Greta Gerwig’s Little Women might be the perfect movie.

It manages to be romantic and charming, and utterly real at the same time.

First of all, this version of Little Women sets itself apart from the other adaptations of Louisa May Alcott’s classic novel with its unconventional timeline.  The movie starts in the middle of the story, then goes back and forth.

Not only does this approach make Gerwig’s movie more interesting to watch, but it also emphasizes the differences between the March sisters’ lives right away.  It doesn’t just focus on their childhood, but rather introduces their separate lives as adults and then goes back to show you how they got there.

Each sister’s life is completely different from the others, though they grew up the same way.  The audience is first introduced to Jo March, an independent, aspiring writer who sells her stories to a newspaper.  Her older sister Meg is married and is raising two little children, Amy is studying as a painter in France, and Beth is at home with her parents.

One of the best things about Little Women was the way it showed the many different strengths and goals of the March sisters, and extensively, women in general.

Rather than tearing down any woman’s dream, Gerwig portrays them all with equal specialness.  Getting married, helping people in need, having children, making a living on their own, becoming an artist: the March women do it all.

Little Women illustrates the many talents of women, but it is a movie that both men and women will enjoy.  It is visually beautiful and emotionally inspiring, and overall impossible to dislike.

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