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Genre: Dark Comedy
Premise: A sex-addicted former car magnate tries to put his life back together.
About: Solitary Man stars Michael Douglas, Mary-Louise Parker, Susan Sarandon, Jenna Fischer, Danny DeVito, Jesse Eisenberg, and is directed by David Levien & Brian Koppelman. The sex-addicted character of Ben is one that Douglas understands well as he was diagnosed with sex addiction back in 1990 (take that you copycatter David Duchovny). The film was produced by Paul Schiff and Steven Soderbergh.
Writer: Brian Koppelman

Looking a lot like the old Michael Douglas.

As the Tornonto Film Festival gears up for its return, a lot of future indie darlings are prepping and hoping to get their name out there with a great screening. Festivals are like Grand Slam tournaments for indie projects (tennis reference) and they know that a good showing can be the difference between a wide indie release and a debut on your local video store shelf. Festival titans like Werner Herzog, Alejandro Amenabar, Lars Von Trier, and Terry Gilliam will be vying for your indie hearts and trying to generate buzz. But one movie that no one seems to be talking about is Solitary Man, the much less publicized starring comeback of Michael Douglas (he’ll also be starring in Oliver Stone’s Wall Street sequel). Well, if the script is any indication, this is a movie that should not only be on everybody’s radar, but could nab Douglas an Oscar nod if he takes advantage of what’s on the page.

Ben may be 60 years old, but he doesn’t act a day over 30. Everything he does, from dying his hair to the way he dresses, represents a man desperately trying to hold onto his youth. Back in the day, Ben was a shark. The guy owned one of the biggest car dealerships in New Jersey and was such a high roller, even the mayor knew who he was. But greed and carelessness resulted in some sketchy financial practices and Ben lost it all. It’s been some years now and Ben’s running out of his ‘fuck you’ money. He needs to make something happen fast or this “everything’s fine” façade he’s put up will fall away faster than a Cameron Crowe script review.

Jesse Eisenberg prepping for The Social Network.

Which explains why he’s with Jordan, a 40 year-old divorcee who’s hot enough to land a role on Desperate Housewives. But Ben has no interest in Jordan. Ben has no interest in any relationships. It so happens that Jordan’s ex-husband runs in some high-class circles and Ben needs funding for his brand new car dealership – the business that’s going to put him back in the game. Ben slyly convinces Jordan to set up a meeting between the two so he can do what he does best: Sell.

Ben is not thrilled then when Jordan tells him that as long as he’s going up that way, he can take her daughter Allyson with him and introduce her to the Dean of the nearby college she wants to attend. Since it’s Ben’s Alma Mater, he can put in a good word for her. Neither Ben or Allyson is hip to this idea *at all*. Allyson is quite the bitch and it so happens she’s actually caught Ben cheating on her mom. Not that she cares. She hates Ben. But she hates her mom even more. The two actually agree to fake the trip and lie to the mom afterwards. But at the last second Ben grows a conscience and decides to do the right thing.

I have no idea what part Jenna Fischer is playing (probably Douglas’ daughter). I just wanted to include a picture of her.

Once at the school, Ben both watches over and tries to stay out of the way of Allyson, as she seeks out one of those memorable self-destructive college visit nights (come on, we’ve all been there). In the process he meets uber-nerd Daniel (played by Jesse Eisenberg) and teaches him how to use car salesman tricks to talk women into sleeping with him. The two actually develop a bit of a friendship, and Ben watches proudly as Daniel emerges from his shell. Later at a bar, he spots Allyson talking to some douchebag, goes to save her, and the two actually find that they have more in common than they’d like to admit. One thing leads to another and before we know it the two are back at the hotel doing all sorts of self-destructive things.

Yes, Ben just slept with his girlfriend’s daughter. Have you stopped reading yet?

