(Since Juno is now screening in limited release, we're re-publishing Kim's review of the film from Telluride. We'll also publish a new review of the film when it goes wider later this month.)
I've been waiting to see Juno for a long, long time now. I first heard that Jason Reitman was going to be working with Ellen Page on this film shortly before Sundance this year, and I talked briefly to the young actress about Juno at Sundance. At the time, Page was promoting An American Crime; that film, in which she played Sylvia Likens, a young girl brutally murdered while under the care of a foster family, was emotionally wrenching for Page, and she told me then she was looking forward to taking on some lighter fare with Juno, and especially to working with Reitman, who was still riding the waves of success from his feature debut, Thank You for Smoking.
I was lucky enough to get to see Juno at a jam-packed sneak preview here at Telluride today; it was utterly charming in every possible way, and is getting the most positive buzz I've heard about any film so far at the fest. Page stars as Juno, a smart, quirky, 16-year-old girl who, after a sexual encounter with her best friend, Bleeker (Michael Cera), finds herself pregnant. Right from the start, we know this isn't going to be your average "after-school-special" film about a teenager getting knocked up and facing Big Decisions. Scribe Diablo Cody (aka Brooke Busey-Hunt) sets the tone from the opening scene, with tiny Page chugging a gallon of Sunny Delight while she looks at an abandoned easy chair and tells us, "it all started with a chair." Three pregnancy tests later, Juno accepts that she is, in fact, pregnant, and from there has to decide how to handle it.