Friday, December 12, 2008

Honest to Blog

It's a thing. Whenever something comes out that's indie and hip and whatever. And then the hipsters decide too many people like it so they turn their backs. It's not indie and hip enough. It's actually lame. In fact, it's the worst thing ever.

Such was the case with Juno.

Not a surprise. It is really, really dialoguey in the beginning. I happen to love stuff like that--I like Gilmore Girls and Pamela Dean novels--so it worked for me. But not for everyone. I understand that. You don't have to love every movie. But when it's a year after Juno was released and you try to hope on the "I Hate Juno" bandwagon now, like you're the first person to find it annoying? Then you're just a hipster-wannabe asshat:

"Which brings us to the plot, with its weird pro-life message based on the single unconvincing fact that fetuses have fingernails (?), its focus on idiosyncratic but completely unnecessary details, like Michael Cera's orange tic tacs "addiction," which is about as interesting and important to the story as the entirety of Garden State. Then there's Juno's blatant hodgepodge of well-worn mid-90s to mid-00s indie tropes. There's the hand-crafted graphics and twee visual motifs made popular by Wes Anderson and Napoleon Dynamite. There's the older man falling for a teenager subplot of American Beauty, Beautiful Girls, Election, and half a dozen other movies. "

First of all, thanks for rehashing every argument made since January. You added a lot to the world. Second, I love idiosyncratic details. Again, I know other people don't, but I think they make an imaginary world fun. Juno's world is obviously not the real world, and that's a reason I like it. I want to see how people really interact, I want The Hills and tear out my eyeballs. Third, the pro-life thing is a little forced, but Juno isn't a big pro-lifey girl and it took one creepy thing to freak her out. We needed that to make sense of the situation for this character. The visual motifs are valid for the teen world in which Juno lives. (With some of the most realistic looking teens ever in film.) And the "older man" plot is one of those things like the "Romeo and Juliet" plot or the "underdog" plot. It's a thing. deal.

Is Juno the next Citizen Kane? No. Is it trying to be? No! It's a genuine, sweet, funny movie. You don't have to love it. You don't even have to like it. But you don't have to be an asshat about it, either.