Jennifer’s Body (2009)
Directed by Karyn Kusama Written by Diablo Cody
You know how they say as terrible as car wrecks can be, they’re almost impossible to keep your eyes off of? That’s how I would describe Diablo Cody’s work. She writes okay for the younger audiences of today. I just also believe it’s rather unfortunate that anyone would find her dialogue entertaining in the least. Cody did a TV series for a couple of years called The United States of Tara that I really enjoyed. Mainly due to the cast though, while the concept was good, it was like they ran out of material for a character that was already plenty interesting. Then after they ran out of ideas, just kept adding and adding until it led to a cancelled series. Often writing predictable scripts and her depiction of this generation, if that in fact what it is, both worries and scares me.
Jennifer’s Body opens up to Jennifer (Megan Fox) laying down looking a bit sluggish. Panning to Needy (Amanda Seyfried) who seems confined within a penitentiary of some sort. Giving hints at what was to come, concluding on the notion that wherever she had ended up, she had become some renowned “badass.” You then have Needy narrate the story detailing the events of how her best friend became more than just “high school evil.”
No really, that’s the tagline. A small side story concerns a band from the big city in which they come to the small town in hopes of finding a virgin they can sacrifice. Of which they hope by giving her to the Devil, will make them famous beyond belief.
The directing of the film itself greatly helped in being enjoyable to watch. It had the majority of dark tones which made it aesthetically pleasing. The soundtrack was also enjoyable. It just seemed a bit all over the place in that there were too many questions that were presented but never seemed to bother with answers. The relationship presented between Fox’s and Seyfrieds character created a couple of questions and a reference to “sandbox love” never dying when I didn’t see any real relevance to the flashbacks or the make out scene between the two. There also seemed to be this odd bionic abilities linking Needy to Jennifer. If it was Cody’s way of hinting at a romance that could have been well, that’s just another type of movie now isn’t it folks?
Did it shock me that Megan Fox was good at the gagging sequence and after becoming a demon was able to pull off the almost constant and inevitable slutty scenes? Not in the least. She well…did some damn fine acting there if I say so myself. Pssh. Fox played the role of the hot girl in school, quite the stretch I imagine and lost 15 pounds in order to keep up the at times sick appearance. In a shadow scene in which she’s mutilating a body however, she disappears almost entirely casting the tiniest semblance of a shadow. Fox would have looked just as hot with the 15 on, if you’d even be able to tell the difference. The “cute” baby talk Jennifer used throughout became painfully annoying from the initial moment and only got worse as the movie progressed. Using terms such as “extra salty” and “lime green jelly;” sentences that made me progressively bothered that this language, if you can call it that, is what generations after me will deem as cool. It made you laugh but more so at the thought that it was meant as trendy. The very reason of how Jennifer becomes a demon involved her getting into a van with the band that she just saw perform after the bar catches on fire and she goes into a catatonic state. If something tragic just happened and everyone starts running away and you CHOOSE to go with a group of strangers instead of someone you KNOW, then I can choose to feel no sympathy for your slutty tendencies, or your bad acting.
Jennifer’s Body did have a talented supporting cast making the film more enjoyable since they were hilarious and fun to watch on-screen. The one casting of which was the most difficult to believe was Adam Brody and his portrayal of an alternative rock star wannabe. Apparently casting had been interested in getting members of Good Charlotte for the role but they decided to go with Brody instead. I hope the reason being that he was more comedic than intimidating since I believe that’s what they ended up going for. I hope he wasn’t to be taken for real. Johnny Simmons, J.K. Simmons, Chris Pratt and Kyle Gallner were amongst a couple that were sure to bring their own individual charm, even if only for a couple of screen minutes.
Quite honestly the reason I believe Cody’s scripts get so much attention, whether good or bad, is because they’ve been pretty good at casting good leads. Juno was simply something girls could relate to at the time it was released, it was Ellen Page and Michael Cera and their humor which wasn’t exactly too far outside their comfort level. The United States of Tara worked well because Toni Collette and John Corbett were amazingly funny and talented actors. The show was inauthentic enough without giving the shows main character a new identity every episode. SO, the movies good for a couple laughs varied between both bad and okay performances. Worth seeing at least once or twice if nothing else is attainable at the time.