Here’s the thing. This doesn’t play out the way you think it will. At first glance it seems like Ben is the predator. But the next morning, we realize that he was actually the prey. For the first time in his life *he’s* been fucked. In a little karmic justice, Ben desperately tries to court Allyson, only to be fed a line he’s fed a lifetime of women: “Last night was fun. But that’s all it was.” Once home, Ben continues to desperately court Allyson. She realizes the only way to get him off her back is to do the unthinkable: She tells her mother she slept with him.

Bye bye car dealership!!!

And pretty much bye bye everything else. Ben’s life comes crashing down. He loses the financing. He loses his home. He’s forced to beg his ex-wife for money. He has no friends to turn to because he’s burned every bridge he’s crossed – usually for a one night stand. And finally, here, this man, clinging to the last rung of respectability, doesn’t have anywhere to turn.

Ben is a sad sad character. You actually wince while reading him. Every scene is an exercise in saying, “No. No. Don’t do it!” And then he does. There’s a scene late in the movie, after Ben has helped Daniel land a beautiful girl who he ends up falling in love with. And they’re all hanging out at the bar and Daniel goes to the bathroom and it’s just Ben and the girlfriend. And you close your eyes and say, “Please. Please don’t do it.” But when you open them, there he is, asking her if she’s really satisfied with Daniel. Telling her that all he wants is one night. Daniel will never know. It’s sad and it’s disgusting and yet it’s incredibly compelling.

You see, despite it all, we’re rooting for Ben. He’s like Darth Vadar. We want him to change. We want him to see the light because somewhere deep inside him, we know there’s good. There’s a great final scene where he actually gets this opportunity. On one side is the hope of an honest life, and on the other, the mistakes that define his past. It’s a clever little moment with an ending that brought a smile to my face.

But hey, I’m not going to pretend like this is for everyone. Women, in particular, will probably find this character unbearable. But we’ve all known a Ben, maybe even have been him for awhile, and for that reason it’s a fascinating character study. Can’t wait to see what the reaction to this is coming out of the festival.

[ ] What the hell did I just read?
[ ] barely kept my interest
[xx] worth the read
[ ] impressive
[ ] genius

What I learned: When you have this repulsive of a character, you need to give us something so we can root for him. If he’s 100% bad, we’ll hate the guy. Koppleman achieves this by giving Ben a grandson who he loves more than the world. In the scenes where the two are together, they get along so well and Ben is so happy to be with him, it allows us to see that good side. It helps us sympathize and gives us hope that he can become a better person.

Genre: Period Romance
Premise: Set (I think) in early 20th Century Paris, a penniless journalist worms his way into the city’s upper crust, seducing all the ladies in his path.
About: Robert Pattinson is in it. What more do you need to know?
Writer: Rachel Bennette (based off the short story by Guy de Maupassant)

Would you trust this man with your wife?

Oh R_Patz. Where art thou R_Patz? What the *hell* are you doing R_Patz?? Did you even read the script you signed up for? No you didn’t, did you. You so did not read it. But you were interested in making this movie R_Patz weren’t you? Yes you were. You were interested in making this movie because the coverage said you’d be spending the majority of the 120 minutes banging three of the hottest actresses in Hollywood. Yes you were R_Patz. Don’t you lie to me Mr. Sharp Fangs. We both know the truth. Because here you were Mr. Twilight Vampire Man thinking you would get the pick of the litter. Three sultry celebrities you could take back to your coffin every night after filming. Real sex after fake sex. Menage et quatro. Be honest with me R_Patz. That’s why you signed up for this movie, isn’t it?

Well because you didn’t read the script, let me break it down for you. Your character, Georges, is a bit of a low life. He’s slumming it up in Paris circa sometime-a-long-time ago (the author chose not to disclose the actual year because she hates me). Apparently Georges used to be a soldier, but the only thing he fights now are the gargantuan cockroaches that try to share a blanket with him in his tiny attic apartment.

Low and behold though, wouldn’t it be Georges Porgies luck that he runs into an old friend while trying to spend his last two shillings on a low-class whore. The friend, Charles, has since become very rich, running his own newspaper, The Parisian. Charles offers George a job at the paper, despite the fact that Georges has never written anything in his entire life.

