Jennifer’s Body (***)
The winds of change sweep into every avenue of our lives without regard to time or place. It can be the passing of a dear friend, a change in ideology religiously or politically, marriage, a new baby, a new job, or something seemingly inconsequential, such as hairstyles, fashion and music. But one thing will never change as long as Father Time keeps tick-tocking away: High school sucks.
Some will disagree. They’ll say their four years of high school were nothing but bliss. You know what I say to that? Horsecrap. Put down the crack pipe and take the bullet train back to reality please. Sure, there were memorable moments during my high school career (most of which involve rounding the bases with various girls) but as a whole, being a teenager sucked. And now that my daughter has a tippy-toe into her teenage years, I’m starting to understand why my parents aged dramatically from 1988 to 1992 and why My Chemical Romance sang “teenagers care the livin’ s**t out of me.”
Diablo Cody knows a thing or two about high school and about teens. She wrote the screenplay for the hit comedy Juno, which received much love and adoration back in 2007 and led to the former stripper’s latest gigs, writing/creating the Showtime series The United States of Tara, and pumping out another screenplay, this one a hor-com (I just made that up!), entitled Jennifer’s Body. Considering Megan Fox (Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen) is the lead in Jennifer’s Body, the hor-com descriptor might not be that far off. Oh, I kid! I kid! I’m sure Megan and her collagen-enhanced lips are perfectly kindhearted and full of love. I’m also sure that Michael Bay’s crew would absolutely disagree with that statement.
Despite loathing Megan Fox, I think Jennifer’s Body is a win for Diablo Cody and the film delivers on both the comedy and horror fronts, albeit I’m not sure the film was as scary as it was gory. The writing is sharp and witty – the Diablo Cody calling card – and shows her keen eye for social observation, as well as hilarious made-up words and phrases, such as “freaktarded” and “tragedy boner.” In a nutshell, Diablo Cody has constructed the anti-Twilight. There is no way Bella and Edward exist in Cody’s world, one that, despite the maximum dose of whip-like sarcasm, seems more acutely tuned to real life than Stephanie Meyer’s vampire fantasyland. In Diablo Cody’s high school, Bella and Edward would be eaten alive. Literally.
I won’t go into the plot or story of Jennifer’s Body too much in this review. You can read more of that in Dan’s review, but suffice it to say, I liked the movie more than he did. As much as I hate to say it, Megan Fox was great as the demon-infested title character, and Amanda Seyfriend, who plays Jennifer’s nerdy pal, Needy, is definitely on the Ellen Page (Juno) level for both talent and cuteness. The movie has some memorable lines and scenes, including a kissing scene between Fox and Seyfried that almost lit the screen on fire, and has a fantastic soundtrack from Fueled by Ramen (the label started by Fall Out Boy bassist Pete Wentz) that includes tunes from Panic at the Disco, Cobra Starship, All Time Low and Paramore.
If you liked Juno, you definitely will like Jennifer’s Body, but be forewarned, it’s gory, has some spicy language and is definitely an R rated movie. The aforementioned kissing scene had some folks at the theater walking out and might have even made Doug Wright’s hair go even whiter.