"Junebug's" unfortunate existence kicks of in Chicago where highfalutin gallery owner Madelaine meets southerner George at an auction. The two obviously hit it off because they are soon married and heading down to George's birthplace to visit his parents. The trip has ulterior motives, however, as Madelaine tries to lure a reclusive but brilliant artist(or so they tell us--his art is, and I say this as kindly as possible, garbage) to show his work in her gallery. Upon their arrival, Madelaine is met by George's family, a motley crew of southern charicatures who proceed to be blown away and/or scared off by the urbane Madelaine. Cultural sterotyping insues.
What truly offended me, however, was that Morrison, instead of just sticking with the "Southerners are idiots" plotline, attempts to flip the script and tell us that maybe Southerners are stupid BUT they are, for the most part, better, more honest and family oriented people than the emotionally vacuous, shallow northerners. Morrison indeed succeeds in insulting everyone he writes into his script without ever intending to do so, a feat which is owed some credit, I suppose.
Although "Junebug" is largely irredeemable due to its risible characterization, Amy Adams attempts (in vain, but she comes close) to save the entire movie by giving a radiant, beautiful performance at the eternally optimistic Ashley. Adams takes Morrison's stupid script and works wonders with it, crafting an entirely sympathetic and wonderful character that makes sitting through Junebug somewhat worthwhile instead of a total waste of time. The rest of the cast ranges from quite good (Embeth Davidtz) to awful (Benjamin Mackenzie) but everyone is overshadowed by Adams which creates a noticeable assymetry in any scene she is in.
I know that "Junebug" has quite the cult audience and I'm sure if this blog at more than two readers I would be swamped witn accusations that I just didn't get it. Maybe I didn't, but in the words of the immortal Charles Barkley, I doubt it.