When Diablo Cody won an Oscar for her Juno screenplay, she was suddenly the coolest woman in Hollywood: a lavishly tattooed ex-stripper, discovered via her blog, who could turn an indie comedy into a blockbuster by packing the dialogue with new-minted teen slang. That's why Cody's complacent follow-up, Jennifer's Body, is such a let-down.
It's a horror comedy about a high-school cheerleader (Megan Fox) who is possessed. And while Cody doesn't do anything satirical, scary or sexy with the concept, a more fundamental flaw is this: Jennifer's Body is desperately uncool. The trouble is that Heathers, Clueless and Mean Girls have already demonstrated how waspish schoolgirl comedies can be, while the idea of throwing some horror into the mix seems archaic after seven series of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Instead of playing like a hip outsider's subversive new genre-mash, Jennifer's Body comes across as a tame, derivative vehicle for the girl from the Transformers franchise. All that sets it apart is Cody's trademarked slang, and that sounds even more gimmicky than it did in Juno.