The job and Charles’ friendship allow him a tiny opening into Paris’ upper crust, which he exploits to the nth degree. You see Charles’ and his two best buddies just happen to be married to the three most beautiful women in France. There’s Madeline, Charles’ impeccably smart and beautiful wife. There’s Clotilde, the slutty one. And then there’s Luc Rousset, the innocent Redhead. I think we all know where this is going, right?

Yes, Georges begins to seduce the women one-by-one with varying degrees of success. He starts off with Madeline, who he has the strongest connection to, but she thwarts his advances and claims, “I will never be your lover.” So he moves on to the easiest target, Clotilde, who is so slutified that she actually buys the two a bang bungalow, a special place exclusively for their daily bang. But this is not enough for Georges. He craves excess. And when Charles succumbs to some distant cousin of the Bubonic Plauge (an early version of swine flu maybe?) Georges swoops in and marries his true love, Madeline.

Oh but if it were that easy. After marrying Madeline, he learns that she just isn’t that interested in him. In fact, she pulls out the virtual chastity belt and basically tells him “You do your thing, I’ll do mine.” So what does Georges do in return? What do you think he does! He makes a move on Luc Rousset (who’s a woman – I know, it’s confusing) and starts a dangerous fling in the bang bungalow that Clotilde bought specifically for them. If there was a Renaissance version of Cheaters, this shit would be ripe for the season finale.

Because Georges is a moron, he doesn’t realize that you never cheat on anyone with a girl with red hair! Because when a red hair shows up in your bed, you can’t explain it away. “Uhh, maybe your hair is turning red?” Doesn’t work. I’ve tried it. So Clotilde leaves him. He leaves Luc Rousset. And Madeline won’t even return any of his texts. Is this Bel Ami or The Real Housewives of Atlanta?

Anyway, Georges ends up just as poor and helpless as where he started in the movie, before making a last-second power play and marrying Luc Rousset’s daughter of all people (who up til this point hadn’t even spoken a line). It was such a bizarre turn of events I sent my life size poster of Robert Pattinson to the closet for a time out. Luc Rousset plays the least important role of the three ladies, so what they were trying to say by having Georges marry her daughter is a complete mystery to me.

There were some good moments tucked into Bel Ami. The relationship between R_Patz and Madeline was interesting, as she tended to treat him like he treated everyone else. But outside of that, this felt like a salacious excuse for a bunch of smelly French sex.

[ ] What the hell did I just read?
[x] barely kept my interest

[ ] worth the read

[ ] impressive

[ ] genius

What I learned: All joking aside, if you have an unmarketable screenplay, try to target actors who like taking chances. Very few A-list actors would take on a role like this and therefore Bel Ami was destined to wither in screenplay obscurity. But Pattinson seems interested in trying new things (he’s also playing a Cherokee Indian in Unbound Captives) so a script like Bel Ami is something he might actually read. The owners of the material took a chance and it paid off. As writers, you’re always looking to add to the “package” of your screenplay with actors and directors. Even if you have a slow non-mainstream piece, if you’ve done your homework and know a few actors who might be interested in your offbeat independent film (Dicaprio with The Low Dweller, Pattinson with Unbound Captives, Nicolas Cage with Leaving Las Vegas), you might find your script going from unwanted to the hottest screenplay in town. Now getting to those actors is another thing altogether. But it’s another avenue to pursue.

p.s. If you’d like to read about a much better Robert Pattinson project, go here.

EDIT – FURTHER THOUGHTS ON BEL AMI: So I’m kind of getting deluged with e-mails from Twilight fans saying I didn’t give the script a fair chance and that I was snooty in my review. They also want more details. So let me say a couple more things.

The thing I liked best about the script was the character of Madeline. She informs Georges from the beginning of their marriage that he can never question her, and cannot be jealous. She is her own woman and expects to be treated as such. Within weeks Georges begins coming home to suspicious visits by an older man named The Comte. It doesn’t take George long to start suspecting that something’s going on between The Comte and his wife. But a healthy dose of denial convinces him his wife can’t possibly be interested in this old bag of bone. Madeline’s icy response to his desperate attempts at closeness finally level the playing field of a man who’s been playing by his own rules without consequences. As they’re both pretty despicable people, watching their marriage deteriorate is quite fun.

