December 30, 2007

Last night, I went to see the new movie Juno with several of my friends. I remember about a month or so ago, reading the beginning of a review about this movie. I got about as far as “pregnant teen” and put the magazine down, thinking, “Oh dear Lord. Another ‘this movie’ll teach ’em a lesson after-school-special about a pregnant teen and the trials and tribulations she faces in our harshly judgmental society!'”

I am so happy to have been wrong about it!

Juno is sixteen years old when she discovers that she is pregnant. She is a bit of an offbeat character, but a smart girl who weighs all of her options before deciding to give her baby up for adoption. Then she tells her parents, who, surprisingly, don’t freak out. Well, they do freak out, but not in a totally scary “We’re going to kill you and ground you for life” kind of way. They end up being extremely supportive of their daughter even though she has made a mistake, and they help her through the situation.

Another thing that was really great was the way the writer portrayed Juno’s ordeal at high school: they way the news spread like wildfire, and the rumors about her pregnancy. It also showed the way a pregnant teen is treated by other people at school in a very realistic way. My favorite thing about the movie though, is that Juno faces her situation with a level head and doesn’t let the opinions of the haters get her down. And, against all odds, she remains best friends with the father of her baby, even after the very realistic arguments and frustrations that occur between them.

So, not only is Juno a movie that deals with the subject of teenage pregnancy in a very non-typical manner — I mean, Juno is treated like a human being, with feelings, and not as a terrible outcast who has made the single biggest mistake of her life — but it is also really funny! One great comic cameo is made by Rainn Wilson (of The Office), and the writing in general is very irreverent and witty. We laughed so hard that we missed chunks of dialogue!

Juno is rated PG-13, and is playing locally.

Have you seen this movie? If so, what did you think? How does it tie into the news of other pregnant teens in recent headlines?  Leave us a comment; let us know what you think!


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