When Jenna Rink is humiliated at her own 13th birthday party she makes a wish that she was 30. That comes true and she will quickly realise that wishing your life away is certainly not the best idea.
She wants nothing more than to be accepted by those popular girls, even though they aren’t actually very nice at all. They are stuck up and only care about themselves, wanting Jenna to write a report for them. She also wants to be with the most popular boy in school and this forces her friendship with Matt (who is lovely) to suffer.
When she hits NYC and is now 30, she achieved the majority of her dreams it seems. Although she is not a nice person anymore, whatever got lost along the way her morals also went with it all. I guess that can be rather thought provoking to think about what your 13 year old self would make of some of your life choices. My bet is that it would really shock yourself.
Being reunited with Matt even though they never really spoke after the party and fall out from that was where she would realise her mistakes. He is still a super nice guy and about to marry someone else. Even though he had never really got over his teenage crush on Jenna.
The way the film ends really is so satisfying and I personally think it has a lot to offer beyond the amusing moments that come along with this style of film and a teen going to an adult and missing everything in-between.
I loved this film when I first saw it back in 2004 and now in 2020 I still love the film. Although it is probably for very different reasons. In 2004 I had turned 17 so not far past those teenage years of being at school. Now I am into my 30s and makes you look at this in a rather different way. Considering she still feels 13 and attempting to live that 30 year old life highlights that no matter what we thought in our teens you still have no idea about what you want at 30. This now makes me wonder if that is something you ever figure out in life?
It also raises the question surrounding which friends will be the ones you actually have for life, even if you don’t manage to see them all that often as you age. But you will always know that they are around when you need them. Sometimes though I doubt that is something you can actually work out, as people change you just end up losing people along the way. This film certainly shows that you really need to think about who is actually a friend for the right reasons, the main one by being yourself.
Jennifer Garner is great in the leading role and manages to balance the innocence of being 13 into the messed up 30 year old. Especially when it comes to her boyfriend being naked, that really does have so much amusement. Her chemistry with Mark Ruffalo is brilliant and he certainly has a good nature for this type of rom-com. Something that he has been in a few times over the years. Then we get Andy Serkis and Judy Greer in the supporting roles and it really does make it all so good.