The character of Luc Rousset is also quite funny, as she clings desperately to Georges after even a whisper of an interest from him. As he has sex with her the first time, she screams out, “I love you! I love you! I love you!” over and over again. Man, and I thought my ex was clingy. When his world starts crumbling around him, he literally kicks Luc Rousset to the curb, telling her she makes him sick and that he never even had the slightest interest in her. To add insult to injury, he ends up marrying her daughter.

There’s also an uninteresting sub-plot about the men at The Parisian taking advantage of France’s invasion of Morocco – buying up a lot of businesses so that when the country officially becomes theirs, they’ll all be rich. They purposefully exclude Georges from the club, ensuring that he’ll end up with nothing, which he becomes extremely angry about – despite the fact that he’s been fucking all their wives behind their backs.

A few people have asked me about the dialogue. I have a very simple philosophy about dialogue. Unless we’re talking comedy, the more invisible the dialogue, the better. The only time I notice dialogue is when it’s really atrocious or really over-the-top. I dislike both. When dialogue flows with the story organically, it should feel like real people talking, and in that sense, Bel Ami does a good job. The dialogue was smooth and realistic, even with the extravagances the script sometimes took.

If you have questions, please ask in the comments section instead of e-mailing me as that way, future readers can have their questions answered as well.

No link (in case you were curious - :)

Genre: Sci-Fi
Premise: A hotshot politician meets a beautiful ballet dancer only to experience unseen forces fighting to keep them apart.
About: Adapted from a Philip K. Dick story, Universal and Media Rights Capital (Bruno) will be producing. Matt Damon and Emily Blunt to star. George Nolfi, who wrote Timeline, Ocean’s 12, and The Sentinal, adapted and will make The Adjustment Bureau his directorial debut. Nolfi is also producing along with Chris Moore, Michael Hackett and Bill Carraro. Damon will be getting a 20% first-dollar-gross backend. Yikes.
Writer: George Nolfi

Damon is hoping to get a slightly higher backend return than he did on Gerry.

If you were following me on Twitter yesterday, you’d know that I was super excited about a particular script I was reading. Up until page 32, I thought I had a “genius” on my hands. I purposefully went into it blind and as the story unfolded, I found myself inching closer and closer to the screen. I was actually on the edge of my seat…for a screenplay. As the setup came to a close however, I began to realize this wasn’t going to be the script I wanted it to be. The sci-fi element that made the story so unique and interesting, faded into the background in favor of a heavy love story. Had I prepped myself for that, I would’ve been more tolerant. But I couldn’t help thinking of the potential this kind squandered.

Congressman David Norris, 33, is running for Senate. He’s kind of like the white version of Obama. He’s good-looking. He inspires young people. He gives great speeches. His only fault is that he’s a little *too* honest when discussing issues. And on the eve of what should’ve been a blowout victory, he himself gets blown out. Looking like Andy Roddick after this year’s Wimbledon (but come on – did anyone really think he was going to win?), David must find solace in the second place trophy. How did this happen? Where did he go wrong?

As David preps for his “loser” speech, he meets a beautiful rambunctious woman named Elise. She and David gravitate towards each other like sugar and cinnamon, immediately lost in one another’s eyes. Words, smiles, and laughs are exchanged. It’s as if some unknown entity has put the rest of the world on hold so that these two can experience a perfect moment in time. To say these two are soul mates would be the understatement of the millennium.

As of this second, I am the world’s biggest Emily Blunt fan.

David then gives an amazing consolation speech inspired by Elise. It’s the kind of speech that gets played over and over again on CNN and makes him not only the frontrunner for a Senate seat in three years, but many people’s pick as our future president of the United States. But all this is insignificant to David. All he cares about is finding Elise again. He must find Elise.

