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Movie Review: Catherine Called Birdy (3/10)

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by Tony Medley

108 minutes.

PG-13.

Lena Dunham has written and directed this ludicrous film (apparently intended as a comedy) about a teenaged girl in 1290s England. The plot presented is that 14-year-old Birdy (Bella Ramsey) is being used by her useless family of aristocrats to be sold in marriage to someone who will pay big bucks to allow them to continue to live in their privileged lifestyle.

There are so many problems with the film. One is that every character in the film is a 21st Century personality placed in the 13th. Worse, 13th Century English society was nothing like this film. Glaring in its absurdity is picturing innumerable Africans as prominent members of society, even members of Royalty and members of bi-racial marriages. In 1290 England? No doubt some in this woke world will see “actors” in these roles and ignore the historical racial impossibilities. But that is cowing to presentism which is a desecration of history, and it needs to be exposed and rejected in defense of honesty.

There was probably nobody like Birdy in 1290 but there was probably nobody like anyone else in the film, either.

However, on the positive side, Dunham, who has been shamed by reprehensible, cruel people for her weight, cast Ramsey as her star, even though she is not one of Hollywood’s outlandishly beautiful people, and is a little plump and could probably pass physically for a young woman in 13th Century England. And Ramsey gives a sterling performance.

Even so, the rest of the casting and story are so ridiculously 21st-Century woke, it was agony to sit through. Opens October 7.

Tony Medley is an MPAA accredited film critic. His reviews are published in The Larchmont Chronicle, Telicom Magazine, The Tolucan Times, CWEB.com, robinhoodnews.com, on Rottentomatoes.com, the Movie Review Query Engine, and at www.tonymedley.com.

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