Little Women

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"The story that has lived in our hearts for generations, now comes to the screen for the holidays."
  • PG
  • 1994
  • 1 hr 55 min
  • 7.3  (61,577)
  • 87

Little Women is a 1994 film adapted from the novel of the same name by Louisa May Alcott. Directed by Gillian Armstrong, the film stars Susan Sarandon as Marmee, Winona Ryder as Jo March, Kirsten Dunst as the young Amy March, and Claire Danes as Beth March. The movie is set during the Civil War, and it follows the story of four sisters as they navigate the challenges of growing up and finding their place in the world.

The film begins with Jo March living in New York City and struggling to get her writing published. As she reflects on her past, the story flashes back to her childhood in Concord, Massachusetts. Jo is one of four sisters living with their mother while their father fights in the war. Jo is the tomboyish rebel of the family, while her older sister Meg (played by Trini Alvarado) is the responsible and traditional one, Beth (played by Claire Danes) is the quiet and gentle one, and Amy (played by Kirsten Dunst first, and then Samantha Mathis in later scenes) is the spoiled and vain youngest.

Throughout the film, the sisters experience the joys and sorrows of growing up. They have adventures together, like putting on plays and attending parties, and they also face difficult challenges, such as when Beth becomes seriously ill. The sisters have different personalities and dreams for their futures, but they are united by their love for each other and their dedication to their family.

The heart of the film is the relationship between Jo and Marmee. Marmee is a strong, kind, and wise mother who helps her daughters navigate the ups and downs of life. She encourages Jo's writing and teaches her to be independent, while also reminding her of the importance of family and community. The scenes between Jo and Marmee are some of the most touching and memorable in the film, as they represent the bond between generations of women.

The film also explores themes of gender roles, social class, and the value of education. The sisters are all smart and talented, but they face limitations because of their gender and their family's financial situation. Meg is expected to marry well and be a good wife and mother, while Jo dreams of being a writer and defying societal expectations. The family is also aware of their social status and tries to balance their desire for material comforts with their belief in equality and helping others. The sisters' education is also a key aspect of the film, as they are encouraged to read and learn as much as they can, despite the challenges they face as women.

The performances in the film are excellent across the board. Winona Ryder is especially outstanding as Jo, capturing her fiery spirit and emotional depth. Susan Sarandon is also superb as Marmee, bringing warmth and wisdom to the role. Kirsten Dunst steals scenes as the little Amy, and Claire Danes is heartbreaking as the sickly Beth.

Overall, Little Women is a beautiful and moving film that captures the spirit of the beloved novel. It celebrates the bonds between women, the power of family, and the importance of following one's dreams. The film is both nostalgic and timeless, and it remains a classic to this day.

Little Women is a 1994 drama with a runtime of 1 hour and 55 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 7.3 and a MetaScore of 87.

Little Women
Where to Watch Little Women
Little Women is available to watch, stream, download and buy, rent on demand at Google Play, Apple TV, Amazon, YouTube VOD and Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent Little Women for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 55 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    7.3  (61,577)
  • Metascore