As it would happen, the very next day (as David is preparing for his first day of work at his new hedge fund job) David drops into Starbucks to pick up a coffee. But we push up above and meet a mysterious group of men on a rooftop, overlooking the city. The men speak in hushed tones. Something about preparing for a coffee spill. One of the men, Harry, is assigned to the “case”. We cut to David, coming out of the coffee shop, and then over to Harry, who’s supposed to do…something. But he’s drifted off and missed his cue. Which means David catches a bus. And when he catches that bus, he can’t believe his luck. Cause sitting there right in the middle is the world’s most perfect vision. Elise. The two share a shocked smile. But Harry’s not smiling. Neither are the rest of the mysterious men. Apparently, David’s just done something terrible.

The mysterious men are thumbing through something called the “Handbook”. Not to be confused with Facebook. It’s full of extremely complicated diagrams inside, lines twisting and turning in every which direction. And then, to our utter shock, the lines start moving. They disconnect, slide and extend, reconnecting with other lines. It’s this movement that seems to have the mysterious group of men concerned. Something is happening that shouldn’t be. And David appears to be the cause of it.

Elise gives David her number and he’s holding onto that thing for dear life. Off to his new job he goes, a skip in his step and an “I’m in love” smile on his face. When David steps into the building, we notice an immediate emptiness. There’s a security guard there but he doesn’t pay much notice to David. David heads upstairs and passes by his secretary. But when he says hi, she doesn’t say anything back. She just sits there. That’s when David takes a closer look at her. Her face appears to be…frozen. David understandably freaks out and runs into his partner’s office only to find…that his partner is frozen too! Three men (the mysterious men) surround him, adjusting some sort of metal contraption on the side of his head. They turn and spot David, and David turns and runs.

But when the world’s frozen and people are inserting metal contraptions into other people’s heads, do you really think running’s going to help? The men have an ability to leap from door to door, covering large distances in split-seconds and before David knows it, he’s cornered, caught and drugged. When he wakes up, the men are standing over him in a warehouse. After some debate, the decide to tell him the truth.

Behind our world are planners, fate-spinners who guide and encourage us with lost keys, spilled coffee, phone calls and texts – anything to keep us on “the Plan.” The Plan is our preordained destiny in this world. It must be adhered to. If too many people stray from The Plan, the foundation of humanity itself will crumble. So these men are here to help keep things on point. Harry was supposed to be there to enforce a coffee spill with David so he missed that bus. But David got on the bus. And because he got on the bus, something very terrible happened.

Mr. Philip K. Dick

David was never supposed to see Elise again. Apparently if her and David were to get together, a rift in The Plan so huge would occur, it would make that stuff they talk about in Ghostbusters seem like a bad night of drinking. They tell David that whatever he does, he cannot speak to this girl again. To drive home their point, they take out her number from David’s wallet and burn it! They then inform him if he speaks about this puppeteering backworld to anyone, they will be forced to erase his memory. Which will essentially make him a vegetable.


David is once again on the verge of becoming Senator. But all the life has been seeped out of him. His happiness is tied inexorably to his inability to find Elise. He still takes the same bus every day in hopes of seeing her again. But the Planners have been behind the scenes, manipulating everything to make sure they stay apart. David knows this but keeps trying. And then, impossibly, he sees her again. This time, he will not leave her. This time, he will not let her out of his sight. But The Bureau has other plans.

And there you have The Adjustment Bureau. David tries desperately to be with Elise. The Bureau tries desperately to keep them apart. Is it any good? Well, that depends on if you want David and Elise to be together. If you do, you’ll root for Mr. Damon to break through walls to be with her. If not, you’ll likely close this puppy by page 40. It’s always difficult to create a storyline where two people fall desperately in love. You basically have to have them fawning over each other within seconds of meeting, and the slim timeframe makes it hard to develop any real conflict in their relationship. Which leaves us with pure love. And what movie have you seen where two people dote over each other for 120 minutes that’s actually any good? Romeo And Juliet? Even The Notebook had the two fighting just as much as they proclaimed their love for each other.

