"Juno" is funny (nearly every single line of dialogue is written to elicit laughter), directed with at just as sure a hand as "Thank You For Smoking".. possibly surer.. and acted gamely by the whole cast -- especially Olvia Thirlby and J.K. Simmons as the title character's galpal and understanding dad. The script, by Diablo Cody, is rich with one-liners; anyone who's read Candy Girl (which is unbelievably intelligent and funny; her description of Shania Twain, especially, had me rolling) will kind of know what to expect. This is without a doubt Ellen Page's show. She's in almost every scene, and I couldn't spot an instalnce when she made a bad decision or timed a delivery anything but dead-on. During a funky, kick azz opening title sequence, Juno is on her way to the pharmacy. "I just drank my weight in Sunny D, and gotta go, pronto!" It's time for another pregnancy test, because the last result looked more like a division symbol than a plus sign. New stick: same plus. The father's a guy Juno had sex with once upon a time, who also happens to be her best friend, Paulie Bleeker (a non-affected, quite bland Michael Cera). She decides to give it up for adoption, being 16 and all, which Paulie supports -- as do Juno's father and step-mom -- and the rest of the film is about her selection of adoptive parents. Pretty straightforward storytelling, but with an ear for quirky, hip dialogue. If the spoken words were any more "cool", or the actors speaking them did so with any less suave, my gag reflex might have taken over. The AFF audience I saw it with, last Sunday, couldn't get enough from the second Juno tells a dog to shut up, through lines comparing babies to iPods and Alison Janney going off on a physician. There's good stuff, here. And even though it never really swept me off my feet, the film is consistently humorous and, in one scene near the end, somewhat heartbreaking.
Comedy / Drama
Comedy / Drama
Faced with an unplanned pregnancy, an offbeat young woman makes an unusual decision regarding her unborn child.
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April 14, 2019