This is really, really the last time I post anything on the movie Juno. I have been very complimentary of it in the past, but I've also confessed that it brings on a big case of Ugly Tears at the end, no matter how many times I've seen it. After a long bit of thinking, I believe I know the reason for the tears. It's not the beauty, it's not the redemptive nature of the movie: nope, not. at. all.
It's the 30 second cry scene. Followed by the "happy teenage couple with no worries" ending.
Why? Because if that was all I was to my birth mother, then I don't want to know about it. And I want to cry, a lot. Really, can anyone tell me what Juno feels throughout the entire movie? When she really gets down to expressing herself, what does she have to say? Well, she's annoyed - tired of being a whale, tired of being stared at, tired of her boyfriend taking someone else to the prom. Then, at the very end, she cries. Does she cry because she misses her child, because she's so relieved it's all over, or because the epidural has worn off and her stitches hurt? We're not told. Your guess is as good as mine.
And then it's over. At the end of the movie she's skinny (lots of profile shots), she's back to riding her bike, the light is yellow and tender, and her voiceover talks about how she and her boyfriend are like peanut butter and jelly. It's Deep, Man. Really, really deep.
If that's all that happened when I was born, it crushes me. If my birth mother walked away from my birth and delighted in her post-pregnant life from Day 1 without a backwards glance, I doubt the existence of her soul. It's not that I wish suffering on a single human being - especially not the one who gave me life - but I'd like to know I was more than that. Just like Juno wants - in the end - to have her "chair" with Paulie Bleeker mean something real happened, I want to know that what happened in the early morning hours of June 15, 1970 wasn't just a "get up and walk away" kind of thing. Juno tells everyone it was. I beg by God to differ.