17 Again is of course not an original plot. A lot of movies have an older person relive their youth, and find out they actually had it good. Sometimes, they get to become old instead. And also other times, they just switch bodies, such as 18 Again! the movie I first heard of when I read about this one.
I got to see 18 Again! when I was about ten, and probably only really remember any of the plot because hey, there were boobs in it (and it was PG?). Score!
Silly kids, you can’t score points in a cafeteria. You have to use a gym!
Back in the late 80s, Mike (Zac Efron) was a stud. Everyone loved him, nice guy, star of basketball team. But during the game when scouts were on hand to see him, it all went to hell. He found out his girlfriend was pregnant, and to comfort her, he left the game and proposed on the spot, pledging to be the best dad to the kid.
Like, 20 years later, and he has turned into Matthew Perry. He has worked for the same company for 16 years and nothing to show for it. He has two kids now, Alex (Sterling Knight), a shy teenage boy who doesn’t have many friends, and Maggie (Michelle Trachtenberg), a girl who might be dating a bully (Hunter Parrish). And well, his wife (Leslie Mann) now wants a divorce.
Turns out he blames her for the life he is in. If he didn’t go after he, he could have gone to college and been a star maybe. Way to take it out on your wife, jerk face. So he currently lives with his (now rich) best friend from high school (Thomas Lennon) and has a bad relationship with his family. But due to some random magic he finds himself as his 17 year old self again! After the awkward realization, he now sees it as a way to fix his life. Maybe actually stay as the young version and get a do over.
Or maybe, fix his real life. He is now going to school with his kids. Can he warn his daughter and student body about teenage pregnancy and its effects on life? Can he help his son finally fit in? Can he actually fix his marriage? Why is Jim Gaffigan playing a high school coach, when he is the type of guy who never would work out? Can he help his friend get with the school principal (Melora Hardin)? Okay, that probably isn’t a priority.
“Do you dance with all of your friend’s mothers?”
So what did he chose?! Of course he decided fuck all his responsibilities, time to go to college and get those chicks and money. Right? Who wouldn’t.
But that would be crazy. So instead we got an older guy, trying to not get his daughter attracted to him, and not fuck up his life completely. Overall it did have some interesting moments, but it was pretty easy to tell what was going to happen the whole time. Can’t say I saw any part of the friend/principal relationship coming though, that was weird.
The movie is a decent one, nice resolution, but overall doesn’t offer much new to the genre. So besides that, uhh, watch if you want I guess.
2 out of 4.