I was pretty late to the party in terms of seeing it the first time.

Here’s the “professional” version of a review. Amanda is right, Juno was simply too mature and clever and funny and smart and more or less perfect for the first half of the movie. It’s a bit hard to swallow.

But unlike Amanda and her fellow pros, I don’t view the movie through the abortion lens, nor do I subtract from its score for presenting a child as the font of sense in an adult world.

Here’s the boring, inarticulate amateur critic’s take: My idea of a good movie is pretty simply summarized by this question: Did the movie move me in the direction the filmmakers wanted to move me, and by how much? In Juno’s case, the answer is a strong thumbs up.

What I especially liked about the film is that it dealt with real family deals in a the way that most sane families deal with them. The movie is, despite Juno’s first-half precociousness–and let’s not forget that some kids actually are sort of precocious and remarkable, which I thought the movie made plausible by the stylistic parenting of Allison Janney and J.K. Simmons–a pretty interesting slice of life. And to me the overarching theme was not one at all about “choice,” but more about two traditionally “different” personalities finding love and happiness and all that good shit, blah blah blah, and those people being smart and kind and harmless and loving, even if they are a bit weird, “traditionally.”

And who isn’t?

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