Thursday, December 30, 2004

13 Going on 30

Starring: Jennifer Garner, Mark Ruffalo
Category: Romantic Comedy

This movie does a slight variation of the 'What if you were given the opportunity to do things over again, would you have done anything different?' theme. Instead of looking back, it looks forward. The movie asks, 'If you could live the future today, would do something different now?' Semantics but still meaningful. The movies follows the life of 13 year old Jenna, who after a wish, finds herself at 30. She finds that she has gotten what she wished for and then some. She finds out that she made some changes to herself after that wish and that was what largely got her there. Of course, with change comes a price and the more she finds out about her life between 13 and 30, the more she questions whether it was worth it.

This movie grows on you. Each time I watch it or it comes on TV, I become more and more enamored with Jenna, Jennifer Garner's character who gets to be older with a wish at 13 to become, thirty, flirty and free. At first, it does come across as a bit awkward. Then, I realized that it was because it was probably awkward to find yourself 30 years old with the smarts (and the life experience) of a 13 year old. The energy Jennifer Garner brings to her character carries the movie and made it believable.

The supporting cast was good too. Although Mark Ruffalo did seem to be underwhelmed by the whole thing. Judging by what he has done in the past, I can't really blame him. It was also a bit jarring to watch Andy Serkis as Jenna's boss. But I guess as an actor, he needed to do something that didn't require white balls being stuck to him, as in Lord of the Rings and King Kong. 

The commentary was very informative too. For some reason, the director in his commentary seems to be apologizing for a lot of things. One of the themes of the movie seems to be 'be careful of what you wish for' and it does seem so in the director's case too. As his first major mainstream studio film after several smaller movies, he too is in a transitional process from one realm (of movie-making) to another. Though he does not say it, one does feel his contemplation of whether he has 'sold out'. Or maybe because he was a producer for so many other movies and that he (the director) was just talking to himself (the producer).

There is a whole lot of pointing fingers at the inaccuracy in the time-line at IMDB. Not a major flaw. It was probably due to how long the movie took from script to celluloid. Minus the years it took and you'd get to the time when the script was written. Minus 17 years from that and you know why the whole Thriller thing was in the movie.

All in all a good movie to watch and keep for a rainy day.