Bweinh! Goes to the Movies: Chick Flicks

February 5, 2008, 2:00 pm; posted by
Filed under Articles, Connie, Featured, Movies  | 7 Comments

As a preface, I am in no way officially recommending any particular movie to anyone, just sharing the experiences of my last two visits to the cinema with my girls (Karen [24], my soon-to-be daughter-in-law, and my daughters Rose [21] and Sarah [17]).

In mid-December, I heard Rose say sheepishly, “I kinda wanna see that…” I looked up to catch the end of a trailer for Juno, a new teen pregnancy movie, pitched as a smart, funny, gets-into-your-heart-and-head kind of film. As Pentecostal Christians, we generally don’t support many teen sex movies, which is probably why she sounded sheepish. I watched the last few scenes with little interest, but tucked it away. Around the same time, 27 Dresses trailers were on every day, constantly reminding me of our two upcoming weddings. My girls and I had already made a date to see that one; I was hoping it might give me some ideas for the reception and rehearsal dinner.

But frankly, Dresses was forgetful and predictable, giving me plenty of time to check out gowns and cakes, and take mental notes on bouquet arrangements, centerpieces and lighting. I mean, James Marden was okay, but he’s no Mark Ruffalo. You knew who the girl was going home with — there was no “OH NO!!!!” moment like in How To Lose a Guy in 10 Days or Just Like Heaven. Discussing the movie afterwards, we quickly ran out of things to say.

Reviews began trickling in on Juno. “Fast-paced, witty dialogue. Candid, funny, real.” It began to sound like the Gilmore Girls, and we sure missed that show. We miss a lot of things; stupid writer’s strike. When the Oscar nominations were announced and Juno stuck gold, I fired off texts to the girls and a date was on. I remained afraid it might portray teenage pregnancy in a sympathetic way or trample over our values — and I wondered if it could stand up to all the hype.

Well, Juno delivered! Sorry, no pun intended. I think the girls enjoyed it from the start, and I liked it too. For those who don’t know, Juno is the story of a pregnant 16-year-old girl who decides to keep the child, after visiting a hilariously unsympathetic abortion clinic, and gives the baby up for adoption to a young couple who cannot have children. The parents she chooses are as human as the rest of her world (she finds them through a Pennysaver ad!), and she must decide what to do when the deal doesn’t work out as she expects.

Roger Ebert’s review says he found a lot of “unexpected laughter.” That happened to us a lot too; there were jokes everywhere, especially during the serious scenes, like when Juno tells her dad and stepmom about her pregnancy. This is real life — at least it’s real life at our house. I felt at home. The dialogue was two parts intelligence, two parts humor and (unfortunately) one part mild vulgarity, teenage-girl style.

My favorite parts were when Juno went to her parents and found support, wisdom and love. No anger or resignation, no “Here we go again,” but true wisdom and support. Her father was not a stereotypical doofus — he has lived and learned, and helps her to process her confusion. He’s the one who teaches her what love really is, and makes it possible for her to make the right decisions in the end. Her stepmother is not a “witch” — she’s a loving, fiercely protective mom, who sacrifices a lot for her stepdaughter, but isn’t above complaining about it during an argument. The girls and I found a lot to discuss after this one. We learned some new vocabulary words too — but of course we won’t be using them…

I was uncomfortable with the vulgarity level, especially because the parental audience at the Sunday matinee did not honor the PG-13 rating, and chose to bring their small children. For the love of all that’s good, hire a babysitter and keep your young kids at home — especially the 8 to 10-year-olds!

Guys, you could do worse than to occasionally stumble into a chick flick with your special someone. You might actually discover something about your relationship. You could share a laugh or an inside joke to remember for years to come — who knows? I don’t know if Rambo or Die Hard or The Singing Killing Barber could do that for you — but, of course, I could be wrong.


Comments

7 Comments to “Bweinh! Goes to the Movies: Chick Flicks”

  1. Tom on February 5th, 2008 3:37 pm

    I don’t think you can say “barren” anymore. Infertile, impregnable, or inconceivable are much more politically correct.

  2. Steve on February 5th, 2008 3:39 pm

    “Barren” was the word choice of the editor; it replaced a more lengthy and awkward sentence phrasing. I will change it to reflect your sensitivities.

  3. Rose on February 5th, 2008 6:10 pm

    I’m totally not 21.

    As I’m reminded every weekend when I try to sneak into Backstreets.

    I’m just kidding.

    I don’t have to sneak – they don’t care how old I am.

  4. Tom on February 5th, 2008 7:42 pm

    My sincerest thanks. I still would’ve preferred impregnable.

  5. Djere on February 5th, 2008 11:09 pm

    “Lennox is a conqueror? No. I’m Alexander, he’s no Alexander. I’m the best ever. There’s never been anybody as ruthless. I’m Sonny Liston. I’m Jack Dempsey, there’s no one like me – I’m from their cloth. There’s no one that can match me. My style is impetuous. My defense is impregnable, and I’m just ferocious. I want your heart. I want to eat his children. Praise be to Allah!”

  6. David on February 7th, 2008 9:19 am

    A few weeks ago I gave up an NFL playoff game to watch “A Walk to Remember” with my wife. Yeah, I know, that movie is like 10 years old or something, but I should get some credit for that somewhere.

  7. Connie Maxon on February 8th, 2008 1:13 pm

    I thought you were going to say The Notebook, which would clean up so well on tv. It’s more “our age”. Try to see that one together. But still, Juno’s pretty good….

    Although I do hereby grant you your points…double bonused because of the football aspect (tripled if she gave up sci-fi).

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