I think I have a problem with adapted Philip K. Dick material in general. It always feels like 3/4 of a good idea. The setup is usually solid, but the idea can rarely support an entire screenplay. In “Bureau” there were times when it all felt a little too silly. David and Elise share a lovely lunch together while The Bureau stands 100 feet away and flings little pieces of fate at them to try and keep them apart. Kind of like less-menacing versions of Final Destination. A text message to Elise telling her her ballet recital has been moved up. Sending David’s campaign manager over to encourage David to get his speech ready. I’m trying to figure out if that would actually be compelling onscreen or just really really stupid. It’s a tough call.

Luckily there’s nothing out there quite like The Adjustment Bureau. Of course it borrows from other movies (more than a few times I thought of The Matrix) but overall the feeling is a unique one, which no doubt is why this project has caught the attention of such a big star like Damon. The themes of fate and choice are prevalent, and it’s hard not to find those interesting even in a conventional story.

If only the 129 page screenplay were a good 19 pages shorter, this could’ve played out more urgently – always advantageous when you’re dealing with sci-fi. And like I said, the innovation in the first act doesn’t extend into the rest of the story. One good idea is never enough for these flicks. You need two or three. There’s a final act chase that has David teleporting from doorway to doorway throughout New York just like The Bureau does, but it feels safe as opposed to innovative. I felt like a father consoling a kid after he lost a nailbiter of a soccer game. “Almost,” I wanted to say, as I patted him on the back.

But there’s no denying that there’s something about The Adjustment Bureau. I’m sure they’ve already engaged in rewrites that will render some of these issues moot. And Emily Blunt being super-hot doesn’t hurt things. The Adjustment Bureau wasn’t bad.

[ ] What the hell did I just read?
[ ] barely kept my interest

[x] worth the read

[ ] impressive

[ ] genius

What I learned: When you have two people falling in love, you want to avoid having them spout back and forth how much they love each other for 120 minutes. For an example of *why* you don’t want to do this, please watch “Star Wars Attack Of The Clones.” In The Adjustment Bureau, Rolfi makes use of a writer’s best friend in this circumstance: sarcasm. Not only does sarcasm keep the conversations light and funny, but it feels a lot more like real life. Who out there is constantly blathering, “You’re the most beautiful person I’ve ever met in my life. I love you like air.” Why not instead, “Nice shoes. Where’d you find those? Wal-Mart?” We know it’s a joke. We know Elise really likes David. So the line ends up being cute and interesting. That’s not to say there won’t be moments in your screenplay where your characters say what they feel (“I love you”) but you want to make those moments the exception and not the rule. — Sarcasm is just one of many tools you can use to stave off those dreaded cringe-worthy lovey-dovey moments. Use it judiciously.

Genre: Teen Horror
Synopsis: A high school cheerleader becomes a flesh-eating spawn of the devil.
About: This is the much talked about follow-up to Diablo Cody’s Oscar winning screenplay, Juno. Megan Fox to star. Coming out in September of this year.
Writer: Diablo Cody

Diablo’s Body

There’s a real temptation here to tear this to pieces. There’s a temptation to lol at the sound bytes of dialogue that are way too cute to be uttered by any human being, regardless of age. There’s a temptation to call Diablo Cody’s career a sham, based on her decision to to do what every other wanna-be celebrity does to get famous: take off their clothes. But one thing is very clear: Diablo Cody is making millions of dollars writing screenplays. I am not. Well, not yet anyway. The point is, she’s clearly doing something right. For that reason, I’m going to pretend that I never saw the first 30 minutes of Juno, that I never heard the phrases “You’re preggo with my eggo” or “Oh my blog”, and I’m going to do what nobody in this world has been able to do since Juno was released. I’m going to judge Diablo Cody’s screenplay objectively.

