Juno: Review’d

March 6, 2008

JunoEasily the best film about teenage pregnancy ever! No, really, Juno is funny, tender, romantic, and life-affirming — occasionally it’s all four of these things at the same time. Plus it has a kick-ass soundtrack.

It manages to pull off an impressively tricky and increasingly rare feat: bringing a light and uplifting touch to what could have been either a dumb, gross-out teen comedy or a joyless highbrow dirge for self-righteous Independent readers. Thankfully Juno is neither of these things, but is instead an unexpectedly witty film, stuffed full of clever, memorable lines and scenes.

Take the part where Juno’s spilling the beans to best friend Leah, for example: “I’m pregnant.” “It’s probably just a food baby. Did you have a big lunch?”

Okay, so it’s a bit self-consciously cool for its own good at times, but Ellen Page and the rest of the cast do a mostly brilliant job with often very difficult subject matter. As well as Ms. Page, I’ll single out Jennifer Garner, who delivers a surprisingly realistic and heartfelt performance as a control-freak wife who has her hopes of adopting her own child repeatedly dashed by circumstances beyond her power to change.

And the really great thing about it is that it flips between the emotional sledgehammer bits and the light and funny bits effortlessly. But back to that soundtrack… I wish I’d written the song that Juno and Bleeker sing at the end:

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