Movies, TV, and entertainment, in general, are all businesses where you can see our wildest dreams come to life. Whether it be a blockbuster megahit or a stunning indie film, a director, creator, actor, producer, and writer’s vision can truly find its footing in the form of visual art. Every so often, someone will come along in this entertainment industry and blow our minds. In fact, every film begins as an idea, and those who possess those groundbreaking ideas will eventually create projects that will rewrite and completely revolutionize the film space. Well, one of the people who did just that is actress, screenwriter, and director Greta Gerwig.
If you are even a little familiar with the film industry these days, you definitely know Gerwig. Gerwig came out as a refreshing face of women representation in filmmaking, as outlined by TIME, and, with the projects she has on her back, as an actor and as a writer/director, we cannot be more excited to see more form her. In fact, with her new Barbie movie becoming one of the most anticipated projects in the near future — set to release next July 2023, per IndieWire — it is safe to say that she is a force to be reckoned with in entertainment. From Academy Award nominees Little Women and Lady Bird to the jaw-dropping Frances Ha and Mistress America, we have put together a list of some of the best films written by the one and only Greta Gerwig.
6 Hannah Takes the Stairs
The 2007 romance movie Hannah Takes the Stairs is a great showcase of Gerwig’s talent in both writing and acting. This movie, described as a mumblecore film, follows Gerwig’s character Hannah, who has recently graduated from college and ends up developing a crush on two men that she works with, played by Kent Osborne and Andrew Bujalski. Hannah Takes the Stairs is the perfect way to get introduced to Gerwig’s work, and the film overall touches on the everyday human hardships of developing relationships and navigating life in the city.
5 Mistress America
Gerwig stars in the 2015 drama comedy Mistress America as the determined Brooke alongside Lola Kirke, and was directed by Noah Baumbach. This movie beautifully pairs the drama attached to complicated family dynamics and youthful drifting through life and incredibly genuine humor that would pull in audiences. Gerwig’s performance as an actor, reflected in the writing, established a lot of heart and charisma needed to make a movie like Mistress America this good. Since Gerwig has continued to put forward her multifaceted talents in entertainment, we remain in awe of her projects that showcase her writing abilities as well as her acting.
4 Nights and Weekends
Nights and Weekends is also categorized as a mumblecore film that occupies the drama genre of film. This movie came out in 2008 and is one of the earlier projects where Gerwig receives directorial credits as well as acting in the starring role. Honestly, what can be more dramatic than a long-distance relationship? This movie follows James (Joe Swanberg) and Mattie (Gerwig) in the early and later years of their relationship.
3 Little Women
When Gerwig’s 2019 Little Women dropped, so did our jaws. This movie is without a doubt a standout in Gerwig’s impressive filmography. This film adaptation of the 1868 book by Louisa May Alcott is one of many film adaptations of this classic. The coming of age film follows the lives of a group of sisters: Jo, Meg, Amy, and Beth March. From young love and a kindred sisterhood to overcoming societal expectations and prejudices, this movie is one to watch. Also, can we talk about the absolutely impeccable the cast is? We have Saoirse Ronan, Florence Pugh, Emma Watson, Eliza Scanlen, Timothée Chalamet, Laura Dern, and Meryl Streep! If you need any motivation to finally watch this incredible six-time Academy Award-nominated film, consider this it.
2 Frances Ha
Frances Ha came out in 2012, and it is a stunner. This film is artistry in motion and was directed by Baumbach. Gerwig, along with being a writer on this film, starred as Frances, a struggling dancer living in New York. Also included in the cast is Adam Driver, Mickey Sumner, and Michael Zegen. The film follows the 27-year-old as she becomes an apprentice at a dance company. This beautifully crafted black and white film explores themes of self-acceptance, perseverance, and finding the magic existing in everyday life. We can talk all day about Gerwig’s impact on modern entertainment as a writer, but it would be a disservice to leave Frances Ha out of the conversation.
1 Lady Bird
Lady Bird, Gerwig’s solo directorial debut, is pretty much the cherry on the top of the Greta Gerwig thousand-layered cake. In 2017, Gerwig offered up the masterpiece of a coming of age drama film that was jam-packed full of charm, wit, and heart that it became an instantly recognizable, modern-day classic. Lady Bird, starring Saoirse Ronan, Timothée Chalamet, and Beanie Feldstein, follows a young girl facing the struggles in her senior year in high school, as well as her family troubles with her mother. There is just something about Lady Bird that is pretty much perfect for people of ages who want to be seen during a time when things appear the most confusing. Ronan delivers one of the most stellar performances in her career, and this movie remains to be Gerwig’s most iconic project.