January 17, 2008

Movie Review: Juno (2008)

I may be a folklorist some day, so I need to practice the dispersion of conspiracy theories. I'm worried that Fox Searchlight Productions is putting out movies pretending to be low-budget ironic independent films, which are actually making buckets of money for Rupert Murdoch. It's the same as, for instance, something like Kashi TLC crackers, which pretends like it was made by Ma & Pa Organic Kashi - but it's actually produced by Kellogg's, & has a list of creepy industrialized ingredients to prove it. If you can buy fifty-packs at Costco, there's a good chance it's not a family business.

As for movies, it's fine if Fox wants to pre-package independent comedies, but if they're secretly doing it to counter the flow of independent comedies having left-wing messages... Jason Reitman also directed Thank You for Smoking, a schmarmy movie if ever one deserved that adjective, with a bit of a libertarian streak in its morality. Juno, however, is a lovely movie, with a lovely girl as it's title character, & I love Michael Cera. Jenny Ruth complained that the dialog was affected. But I think it's okay if dialog sounds like dialog - that's the way old Hollywood movies are (say, The Thin Man), where characters are always saying clever things; not to mention The Lord of the Rings, or Oscar Wilde, or Tom Stoppard.

As for the secret indoctrination, there is some subtle not-so-subtle anti-abortion stuff neatly packed in the cracks of this accessible hipster tragicomedy. I love when the pregnant sixteen-year-old Juno calls an organization called "Women First" & casually states "Hello, I'd like to procure a hasty abortion." It's a great joke, as are the reasons she opts to keep the baby, dead-panning that it already has fingernails. Jokes like this would be fine in themselves (taboo subjects like abortion will always be fodder for edgier humor), but I'm suspicious of right-wing companies trying to co-opt our lefty markets, like Tom's of Colgate, or organic Cheetoes, or trendy documentaries & "offbeat" comedy movies, tapping into those coveted hippie consumer dollars. Fox! Stick to what you do best, like trashing democratic politicians, & making money off the Simpsons.


Brains said...

Not to mention Gilmore Girls. Or Pushing Daisies (TV shows that everyone loves, with affected dialog). I think it's OK too.

ß&dragon said...

I love when you comment on this webblog, Brains. Or... Brayns. Other art with affected dialog:

-Films of Andy Warhol
-Films of Yoko Ono
-Films of Bryan Aja
-Films of Christopher Marlowe
-Political commercials
-Leave it to Vagina
-tv shows of the future