JENNIFER'S BODY "Hell is a teenage girl." So go the first five words of Karyn Kusama's tart horror comedy, setting a tone as part adolescent slasher flick, part satire of said adolescent slasher flick. Penned by Oscar winner Diablo Cody and powered by her sharp-tongued dialogue, the film runs on the angst of teenage hormones spiked with Red Bull. Think Juno traipsing through the halls of Laguna Beach High, add the camp of Freddy Krueger, and you've got Jennifer's Body.
After chasing one too many bad boys, Jennifer (Megan Fox, proving capable of handling more than '80s action figures) ends up with a demonic curse: She must feed on pimple-faced teens to keep her radiant skin and luscious locks intact. When she's full, she's got the glow of a Cosmo cover girl. When she's hungry—well, you could probably find her cracked out in one of those Meth ads.
The only conscience standing in the boy-eating cheerleader's way is her BFF and the film's narrator, Needy (Mamma Mia's Amanda Seyfried). Always second fiddle to Jennifer's popularity and beauty, Needy struggles between her devotion to her friend and her need for independence. "Sandbox love never dies," she says of her infatuation with Jennifer. As more boys are found dismembered, Needy becomes suspicious of her friend's impervious apathy. So she does what any go-getter would do in this situation—marches to the school library's occult section and searches for a way to stop the body count.
Jennifer's Body succeeds in playing over-the-top scenarios alongside typical teenage melodrama, giving more depth and intrigue to both. The playful banter successfully moves it out of the teenybopper realm, making it more relevant to those who survived their teenage years rather than those who are living them. But screenwriter Cody proves she can hop genres and still keep things more entertaining and fresh than most of what's oozing out of Hollywood at the moment. In the same way Tina Fey captures the humor of the always-slighted, never-righted and self-deprecated, Cody relives the highs and lows of our teens to do what we always wanted but never dared to our high-school years—shove a stake through their beating heart. (Now playing) Sara Havens
ALLOY ORCHESTRA PERFORMS ALFRED HITCHCOCK'S BLACKMAIL We would be remiss if we didn't remind you once more that the Alloy Orchestra, the three-man ensemble widely regarded as the world's best live accompanists to silent film, will be setting up for one night only at The Belcourt this Thursday night. They'll perform their own score to Alfred Hitchcock's crackling 1929 thriller Blackmail, made just on the cusp of sound recording in cinema (and shot in both silent and sound). The film is good enough on its own to warrant a look; with the Cambridge-based trio providing a nerve-jangling live soundtrack of clattering percussion and sonic surprises, this is easily one of the week's must-see local events. Tickets are $20 or $15 for Belcourt members. For more information, see belcourt.org. (Shows 7:30 p.m. Sept. 24 at The Belcourt) JIM RIDLEY
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