in 1989, mike o'donnell (zac efron) is a high-school basketball star with a bright future until he discovers that his girlfriend is pregnant.you know the rest of the story:they marry young,and reality beat down youthful vigor,turning fresh faced zac into an older,sour,embittered mike(matthew perry,who,it must be noted, does not in any way seem like a former high-school athlete).
mike's wife(leslie mann) has booted him out from their house, she's understandably sick of being blamed for his failures. mike's teenage children(michelle trachtenberg, sterling knight) seem oblivious to his influence. mike's stuck in a nowhere job,living with his geek-to-the-max bestfriend(thomas lennon,whose role is more annoying than amusing),but when a magical janitor grant mike his wish to be younger again,he get a chance to make a difference in everybody's lives.
17 again rests largely on efron's shoulders,and the actor proves convincingly that his screaming high-school musical fans are not overboard in their admiration,he dance bit,shoots some hoops and even throws out a very perry grimace or two(if only.he could have channeleda little more of perry's trademark wisecraking).
mike befriends his son and tries to imbue him with a little comfidence, and deliberately sabotages his daughter's relationship with a punk in one scene delivering a heartfelt plea for abstinece in sex-ed class that has the girls swooning and the boys grumbling.17 again is not afraid to engage in some less-than- strictly-wholesome fun:young mike still loves scarlett, and she's attracted to the boy who resembles her husband back in the day while simultaneously being horrified by the cougary aspects of her feeling. and eventually mike's daughter realizes the guy trying to lure her form the bad boy is, you know, really cute, which leads to a few extremely awkwaed moment.
there's never any doubt what the film's lesson will be--appreciate the good things you have--but 17 again is so much fun it makes the sentiment worth repeating.
cast:zac efron,leslie mann, matthew perry, thomas lennon.
producers:jennifer Gibgot, Adam shankman.
a new line release. runnung time 102 minutes. language,some sexual material,teen partying.playing at area theaters.
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