Juno: The Poll

Juno: The Poll

****
6
14%
*** 1/2
6
14%
***
12
29%
** 1/2
9
21%
**
5
12%
* 1/2
2
5%
*
1
2%
1/2 *
1
2%
0
0
No votes
 
Total votes: 42

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Postby Hustler » Wed Feb 06, 2008 1:35 pm

Add me to the list of those who liked Little Miss Sunshine more than Juno. The film is pleasant, even though not an oscar caliber film. As for Ellen Page, I´m still doubting if she portrayed a character or she´s like her character in real life.

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Postby OscarGuy » Mon Jan 28, 2008 4:25 pm

Here's my review for Juno.

Juno - *** 1/2
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Postby dws1982 » Fri Jan 25, 2008 1:04 am

I'll also give it a solid ***, which is a pretty major surprise for me. I kind of expected to hate it, which may have caused me to overrate somewhat, but I was very surprised.

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Postby Steph2 » Thu Jan 24, 2008 12:18 am

A really solid *** stars. Better than Michael Clayton. (though I'd rate them similarly)

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Postby OscarGuy » Wed Jan 23, 2008 6:00 pm

Vote on Juno
Wesley Lovell

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Postby Sabin » Sat Jan 19, 2008 11:14 am

I think Juno is charming, I really do. But imagine if say, Lindsay Lohan rather than Ellen Page had played the title character? Would we be talking about Best Picture...?

We'd be talking about breast augmentation and crotch rot. Is there anything else to discuss in the world of Lohan besides this?
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Postby The Original BJ » Sat Jan 19, 2008 1:45 am

I've mostly left Juno alone this season (mainly because I think it operates on such a higher level than last year's big "indie" comedy...at least we're moving up in the world), but Mister Tee brings up an excellent point about how far "indie-ness" can apparently get you in terms of critical acclaim and awards prospects. Knocked Up, the year's other pregnancy comedy, received plenty of good notices, but no one is even remotely considering it for Best Picture -- no one would be surprised if it nabbed a screenplay slot, but I don't think anyone would be surprised if it missed either. I'd also recall Mean Girls, another smarter-than-average teen flick that was talked about as a long-shot screenplay candidate at best...but of course never came anywhere near anything higher.

But here's slight little Juno, locked and loaded with a screenplay and actress who could possibly top the weighty heavy-hitters, gunning for a Best Picture nomination. Meanwhile, ambitious pictures like Assassination of Jesse James, I'm Not There, and Zodiac struggle to even place as low as screenplay categories. And Atonement -- maybe not a great great film, but one with far more ambition, resonance, and technical prowess than this trifle -- is gasping its last breaths to keep from going under.

I think Juno is charming, I really do. But imagine if say, Lindsay Lohan rather than Ellen Page had played the title character? Would we be talking about Best Picture...? ???

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Postby Mister Tee » Thu Jan 10, 2008 2:46 pm

There's shockingly little to say abut Juno, the movie. I found it perfectly pleasant and amusing, in a through-a-low-grade-fever sort of way. It had nowhere near the loud laugh quotient of Knocked Up, but it did have a far smoother structure. Knocked Up's comic elements and its serious aspirations seemed to be mashed together unconvincingly; here, the film seems of a piece -- mildly insightful, mildly funny. The story did take a few unexpected turns, specifically in the Bateman sections, and it had a couple of scenes that worked on a higher level than others: Garner at the mall, and, especially, Cera and Page at Cera's locker -- for me, the one scene in the film in which Cody's much-touted screenwriting lived up to its rep, striking every note perfectly.

Oh...and what was it with that five-minute closing shot that went nowhere? They might as well have said "we don't know how to end thsi, so we'll just stop slowly".

As for the cast, Page is exceedingly winning, but the performance is, as mentioned, more Maggie McNamara than anything else -- a triumph of personality more than histrionic ability. Bateman, Simmons and Janney are simply pros, and Garner is better than usual. And the other kids are fine. I liked the movie...more or less. (Alot more than Miss Sunshine, since everyone else is weighing in on that score)

I can't say I'm surprised the movie's such a hit; decent movies about wise-cracking teens frequently are, though probably less often from a female point of view. The big question is, why were people so quick to characterize this as an indie? That's the only thing that makes its success seem aberrational (and turns it into a best-picture-nomination contender). For that, you have to consider Juno, the critical phenomenon -- which is a far more interesting subject. What possessed critics to so inflate this trifle? Not just the now-embarrassing Roger Ebert, but also A. O. Scott, and others who ought to know better. Are critics so tired of being out of the mainstream that they'll leap at the chance and over-inflate anything they like that skirts popular taste? Or is Toronto compression a factor? Are critics so irritated/exahusted at having to sit through so many serious (and long) movies in one narrow time-frame that their sheer relief at seeing something short and light makes them over-grateful? (The same thing might have happened with Walk Hard, which the critics liked more than audiences -- possibly because audiences hadn't just sat through There Will Be Blood and The Diving Bell and the Butterfly on consecutive days) I truly don't understand this.

