26 December 2007
I'm a sap who likes coming-of-age movies dealing with love.
Coming-of-age films are just things I cannot ever steer away from, EVER. Well, coming-of-age films dealing with witty, acerbic and cynical 16-, 17- and 18-year-olds in high school, though I developed said characteristics when I was 11 years old. So I guess when I see films like Juno and Thumbsucker and The Squid and the Whale and et ecetera, I am always emotional because I can relate to the main characters. They usually the way they are because they want to have so much faith in humanity and believes in honesty and sincerity and true love.
Now on to my thoughts on Juno. To be honest, I was a little nervous and starting to backtrack on how I initially felt about it because of all the hooplah it was getting. Not to say that hype ruins films, but sometimes, it does, such as last year's Little Miss Sunshine, 2004's Sideways or 2005's Brokeback Mountain (I'm sorry, but even after I waited a little over a year to watch it after all the hype died down, it still gave me the cotton candy effect). I also got a really lame pretentious vibe from screenwriter Diablo Cody, simply because she boasts about leaving her Minneapolis middle-class background and neverminds the fact that she got a Media Studies degree from University of Iowa and to become a stripper for a year and talks about it in a blog and says she wears a "busted weave." I dunno, just felt weird about it.
But with all that pre-judgmental shit being said, I finally got to see the film today and lemme tell ya: I was very pleased. I was really happy to know that my gut instincts were right about how the movie was gonna be good and I actually like Cody's writing style. Every single actor in that film was incredible. But although everyone's going ga-ga for Ellen Page's performance--and rightly so--my boy Michael Cera was amazing. He now replaces Jamie Bell as my favorite young talent. He is just down-right fantastic with his straight-laced, dry sense of humor. I love his reaction to Juno when she says the only reason she fucks him is because she was bored that night: "...And I know you weren't bored because there were lots of stuff to watch on TV; The Blair Witch Project was coming on Starz, too." All with a straight face. Grand.
I really love the theme of understanding true love and how you can conquer the ugliness of it all if you actually tried really hard, as Juno proposes to Mark (Jason Bateman), who is a burnout post-modern rock musician who once opened for The Melvins in 1993. It's just something I firmly believe that most films do not focus on, and I'm not even talking about the lame romantic comedies that is just a shit storm of sappiness. I'm talking a realistic comedy that really pinpoints the beauty and grotesqueness of it all, in which Juno succeeds tremendously.
Two very important tracks from the film:
The Moldy Peaches - Anyone Else But You
Sonic Youth - Superstar (Carpenters cover)
p.s. I love when Juno argues with Mark saying that she got a Sonic Youth album and it was nothing but a bunch of noise. Ha. That's exactly how I reacted when I got Daydream Nation when I was 18. And now look at me. Obsessed.