Jennifer's Body – Blu-ray Review
By Frankie Dees Jan 24, 2010, 12:53 GMT
Sexy temptress Megan Fox is hotter than hell as Jennifer, a gorgeous, seductive cheerleader who takes evil to a whole new level after she\'s possessed by a sinister demon. Steamy action and gore galore ensue as the male student body succumbs to Jennifer\'s insatiable appetite for human flesh. Now it\'s up to her best friend (Amanda Seyfried) to stop Jennifer\'s reign of terror before it\'s too late! ...more
What do you get when you take a horror script called ‘Jennifer’s Body’ written by the Oscar-winning Diablo Cody and cast the most Googled hot young thing actress of the past couple years, Megan Fox, as the titular Jennifer? Looking at its theatrical performance, apparently a big shrug of the shoulders – but does it warrant a second look at home?
Being a big horror fan myself, I was kind of looking forward to seeing what Diablo Cody would bring to one of her self-proclaimed favorite genres despite my not being a huge fan of her painfully sticky and self-referential ‘Juno’. As if nothing else, I thought it was cool that she would follow up her golden ticket, Oscar-winning gig not with more of the schmaltzy same, but with a down and dirty horror pic meant to evoke some of Cody’s own favorite horror films of the eighties.
And no, she certainly doesn’t come close to the golden age of horror, but mostly because she fell victim to her own clever writing. Her stylized Cody-speak, a stream of pop-culture infused hey-look-at-me catchphrases, annoyed me in ‘Juno’ and it’s just as grating here - if a bit more tolerable only because of the ‘Mean Girls’ tone. If one ignores the needy dialogue, however, there’s definitely a fun little horror movie here to enjoy.
Jennifer is that one hot chick in school that everyone wants to *#%&. She wears skimpy clothes and flirts incessantly but is seemingly unattainable - at least for high school boys. Meet her best friend Needy (Amanda Seyfried), a name which says it all, the polar opposite who is a mousy straight arrow with a nice guy boyfriend. Jennifer and Needy have been friends since childhood and Jennifer is the wild one and Needy keeps out of her trouble - except this one time.
Hearing that a cool ‘city’ grunge band is going to be playing at their little town’s local backwoods bar, Jennifer talks Needy into going as Jennifer has a thing for the city boys. Once there, they catch the eye of the bands lead singer (Adam Brody), who oozes metrosexuality but something is clearly wrong. And not just that the bar burns down. Needy can’t talk Jennifer out of getting in the band’s van and Jennifer comes back…let’s just say bitchier than before.
I’m sure everyone has at least seen some of the marketing and knows that Fox quite literally takes on a killer smile but I hesitate to divulge much more of the plot just in case. As I mentioned before, the Cody-speak threatens to derail the pic at certain points, but director Karyn Kusama (‘Girlfight’ and ‘Aeon Flux’) always managed to keep the film moving before I became too frustrated with the dialogue. I will say that Cody seems spot on with the lengths insecure girls will go to secure friends generally even more insecure than themselves.
A decent tone is struck between the horror and comedy and if ‘Scream’ was a wink-wink throwback to eighties slasher pics, ‘Jennifer’s Body’ is tonally closer to lesser-known eighties gems like ‘Night of the Creeps’ and ‘Night of the Demons’ if not as good. Amanda Seyfried makes an affably nerdy heroine and Fox clearly makes for an appealing villain and handles the sequences, both the horror and comedy, better than I thought she would.
She still has a long way to go before she can claim to be following in Angelina Jolie’s footsteps (the career path she mentioned she wanted) but it’s the perfect role for her at this stage of her career.
So while I think it’s a better film than its current reputation would suggest, I do wish the film was pushed a bit more to truly evoke the eighties. The gore is certainly plentiful but there are too many cutaway shots of our gal going in for the kill only for the camera to cut away. While I don’t want to sound like a sleaze, a film called ‘Jennifer’s Body’ should at the very least give us some sort of nudity…I mean no self-respecting eighties horror pic would stand for not showing a little T&A!
The film features a 1080p AVC 1.85:1 encode that’s befitting a recent theatrical release with sharp detail and vibrant reds that really make the gore pop! It’s a mostly dark film but luckily black levels are fine with no real technical hiccups spotted. The DTS-HD Master Aud track is also good fun with great use of the surround channels and crisp dialogue.
Special features start off with two commentary tracks, the first consisting of Diablo Cody and director Kathryn Kusama and the second track with Kusama only. The first track is the more fun listen with the ladies clearly enjoying their collaboration while the second track consists mostly of Kusama pointing out the differences between the theatrical and the director’s cut both of which are featured on the disc.
We also get about 14 minutes of Deleted Scenes, a 5 minute gag reel, a 15 minute making of, ‘Jennifer’s Body: The Dead Pool’, about 10 minutes of ‘Video Diaries’ shot by various members of the cast and crew, a 1 minute montage of Megan Fox being hot appropriately titled ‘Megan Fox is Hot’, a ‘Megan Fox Peer Pressure PSA, and the meatier half-hour ‘Fox Movie Channel Presents ‘Life After Film School’ with Diablo Cody’ where three film school grads grill Cody about how to break into the business. A Digital Copy rounds things out.
You know what? ‘Jennifer’s Body’ isn’t as bad as I’ve heard. I think there was a bit of backlash involved for both Cody and Fox who probably rub most people the wrong way by becoming really successful a little too quick and in Fox’s case by doing little more than bending over a Camaro.
But, heck, she’s clearly not trying to steal roles from Meryl Streep so let’s cut her a break. Admittedly, the Cody-speak gets a bit tiring but there’s still a bloody and sexy good time to be had if one lowers their expectations and sets aside any biases.
Visit the DVD database for more information.
FROM THE WEB
Further Reading on M&CAdam Brody Biography -
Adam Brody Links - M&C is not responsible for the content in external sitesAmanda Seyfried Biography -
Amanda Seyfried Links - M&C is not responsible for the content in external sitesKaryn Kusama Biography - Megan Fox Biography -
Megan Fox Links - M&C is not responsible for the content in external sites
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