novel – Little Women long back in 2006 and was eager to see the literary characters come alive on silver screen and after seeing this motion picture I was very much impressed with the direction, performance, soothing music and above all the soul of the novel – its simplicity which reflects in the movie too. Gillian Armstrong has captured all the moments of the novel very perfectly like March sisters sharing their Christmas breakfast with the poor children, Jo’s short tempered nature , her efforts to shoulder family responsibilities and her dreams to become a renowned writer.
Performance wise, Winona Ryder had portrayed the role of Josephine March with excellence and put her soul into the role to make the literary character immortal on-screen. This is indeed an Oscar-winning performance of Winona who reflects every mood and feel of Jo in terms of her anger, tomboyish nature and her sincere affection for her sisters Meg, Beth and Amy.
Among all the characters in Little Women, Beth March is my favourite character and Claire Danes has truly lived up to my expectations as Beth who is a lovely, shy and homely creäture. Christian bale is one of my favourite actor and his role as Laurie is really balanced and commendable. Even Susan Sarandon has essayed the role of Marmee very perfectly. Even though Gabriel Byrne has a little role in the movie, he too has delivered a good performance as Fredrich Bhaer who inspires Jo to write her childhood memories in form of novel. Little Women is about growing up in family and discovering happiness even in hard times.
I must have read the novel of Little Women thrice, but every time I read the book I discover a new aspect of life. If you have loved the novel, you will also enjoy this movie which is indeed refreshing, light-hearted and a timeless classic.