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December 27, 2007


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Ha! That's awesome... I'm looking forward to the movie.

Maybe we are too hard on movies. If they took the time to make sure everyone's quibbles or nitpicking was addressed, a movie would probably never get finished. After all, it is possible, maybe not likely but possible, that the scenario you are quiblling over could happen.

That Sonic Youth thing struck me too, bothered me. That is, until I remember the particularity of my own music knowledge when I was sixteen. Maybe she's heard of Sonic Youth, but hasn't yet listened to their music. It seems like there should be a logical sequence to listening to these bands, but when you're sixteen, there might not be.

I disagree. I don't think that it's totally implausible for a 16 year old to be introduced to classics fromt he 70s and not the 80s. When I was younger, I possessed enough of that prized knowledge of musical arcana to dig Bowie's Ziggy era, yet wasn't even able to draw a line from the halcyon days of glam to modern-rock retreads produced by Marilyn Manson and Courtney Love in the late 90s. Should it be obvious to know the connection between the Circle Jerks and Bad Religion? Yes, but not to a 16 year old. Teenagers like Juno are as likely to fetishize what rock history they can claim as their own and apart from their peers as they are to actually trace the lines and understand every era the way nerds like us do.

Brendo - I just checked your blog; never been there before but it looks great.

re Juno, I guess I'm just basing it on my own way into music, which is that it was a lot easier to work backward. It seems that Sonic Youth would be an obvious point of reference, even if she'd never actually bought an album; yet she seemed totally unaware of them. Also, I thought it a little weird that she knew Mott the Hoople's "All the Young Dudes" but not Bowie's.

Ugh, let's just be honest: There's not a lot that is plausible in that godawful script!

I thought Juno was really quite good, by the way.

Honestly, I am less annoyed with "gaffes" like the one you pointed out (as I obviously give the filmmakers artistic licensce on characters' tastes) than I am with the over-saturation of music in flicks altogether. The post "High Fidelity"/"Garden State"/"whatever pic-with-a-soundtrack you choose" world seems to be too intent on using semiobscure (for mass audiences I mean, obviously) bands as a shorthand for outsider or "Indie(TM)" aesthetic to characters. It's honestly just cliche in and of itself by now. Why can't people go back to aping Tarantino's aping of Scorsese and use inapropriatly poppy semi-kitch for the same end via planned incongruity? Because Natalie Portman isn't cutting a dude's ear off to the Shins isn't cute enough, that's why. Fuck you, Braff.

And thanks for the props. We just started Neon Hustle to sharpen our pens a bit for other stuff, but we all liked it so much that we have committed to getting some serious and constant posting done this year. Watch for my "Immortals" list to start this month (like Steve's trek through the Modern Library list, but for music.)

I'll keep an eye out for that, thanks.

I didn't think the soundtrack to Juno was too bad or over the top. I did feel suddenly ancient when If I Were a Carpenter was used in a Classic Rock sort of way, however.

Saw Juno tonight. Liked it. As for your music observation, I think it's not so implausible after all. It's not too difficult to believe that she could be into older bands without knowing newer ones (that was how I did it). And she actually doesn't respond to the Melvins reference explicitly, so it's entirely possible she doesn't know them. With the Sonic Youth comment, depending on which record she got, it could have sounded like noise, even to someone used to the Stooges and '77 punk. Also, she could merely have yelled that because she was upset and wanted to say something hurtful to the guy, and his taste in music seemed really important to him...

As for Mott the Hoople, hey, I still don't know the Bowie version of "All the Young Dudes" (didn't even really know there was one, though it doesn't surprise me; he wrote the song, didn't he?).

Yeah this bothered me too. All these explanations are plausible, but I think the truth is that the writers just made a bad choice. It's exactly the sort of band that Mark would love, but not the sort that Juno would have never heard of. We aren't talking about some obscure classic punk band, but rather an almost-mainstream group that has been releasing loads of music with loads of people for 30 years. Sonic Youth is currently releasing albums and touring. They are on a major label and sometimes get MTV play. So it makes no sense that Juno hasn't at least heard of them if she has a serious enough interest in music to not only know Patti Smith and the Stooges, but also be able to get Melvins references and know Mott the Hoople. I think the drummer for the Melvins even played with Sonic Youth for a while, but maybe wrong about that.

Besides in 2006, Sonic Youth and Iggy actually WENT ON TOUR TOGETHER. Your telling me that a teen that idolizes the Stooges wouldn't notice that? I mean, this would have happened at almost exactly the same time as Juno's story. Also, the single "Incinerate" was pretty popular and even got radio airplay in 2007.

What does seem likely is that she has a teenage mentality of "good music only exists in _____ genre of ______ era" and from that point of view, she might have heard of Sonic Youth but not actually listened to it. I can't remember if she said she didn't know them or not.

I know this is an old topic, but hey I'm slow. I just saw the movie and this nit-picky point fired me up. I feel like a Star Trek fan obsessing over teeny little plot details. lol

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