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Postby Big Magilla » Sat Jan 05, 2008 10:34 am

Dreyfuss was hardly an unknown but it was still surprising that he won over Richard Burton on his 7th nomination for Equus and John Travolta, the hot new star of the year in Saturday Night Fever. Travolta was even better known than Dreyfuss at the time, having become a TV star in Welcome Back Kotter. He also had a much publicized romance with much older actress Diana Hyland who played his mother in the 1976 TV movie The Boy in the Plastic Bubble and then died of cancer during the filming of Saturday Night Fever. So the parallels are there - Christie is this year's Burton, Cotillard this year's Travolta and Page this year's Dreyfuss, but the big difference is that Page is a 20 year-old playing a 16 year-old. I just don't see it happening.
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Postby OscarGuy » Sat Jan 05, 2008 9:28 am

Richard Dreyfus had a lot going for him already. First, the early-gray he possessed helped him seem more adult than he really was. He did some really good work in American Graffiti. He also had pivotal roles in several major films prior to The Goodbye Girl (Jaws and The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz) as well as having another prominent 1977 release to bolster his chances (Close Encounters of the Third Time).

Ellen Page really only has Hard Candy as a historical context (and that, IMO, was her breakthrough role). She's had very little other popular exposure and Juno's not a bit like Little Miss Sunshine. The styles of humor are completely different. LMS was more passively funny, contextually. Juno is more actively, verbally funny. It reminds me a good deal of the type of humor used in Welcome to the Dollhouse. LMS seemed more a throwback to the elder days of film where situational humor was more important than verbal dynamics.
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Postby Bog » Sat Jan 05, 2008 9:24 am

Sabin wrote:and an even hotter star whom nobody can say an unkind word about the way her career is going.

I'm more with Sabin and anonymous in this debate, but that statement is going to cause a stir on this board I believe, if not, at least with Penelope

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Postby Mike Kelly » Sat Jan 05, 2008 9:06 am

I agree, Sabin. I really enjoyed the movie, but it did seem that the words coming out of her mouth were often a bit too clever for her 16 yr. old character. I remember feeling the same way when I first saw Richard Dreyfuss in The Goodbye Girl (does anybody really talk like that?). Then again, he did win the Oscar, becoming at that time the youngest Best Actor recipient. Deja vu, all over again? Page would best Marlee Matlin as the youngest Best Actress winner.

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Postby anonymous1980 » Sat Jan 05, 2008 7:38 am

I just saw Ellen Page on Letterman the other night. I think I'm in love. (She's 20 so shut up).

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Postby Sabin » Sat Jan 05, 2008 7:00 am

If 'Little Miss Sunshine' had a laugh past the halfway mark, I certainly wasn't there for it and I saw the goddamn thing twice. 'Juno' may be stylized, a little phony, and a lot uneven but the thing is pretty consistently funny.

I'll say something else: the movie's picking up steam. It had a fantastic weekend, it has a hot director, a hotter writer, and an even hotter star whom nobody can say an unkind word about the way her career is going. She's already developed an almost archetypal "Ellen Page"-role. And by that rationale, I'm sure she is part of the Dakota Fanning School of Acting - her characters are not real people, more conceits of snappy verisimilitude. But right now, she's the freshest thing under 25, a child star with her head on her shoulders and a breakthrough role everybody loves.

What am I saying? Julie Christie might need to watch her back. Say what you will but I'm not joking.
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Postby cam » Fri Jan 04, 2008 1:36 pm

I agree that Juno was an excellent beginning to Page's career. I also did enjoy LMS--with the exception of Toni Collette, as I mentioned at the time. Our mags and papers are full of Ellen Page and Michael Cera--I sometimes feel like I have seen it already, but seeing Juno next Wednesday( it involves a trek), so will be able to compare them better then.


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