Ah, to be young again…

We were surrounded. There was no escape. There was no hope.  

…We had gone back to middle school.

Groups, no herds, of giggling pre-teen girls filled the theater. They crowded all the seats and ran down the aisles, laughing and screeching as they went.

“We did this to ourselves,” my friend said in terror. “We came here on purpose. We bought the tickets knowing who’s in the movie. We…we…”

“Should totally break into song!” My friend wasn’t remotely amused by my statement but a passing group of girls squealed at the thought. They ran off giggling about Zac Efron, and how amazing he was.

Now, I’ve only seen bits and pieces of High School Musical and had no real opinion of the movies or their star, Zac Efron. I did, however, know that the movies and the actor were avidly loved by pre-teens everywhere.  

Why this didn’t occur to me when I decided to see 17 Again, I shall forever wonder.

But, despite the theater full of pre-teen girls who kept squealing in delight, the movie itself was hilarious. I’ll even readily admit that Zac Efron is talented actor – never mind that I kept expecting him to break into song.

Now, 17 Again is a fun movie. Mike O’Donnell (Matthew Perry, Friends) is a rundown adult going through a divorce who makes a wish to revisit his high school years. When he does just that, by de-aging into his 17-year-old self played by Zac Efron, his whole life is turned upside down and rediscovered.

Living with his best friend, Ned Gold (Thomas Lennon, I Love You, Man and Reno 911) Mike experiences the teenager’s life of the 21st century through bullying, sex education, parties, light saber fights, and, of course, blatant flirting with his wife (don’t forget, he’s 17 and flirting with a 30 some year old woman).

Those facts alone spell great comedy.

There’s much, much more to the movie. The comedy is blatant and it’s subtle. Overall, 17 Again is a great movie if you’re looking for a laugh and a good time.

And, better yet, no one breaks out into song!

I can’t say you won’t be surrounded by pre-teens and be vividly reminded of your middle school years, but I can guarantee you’ll get a few good laughs out.

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