JENNIFER’S BODY (2009) Reviews and overview

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‘She’s got a taste for bad boys’

Jennifer’s Body is a 2009 black comedy horror film about a newly-possessed cheerleader who becomes a succubus and kills her male classmates. Meanwhile, her best friend strives to stop her.

Directed by Karyn Kusama (The InvitationXX) from a screenplay written by Diablo Cody, the American-Canadian movie stars Megan Fox, Amanda Seyfried, Johnny Simmons and Adam Brody.


The title is a reference to the song of the same name by alternative rock band Hole on their album Live Through This. As a tie-in to the film, Boom! Studios produced a Jennifer’s Body graphic novel.

Working with Cody again following their collaborative efforts on the film Juno, Jason Reitman stated he and his producers “want to make unusual films”. Cody said she wanted the film to speak to female empowerment and explore the complex relationships between best friends.

Jennifer's Body

The film, which had a budget of $16 million, grossed $16,204,793 domestically and $15,351,268 in international sales, for a worldwide total of $31,556,061.


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Anita “Needy” Lesnicki (Amanda Seyfried), once an insecure teenager, is now a violent mental inmate who starts the story as a flashback while in solitary confinement. Needy and popular cheerleader Jennifer Check (Megan Fox) have been best friends since childhood, despite having little in common.

One night, Jennifer takes Needy to a local dive bar to attend a concert by indie rock band Low Shoulder. A suspicious fire engulfs the bar, killing several, and Jennifer agrees to leave with the band despite Needy’s attempts to stop her.


Later that evening, Jennifer, covered in blood, appears in Needy’s kitchen and proceeds to eat food from the refrigerator. Unable to digest the matter, she vomits a trail of black, spiny fluid and then leaves in a hurry as Needy calls after her…


“This isn’t your assembly-line teen horror thriller. The portraits of Jennifer and Needy are a little too knowing, the dialogue is a little too off-center, the developments are a little too quirky. After you’ve seen enough teen thrillers, you begin to appreciate these distinctions. Let’s put it this way: I’d rather see Jennifer’s Body again than Twilight.” Roger Ebert

“It lacks punch through and through, and though the movie is noble in trying to explore the complicated relationship between Fox’s Jennifer and Seyfried’s Needy (as well as the underlying dynamics of high school female relationships), all of these elements get lost in the shuffle. There are simply too many disparate ideas working against each other”. Cinema Very Tasty



“There is a lot of intelligent camp here, and some sharply observed characterizations (Brody, in particular, is wickedly funny). Female empowerment would have been the obvious message here, with Jennifer’s bloody appetites stemming from a take-back-the-night scenario gone terribly awry (as in Teeth, a smart indie film from 2007), so it was a pleasure to see Cody and Kusama delving instead into the frequently disempowering effect of female friendships.” Time


“Fox merely needs to look either vacant or evil, which the Transformers boy-toy does spookily well. And at least the movie is more punky than wannabe-pithy, unlike Cody’s script for the overrated Juno. But words and story are still the lifeblood of a movie, and Jennifer’s Body is filled like a Twinkie with half-fleshed-out ideas (demonic bands, undead superpowers, a weirdo waterfall), and becomes fatally distracted from its big Carrie-like conclusion at a high school dance.” New York Daily News


Jennifer’s Body was released in the United States and Canada on September 18th 2009.

Cast and characters:

Megan Fox … Jennifer
Amanda Seyfried … Needy
Johnny Simmons … Chip Dove
Adam Brody … Nikolai
Sal Cortez … Chas
Ryan Levine … Mick
Juan Riedinger … Dirk
Colin Askey … Keyboardist
Chris Pratt … Officer Roman Duda
Juno Rinaldi … Officer Warzak (as Juno Ruddell)
Kyle Gallner … Colin Gray
Josh Emerson … Jonas Kozelle (as Joshua Emerson)
J.K. Simmons … Mr Wroblewski
Amy Sedaris … Toni Lesnicki
Cynthia Stevenson … Mrs Dove
Nicole Leduc … Camille
Aman Johal … Ahmet from India
Dan Joffre … Raymundo
Candus Churchill … Nutritionist
Carrie Genzel … Mrs Check
Emma Gallello … Little Jennifer
Megan Charpentier … Little Needy
Jeremy Schuetze … Craig
Valerie Tian … Chastity
Emily Tennant … Gossiping Girl
Karissa Tynes … Other Girl (as Karissa C. Tynes)
Eve Harlow … Goth Girl
Michael Brock … Goth Boy
Genevieve Buechner … Goth Girl #2
Adrian Hough … Colin’s Dad
Gabrielle Rose … Colin’s Mom
Michael Bean … Priest
Bill Fagerbakke … Jonas’ Dad
Marilyn Norry … Jonas’ Mom
Cut Chemist … DJ at Dance
Zoe Laliberté … Candlelight Vigil Singer (as Zoe LaLiberté)
Chelsey Smith … Candlelight Vigil Singer
Whitney Chow … Candlelight Vigil Singer
Michael Orstad … Candlelight Vigil Singer
Ronnie Robinson … Orderly
Ed Anders … Orderly
Roxanne Wong … Patient #1
Diane Dutra … Patient #2
Maya Toews … The Creepy Hand
Lance Henriksen … Passing Driver (uncredited)

Filming locations:

British Columbia, Canada
Devil’s Kettle Falls, Minnesota (waterfall sequences)

Technical details:

102 minutes | 107 minutes (unrated)
Audio: Dolby
Aspect ratio: 1.85: 1

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