While Lena Dunham worked on girl, she was already cooking up the details of her next passion project. After reading Karen Cushman‘s novel entitled Catherine named Birdy, the actress/director wanted to adapt the story to screen in a comedic and relevant way. The upcoming film follows Catherine, a girl in 13th-century England who opposes her father’s plan to marry her off to a nobleman in exchange for her family’s restored wealth. In an interview with Indie Wire, Dunham said she wanted to capture a main character that felt relatable and not necessarily the superheroine that audiences have seen in recent years.
“It was a time when teenage heroines were almost expected to have magical powers or wield a sword. It was either ‘Hunger Games’ or ‘Twilight’… that’s what teenagers thought they wanted. And this heroine has no magical powers. She doesn’t have a sexy romance with an outsider. It’s not like an adult fantasy about what it’s like to be a teenager. It’s just what it means to be a teenager.”
Given that the film will end up streaming, here’s a detailed guide to when and where you can play this light-hearted coming-of-age story.
When is Catherine Called Birdy coming out?
The historical film celebrated its world premiere on September 12, 2022 at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF). Leading Stars Bella Ramsay, Andrew Scott, Joe Alwynand Isis Hainsworth walked the red carpet with Dunham and participated in the post-screening Q&A. After that, the coming-of-age story had its official theatrical release on September 23. Now it’s time for audiences to fall in love with the outspoken main character, who seeks adventure and freedom in her hometown of Stonebridge Manor. The film will be available on Amazon Prime Video from October 7th.
Where can you stream the film?
Those interested in seeing this comedic take on the historical novel must either opt to watch it in theaters or have an Amazon Prime Video subscription to watch it via streaming. Amazon Prime members are automatically granted access to the Prime Video catalog as part of their goods and services. If you subscribe to Amazon Prime, you have a 30-day free trial after you create your account. After this period, a fee of $12.99 per month for general audience and $6.49 for students will apply. If you don’t want to become an Amazon Prime member but want to watch TV shows, movies, and sports, you can pay a monthly fee of $8.99 just to use the Prime Video services.
Watch on Amazon Prime Video
“Would I rather die than be forced into marriage? I don’t find either option attractive.” In the trailer, Catherine (better known as Birdy) is told by her father that she needs to get married. Despite this clear instruction, the girl does not want to follow the rules and even convinces one of her admirers that she is a hideous creature and has a third ear and therefore would not be an ideal match. The more she tries to pull herself away from a marriage proposal, the more hopeless her father feels and searches for a solution to their family’s financial loss. As Birdy looks for ways to enjoy her life and stand up for her independence, she is determined to hold on to the idea that women are enough just the way they are.
More female coming-of-age movies to watch next
If the tale of a free-spirited girl who chooses to follow her dreams instead of finding a husband sounds familiar to you, that’s probably because this story has been portrayed multiple times in movies. If you’re looking for other period stories that feature a strong female character defying the status quo, here are some recommendations that fit the profile.
Emma (2020) – One of the pioneers in writing stories about women speaking their minds and defying stereotypes is Jane Austen. Her book Emma was recently adapted to the screen, with Anya Taylor Joy play the main character. Growing up in 19th-century England, Emma is a bright and wealthy young girl who is not afraid to interfere in her boyfriends’ love lives. That is, until she meets an ideal suitor in a matchmaking game.
little woman (2019) – The Marsh sisters have very different goals in life. From one sibling aiming to become a published author and another looking to settle down and start a family of their own, this coming-of-age drama chronicles their upbringing and growth as they pursue their dreams. Director and Screenwriter Greta Gerwig carefully directs this adaptation to the original source material without making it feel like a dated storyline. Some of Hollywood’s best such as Saoirse Ronan, Florence Pugh, Laura Dernand Timothy Chalamet are among the stars of this treasured ensemble.
Mary Shelley – Have you ever heard of the classic novel with the title Frankenstein? If the name sounds familiar, you should know that this next recommendation refers to the author of the book. In the movie Mary ShelleyViewers catch a glimpse of the aspiring writer (portrayed by Elle Fanning) at the age of 16 when she fell in love with Percy Shelley (played by Douglas Booth). Their relationship paved the way for Mary to write the gothic novel that has made her name memorable to this day.