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Movie Review: Jennifer’s Body (September, 2009)

Director: Karyn Kusama
Screenplay: Diablo Cody
Actors: Amanda Seyfried, ed Megan Fox, neuropathologist Adam Brody, Johnny Simmons
Date of Release: September 18, 2009

Where do I begin? Walking into this movie, I had no idea what to expect, as I had kept my expectations low and had barely seen anything but a blip from the trailers. All I had gleaned was that a) it had Megan Fox b) it looked like a campy horror.

Well, here we go. Possible spoilers ahead:

Amanda Seyfried plays Anita “Needy”, the nerdy, plain jane best friend of Jennifer (Megan Fox), the popular beautiful girl of the school. One night, Jennifer implores Needy to join her at Melody Lane, the only local club in their small town to watch the band “Low Shoulder”. What happens there causes a whirlwind of problems for the rest of the town, and especially to Needy, who discovers that her best friend is now a demon, having been put through a ritual that went terribly wrong. Needy then tries her best to find out what she can do to defeat Jennifer and protect herself and those she loves from Jennifer’s need to feed.

I’m not sure what to make of it all. Those expecting to see “a lot” of Megan Fox will be disappointed. However, the acting from the two lead actors were, I thought, excellent. Ever since I saw Megan Fox at Comic-Con this year, I was not very impressed with her attitude or her personality, but I will give her the credit she deserves with her acting range here. She goes from crazy bitch to girl in distress during the ritual in all very believable yet amusing ways. Amanda Seyfried, as always, delivers a terrific and believable performance.

This dark comedy, as all dark comedies, will not be loved or even liked by everyone. The movie borders along silly, but there are some high and low points of the film. Some, where the line was pushed a bit too far into the realm of ridiculousness, and at other times, moments of thrilling entertainment. There are many memorably stupid/funny lines that are sure to tickle the bone for many viewers, and cause the rolling of the eyes of others. For example:

“Wow, She flies too?”
“No, she just hovers.”

The movie is quirky, no doubt about it. The story comes from the writer of Juno and United States of Tara known for the witty and unique humor found in both those productions, but on a very different level here, involving a self centered bitch and her hunger to feast on boys. It’s a movie that could have been a lot better, but it’s hard to take the movie seriously with the ridiculousness of the premise and the strange set-up. There is nothing redeemable about Jennifer, except her rather weird endearing manner of thinking she is the best at everything yet knowing nothing (and has no problem knowing anything), which makes this movie as interesting as a thin piece of paper. Needy is the interesting character here, who goes through the transformation of “sidekick best friend” to “formidable, courageous KICKER”.

But characters aside, the plot was really weak. Thoughts of “Wow, you’re really not intelligent are you” kept on going through my head over and over again as I saw boy after boy getting tricked by Jennifer to GO INTO THE FOREST with her to “discuss” certain matters. Funny perhaps to a few, but a complete cop out by Diablo Cody; she could have made the adventure a bit more creative. Editing could have been improved as many scenes did not run smoothly together, the sex scenes being the most obvious one. Needy on one end of the edited scene with her boyfriend Chip, and Jennifer devouring Needy’s friend Colin on the other end of the edited scene seemed choppy. Perhaps they were trying to achieve tension, comedy on one side, horror on the other, but it fell far from being at all scary. Whatever they were aiming for in this ill inter-weaved scenes did not connect with me whatsoever.

Most importantly, the film never strikes the perfect balance between comedy and horror and ends up falling apart.

I would wait for this one to come onto demand before paying any money to see this in the theatre. Perhaps if you’re bored out of your mind and want a silly teen flick semi-horror, Jennifer’s Body would be alright, but I would not really recommended until then. If you want to see Megan Fox, I suggest watching her in another movie. Go see “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs” this weekend instead.

1.5 demons / 5 demons

Rotten Tomatoes

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