Juno was highly recommended to me by a friend of mine. He even praised it so much by going to the length of calling it “the Little Miss Sunshine of 2007”. I had my hopes high and my expectations were soaring. And Juno meets every single one of them, and even manages to excel at certain points. Love, life, romance –all of that, in a pregnant teenager, who loves to strum the six strings and is the smartest woman (Yes woman) I have ever seen onscreen: Juno is all of that. And the movie envelopes all these aspects in a wonderful feel-good way, which doesn’t seem at all artificial. Juno is all but real, and still somehow brings that innocent smile on your face, similar to the one when you watch Dexter’s Laboratory, not that this has anything to do with science, well anatomy yes. Ughh!! You’re making me confused.
I can just spend hours gushing about the “awesomeness” of the performances and the movie as a whole. But well that would put my writing skills to the test. I’d rather tell you that Juno puts a strange effect in you. For the uninitiated,as Juno puts it, “It all started with a chair”. Juno is about a teenager, Juno MacGuff (played excellently by Ellen Page) who is impregnated by her high school friend, athlete Paulie Bleeker( Michael Cera, the Superbad guy). Juno, with the help of her supportive parents, goes ahead with the pregnancy, more so because she finds it noble (read Cool) to give away the child for adoption to a childless couple. She finds the perfect couple only to realize that isn’t as cool and as planned as she thought it would be. She faces life’s twists for the second time, and yet, remains calm and composed and lives through it with a smile. And all of this, yes, all of this, has been portrayed with minimal melodramatic elements, and yet doesn’t at all feel like emotionless puppets playing the part. Juno reacts when she is low, but always gets up to find life and love.
I know, some might find the “moral” and intense theme of teenage pregnancy and its after effects being dealt here with shallowness and probably exploited in the interest of making it look cool. But I would rather disagree with it. The movie doesn’t promote teenage pregnancy. What it does is show how life can be so beautiful, when you have the support of the ones whom you love, and how even the hardest of things can be turned into Happiness. If you were to define Juno in a movie genre, it would be termed as an Indie-comedy which takes on teenage pregnancy and abortion. But to me, the comedy comes not through ridiculing the parts which you’d generally associate with these themes, but with the little simplicities explored, not exploited. But then, there would be some who’d think otherwise. What I’d like to say is “Sonic Youth is just noise, and so are you”.Go watch Juno and befriend her. She is just awesome. It is tough for Ellen Page to win an Oscar for this one, but then she definitely deserves a standing ovation for this one.I just wish I were at high school with a Juno as my friend, the smart, independent, cute, refreshing and fun to be around and yeah! one who knows her music.