See here’s something I’ve got to give Diablo credit for. Cause when I first heard this was going to be her follow-up to Juno I thought, “You’re stupid.” But the more I thought about it, the more I realized how genius it was. Horror gets bad reviews no matter what. Doesn’t matter if Sucksy McSuckums writes it or Quentin Tarantino. Critics bash horror. So by writing a horror film, you effectively exonerate yourself from criticism. Cause when the bad reviews come in you can simply throw up your arms and say, “What I am supposed to do?? Critics hate horror.” And thus Diablo Cody doesn’t have the pressure of following up an Oscar effort. Although I don’t particularly like Diablo’s writing style, I admit she’s one smart chicky.

Enough of this shit. Let’s talk about Jennifer’s body. Now as some of you may know by now, Jennifer is being played by super-douche Donna’s boyfriend from the old 90210’s current ex-girlfriend Megan Fox. Jennifer is your typical perfect high school cheerleader princess. She’s got the body, she’s got the face, and she’s got the attitude. So it’s a little confusing why her best friend is Needy, the artsy girl who works at the school paper (no not “needy”, but her actual name is Needy, for real). A little bit of a stretch there but since it’s early on in the script, you go with it.

Jennifer’s clearly in control of the relationship. It’s Thora Birch – Mena Suarvi Bff-ship in American Beauty territory. So when Jennifer informs a busy Needy that she has to come with her to see this new totally blog-like Emo band, Needy reluctantly agrees. Well not even 2 minutes into their first set, the club catches fire and nearly everybody dies. Except for Needy, Jennifer and the band (clearly inspired by the Great White fire that killed all those people in the Rhode Island club a few years back).

The emo band invites Jennifer along for an after-party to which, despite dozens of people just dying, she accepts. And after that night, Jennifer is never the same. Mainly because she’s possessed by the devil and needs to feed on able-bodied male teenagers to get through the day.

This is going to surprise some of you but I didn’t think Jennifer’s Body was that bad. It was silly but Diablo isn’t aiming for greatness here. I would say that there were a few times that the Jennifer character seemed to enjoy the act of dismembering boys a little too much – to the point where I’d be a teensy bit scared to meet Cody in an alley – but it was still funny.

There are Diablo-isms that will definitely test the patience of non-fans. For example, instead of a character saying “You’re jealous” they’ll say “You’re jello.” And if you say you’re not jello they’ll counter with, “Yes you are! You’re key lime green jello!” Personally I plan on never using the word jello again because of this and I would recommend to the people at Webster’s Dictionary that they remove the word “jello” so that Diablo can never use it again either. But what are you gonna do? It started with a chair.

Another curiosity I found was that whenever Jennifer killed someone, Needy became Obi-Wan Kenobi. She would have to sit down and take a moment to process a “terrible feeling.” I mean I know these two are besties but does that mean they also have The Force?

Hey look, I admit it, I thought the first 30 minutes of Juno were shit. But I look forward to Cody’s EW column every week. And as many of you have pointed out, exposure for any writer is a good thing. I sorta kinda didn’t mind Jennifer’s Body. It was somewhat not-unlikeable.

[ ] trash
[ ] barely kept my interest
[x] worth the read
[ ] impressive
[ ] genius

What I learned from Jennifer’s Body: So towards the end of the movie, the story becomes about Jennifer seducing Needy’s boyfriend, Chip, who she obviously wants to kill. Needy starts to sense this, of course, and must delicately persuade Chip to avoid Jennifer, all the while not being able to tell him that she’s a flesh eating satan-beast. It works but not nearly as well as it could have. Why? Because Needy didn’t love Chip. She *says* she does late in the script. But everything Cody’s shown us up to that point suggests that Chip is a big teenage sex-hungry oaf and played him for laughs. But those laughs came at the expense of us really caring about the final outcome. If we knew that Chip and Needy were desperately in love Romeo and Juliet style, do you know how powerful that final act could’ve been? How terrified we would be of Jennifer stealing away and killing Needy’s soul mate? That would’ve made for great drama. As of now, it still works, but just barely. We don’t really care if Chip is killed. Are a few laughs during the screenplay worth that? That’s up to you to decide.