Thursday, 26 August 2010

Jennifer’s Body - A Eulogy (of sorts)

I wasn’t purposely avoiding it or anything, but I missed Jennifer’s Body when it came out last year. Perhaps it was my general apathy towards Megan Fox and Diablo Cody. Granted, I’ve never seen The United States of Tara, but I’m one of those people who doesn’t care for Juno, or Ellen Page in it.
Fox, you probably know, stars as the eponymous Jennifer who gets sacrificed to the Devil by a rock band (led by Adam Brody) hoping to find fame. The sacrifice goes awry and Jennifer returns to the world – demonised. She must now feed on boys to maintain her beauty. Her best friend Needy (Amanda Seyfried) starts to put the pieces together. Generally, I was pleased by Jennifer’s Body. It harbours the traits of Diablo’s other film – dialogue that’s too quirky to be funny at times, but for the most part I think Diablo’s writing has matured, for the most part Jennifer’s Body is doing something good.
         
FOR THE MOST PART…
She still doesn’t know to wrap up a film to save her life and it’s what buries Jennifer’s Body. Perhaps, I over exaggerate (well, it’s me, so that’s normal) it doesn’t make the movie god-awful, it’s not god-awful. Up until a few moments before a certain spring dance it’s looking good but an ill-fated and all too clichéd fight to the finish throws me for a loop. Sure certain tears shed over a dying person are well handled, Seyfried is quite good here actually, but it’s just all too ridiculous – and it was already ridiculous to begin with. She attempts to salvage herself as the credits roll and a certain fateful seen is shown the background, it helps, but it’s no resurrection. As much I think Jason Reiteman is an unspectacular director, Jennifer’s Body could have done with stronger direction, it could also have done with more work from Cody. But I don’t hate it; I like it very much in some parts. I don’t hate Diablo Cody, just apathetic. Writing wise, for the most part, Jennifer’s Body is a step up from Juno. The woman has talent; she just needs to harvest it. I’m hoping third times the charm for her.
       
What did you think of Jennifer’s Body last year? Or were you one of the assassins that ensured it tanked at the box office?

8 comments:

Marcy said...

I watched Jennifer's Body in theaters last year. I don't even remember why. But I do remember liking it.

I think it's a definitely a step up from Juno, writing and story-wise. I never cared for Juno, but unlike you, I do care for Ellen Page in Juno.

Walter L. Hollmann said...

I'm a fan of Diablo's work, and Jennifer's Body was my #10 of last year. I don't think it's that the writing is a step up from Juno, though; I think that we forgive more of her quirks because the genre lends itself to stylization. That final coda *is* weird, but I'd already fallen in love by that point. And that song!

Twister said...

I really liked this movie...my friend and I have watched it three times now and its just really fun more than anything else. It has a hard time balancing the horror and comedy, but I say its much more a comedy because I was rarely scared and I laughed alot.

Megan's hot, but the revelation for me is Seyfried who actually acts and really does make something out of Needy. She made her oddly compelling, and does some pretty interesting things with this wierd role. Maybe I'll review soon...

Yojimbo_5 said...

Not a fan. At all. I am a fan of Juno (and of Reitman, though I see him more as a producer-director than the opposite...and that's all irrelevent because Reitman didn't direct this). If Cody had a deeper meaning than female rivalry (which has been done and done better), I couldn't spot it. And although the idea had potential for something REALLY good and with a message, it ended up being all surface...like Megan Fox's beauty.

Andrew: Encore Entertainment said...

marcy it's sure of itself but never obnoxious about it which is one of the reasons i like it.

walter actually, it's remembering how much you liked it that me actually sit down and watch it. i'm really glad i did.

twister YES. amanda is really good here. surprising me all the time with where she takes needy and managing to always be realistic in the face of...well man eating women.

yojimbo hmmm, message. that's a good thought, but i think that's why i prefer this. she's not trying to make cliched platitudes like before and though i wasn't cheering for fox, she didn't make me want to scratch my eyes out. i do wish the ending made packed more a punch, though...

James D. said...

People who dislike Juno are a-okay in my book.

Burning Reels said...

I also recently watched this on DVD - I didn't have much hope so it was slightly better than I expected but still, fairly bland filmaking in the grand scheme of things.

I actually think Page and Juno are better than I initially thought - I don't see much in Cody though.

The Floating Red Couch said...

You're right, Diablo Cody is an awful person. As is Megan Fox. And Amanda Seyfried. Probably