February 21, 2008

February Movie Review: Juno

I just got out of Juno.

IMDB tells me it is by Jason Reitman, who apparently also did "Thank you for Smoking". Which makes me even sadder I could not watch it...

Juno speaks of...
Oh yeah, sorry, be warned, this will not be SPOILER-free. Possibly far from it, even.

Juno speaks about the unwanted pregnancy of a 16 year old girl, Juno (or Junebug, as her parents affectionately call her) and of how she deals with it.
Well, she deals with it with more maturity than I would, I fear. And I'm 9 years older than she is. She decides to give him/her/it to a couple who do not manage to have their own (its own?).
We accompany her during the 9 months of her pregnancy. The movie is not about the physical aspects of the pregnancy (nausea and all those great things mothers have and will live(d) ), but more on the effects on others: she's seen as a freak at her school, the wannabe mother of the adoptive couple looks at her as a lucky one, the father of the child, a lanky dude rather off-beat, see her as a wizard, as he calls her.

Juno's character is an energetic girl, who lives life without giving up. I... Ihave said I am french, but english is my second language. Well, I was happy to have the french subtitles >___<. I have never heard so many slang terms, and I will get the DVD just to write and learn them :D. Ellen Page is here in the kind of roles she plays to their fullest. She needs characters with a lot of energy: she was great in Hard Candy , chasing pedophiles and giving out Justice, but not so great as the timid Kitty Pryde in the third X Men (I know, I know, "there is no third X Men Movie". I concur; but still...). She needs to talk, more than she moves. Her voice carries many emotions.

But she is not alone in this movie.
To quote her, Juno is "a planet", around who orbit many interesting characters. Her family is disfunctionnaly functional: the father (J. K. Simmons or J Jonah Jameson from Spider Man 3; I knew I knew him from somewhere!!) does not really show any emotions even though he seem to boil with them, and has this kind of dry humor I'm rather fond of. The mother in law (Allison Janney) [Allmighty Zeus?! Prudy from Hairspray?!] is a no-nonsense woman who takes control of the situation after Juno tells them the news. She doesn't take shit from anyone, but has a heart of gold. The little sister is... transparent. So much, in fact, that they start to forget her when Juno finally "dumps her thing".
The father of the child, with who she faults, is played by Michael Cera, whose head tells me something, but I can't quite place my finger on where... He's one of those kids in high school: they do not talk much, they are intelligent, a bit "different", not the ones in the spotlight, and who still shine in some awkward way.
Olivia Thirlby is the cheerleader best friend. Nice smile, not always up to speed with the action, but supportive all the way. I hope my friends would do the same would I need them (and I'm sure some would ;) )
And let's not forget Jason Bateman and Jennifer Garner as the wannabe adoptive couple. She plays well the working girl and I'm sorry to say I'm supportive of Jason's character reaction. I have been confined to a cave and part of a room, let me tell you, it is not something you like to live with...

Anyway, this post is already quite long, and I have rather lost what I wanted to say in the first place, but this movie is one I have tremendously enjoyed and thus, I recommend it to you, o readers!

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