Jennifer's Body

Anybody who knows me (Andy) knows my love of teen girl flicks from Valley Girl to Clueless to Mean Girls and beyond. Well, Jennifer’s Body, despite the flogging it has received in the press, is a masterpiece of the genre.

jennifers_body_ver2I mean, how can you not love a movie where the lead character gets sacrificed to Satan to the sounds of Tommy Tutone? Underneath the gore and the occult stuff is a classic “mean girls” scenario of teen girl BFF-itude and rivalry, an astute examination of the kind of dysfunctional friendships that characterize high school and all too often life beyond. I want to hate Diablo Cody but I find myself suckered in by her self-aware hyper-stylized post-valley girl teenspeak lingo and her possibly cynical and formulaic but still endearing pop-culture in-jokes.  Jennifer’s Body is like a teen movie on twitter, full of shorthand and quick cuts and references that don’t linger long. We get it and don’t need to force the issue, unless we need to force the issue with a brickbat to the head. But still, as slight as it is, this trifle is delicious despite the gaping holes – like why in the climactic moment are we suddenly jettisoned back in time to a pre-cell phone era? Just to have the heroine run feverishly in a prom dress to try and rescue her boyfriend? Oops. Blew it. sorry to give that away. Spoiler alert! hah. oops. Anyhoo.

Amanda Seyfried is fantastic as “Needy” – the plain-Jane BFF and “wing-girl” to Megan Fox’s delightfully evil and pitch perfect vapid succubus/vampire/demon/hottie Jennifer. Gratuitous girl-on-girl action (can you say Wild Things?), ri-dick-ulous sex jokes and petty mean-spiritedness in the face of tragedy combine to make this fluffy film an archetypal psychologists dream as we plumb the depths of American Psyche and Eros. If you miss it in the theaters, it’ll make a great rental. F’reals.

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