Jennifer's Body

Movie review by
James Rocchi, Common Sense Media
Jennifer's Body Movie Poster Image
Glossy teen horror-comedy is full of gore and sex.
  • R
  • 2009
  • 102 minutes
Popular with kids

Parents say

age 15+
Based on 17 reviews

Kids say

age 14+
Based on 41 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Positive messages

Considering that one character becomes a demonic killing machine and another goes on a killing rampage to avenge her, it's hard to find any positive messages here.

Positive role models & representations

With its cast of murderous rock stars, sex-machine killing demons, and vengeful girl warriors, there are no truly positive role models in the film (though an argument could be made for the movie promoting a form of "girl power").

Violence

Gory violence: A young woman is stabbed to death as part of a satanic ritual; several people are devoured in bloody fashion by a demon that has possessed a young woman, with shredding of flesh, blood, etc. A fire at a bar kills several people; also stabbings, punches, kicks, and self-mutilation. Dead bodies are seen in crime-scene footage.

Sex

Lots of sex. Teens have consensual, safe sex; male and female nudity, reference to condom use. Nude female buttocks. Two young women make out in an extended scene. Plenty of naughty talk about sex and virginity -- "I'm not even a backdoor virgin," for example, and much more. Talk of flashing breasts to get served alcohol.

Language

Constant strong language, including (but in no way limited to) "f--k," "motherf--ker," "s--t," "hell," "ass," "t-ts," "damn," "dick," "dillhole," "goddamn," "retarded," "porking," and much, much more.

Consumerism

Many products/brands are mentioned by name -- including (but not limited to) Vagisil, Monastat, MySpace, Chevy, The Cheesecake Factory, and many more -- but more as a way to make the dialogue sound cool/up-to-date than in a particularly promotional/salesy manner.

Drinking, drugs & smoking

Teens drink hard liquor and beer, sometimes to excess; characters smoke cigarettes; references to peyote; cocaine use is implied in photographs.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that while teens will be clamoring to see this darkly funny horror movie -- which stars Transformers' Megan Fox and was written by Juno's Diablo Cody -- it's full of gory demonic violence, sex (including partial nudity, same-sex kissing, and a pervasive tone of sex as a game, a competition, and even a prelude to murder), constant strong language (from "f--k" to "s--t" and more), teen drinking, and more. Teens who watch expecting an offbeat screwball comedy like Juno will be in for a huge shock. Parents also need to know that this review is for the rated version of the film.

User Reviews

Parent Written bylulatula December 13, 2013
Parent of a 11 year old Written byiluvbeaches September 17, 2009

u should think twice b4 going with ur kids

no!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!not even for me!!!!!!!
Teen, 14 years old Written bylildee14143 January 9, 2014
Teen, 14 years old Written byscissorluv971 January 8, 2012

Mehhhhhhhh

I'm the kind of person who loves a good horror movie, I have no problem watching people get turned into cookies, mush, or really just a graphic bloodstain...

What's the story?

In a small town, Jennifer (Megan Fox) and "Needy" (Amanda Seyfried) are unlikely best friends. Then Jennifer is murdered in a Satanic ritual by a rock band whose members hope that sacrificing her will give them the big break they need. But a flaw in the ceremony -- turns out, when the instructions say "sacrifice a virgin," you can't get away with any substitutions -- means that Jennifer is now posessed by a hungry demonic spirit bent on murder. Can Needy stop her best friend's killing rampage?

Is it any good?

This is a sexed-up, glossy take on the traditional high school horror film, with plenty of Diablo Cody's zingy (some would say overly zingy) dialogue to add pep to the proceedings. Plus there's the presence of pin-up sex symbol Fox as the titular slayer. The movie works as a guilty pleasure thanks to its general air of grisly goofiness. And Seyfried's performance anchors the film in just enough emotional reality to make the film's plot matter.

Kusama's direction may take a backseat to Cody's script, Fox's performance, and the grisly special effects, but the end result is a fun if frightening night out for older teens and 20-somethings. Anyone else will be too removed from high school (or too overwhelmed by the pace and pitch of Cody's dialogue)  to be very moved by the stakes and action. Cody's follow-up to Juno won't be another Oscar nominee, but it earns a gory glory all its own. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the film's mingling of sex and violence/death -- why do so many horror films make this link? Does the film use Fox's pin-up girl image for dramatic effect?

  • What is the movie saying about sexual competetiveness between girls? Why do these issues get fought out in this way? What motivates girls to fight, and fight the way they do, in close friendships?

  • Why do you think so many horror films take place in or around high school? What does that say about being a teenager?

Movie details

For kids who love thrills

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