Being a part of this generation, by the time we turn 30, many of us will receive the same familiar message:
“You’re 30, flirty and thriving!”
You got me, right? It’s a callback to the famous 2004 comedy “13 Going On 30”. Jenna Rink, our protagonist, always dreams of being the “it” girl at school that everybody looks up to. Life isn’t so nice to Jenna, though: On her 13th birthday, she is humiliated by her classmates and grows sick of high school. She then wishes that she was 30, “flirty and thriving”, just like those gorgeous women featured on magazine spreads. The next day, Jenna wakes up, only to finds out that she has miraculously turned into 30-year-old Jennifer Garner.
If you have gone through high school with braces, acne, and a burning desire to climb the social ladder, you would find yourself reflected in Jenna Rink. The movie addresses many teenage problems, from those queen bees in matching outfits to puberty awkwardness. Still, 13 Going On 30 stays loyal to the rom-com genre that makes it approachable to every audience. That’s why right after the premiere, it became an instant classic and still holds a special place in our hearts until today.
Top 5 movies like 13 going on 30 – Source: USA Today
This weekend, let’s have some good laughs with these 5 movies like 13 Going On 30!
List Of Movies Like 13 Going On 30
Below are our recommendations for movies like 13 Going On 30 in chronological order:
Freaky Friday (2003)
17 Again (2009)
He’s Just Not That Into You (2009)
Easy A (2010)
Movies Like 13 Going On 30 – Big (1988)
Big tells the story of Josh Baskin (Tom Hanks), a 12-year-old boy who transforms into a 30-year-old man by a wish. Excited to begin his life as an adult, Josh heads to New York and applied for a low-level job at the MacMillen toy company. Luck seems to keep coming when he bumps into the company’s owner by chance and is offered a promotion testing new toys. Soon after, Susan Lawrence, a co-worker, develops a romantic interest in Josh. In spite of all these, the pressure of adulthood eventually takes over and he finds himself longing for his simple, peaceful days as a boy.
Big (1988) – Source: IndieWire
Since ‘Big’ was produced first, nearly every critic criticizes 13 Going On 30 for not being original even though they found it interesting. I would argue this because although they share the same concept, the plot ideas are not the same: In 13 Going On 30, Jenna grows older and gets transported to 17 years later. More than a grown-up body, Jenna inherits a whole new life: A career, new friends, and even a boyfriend. In Big, even though Josh grows up, he stays in the present. As you can see, the two characters are dealing with two completely different situations. Hence, you don’t have to worry about watching an older version of 13 Going On 30.
Big threw a big challenge to Tom Hanks’ appearance: Convince audiences that he is a 12-year-old boy trapped in an adult body. With the help of a witty, clever, insightful, and heartwarming plot, he fulfilled the role perfectly. You should watch this movie to see that sometimes, it is better to see the world through the eyes of a child!
The movie receives a rating of 7.3/10 on IMDb and 97% on Rotten Tomatoes, showing that the messages it delivers are still relevant today.
Freaky Friday (2003)
Freaky Friday (2003) Trailer
Single mother Tess Coleman (Jamie Lee Curtis) and her 15-year-old daughter Anna (Lindsay Lohan) are like night and day. As a result, living under the same roof drives them insane. After receiving a mysterious fortune cookie in a Chinese restaurant, the two wake up to find their bodies being switched. Since it is impossible to switch back, they have no choice but to masquerade as one another until they find a way out. By walking in each other’s shoes, they eventually come to understand and respect each other.
While the movie contains many scenes we can anticipate, its success comes from the cast. Well, the concept of body-switching is nothing new. However, it means a huge challenge to our actors and actresses: They have to adopt body language and inner nature despite the age gap. As mentioned above, Tom Hanks did a great job portraying a 12-year-old in the body of an adult. Personally, I don’t think anyone can surpass that, but Curtis comes close. You will be surprised (and entertained) at the way she depicts 15-year-old Anna in the body of her mother.
Lindsay Lohan, who was 17 years old at the time, delivered a typical teenage girl that we all can relate to: She loves music, is a bit mad at her life, is a bit dramatic, and is easily annoyed by her little brother. Most importantly, she is unhappy with her mother, who is constantly on her case. The chemistry between Lindsay Lohan and Jamie Curtis was perfect, like real mother and daughter. Lohan also did a great job portraying a 40-year- old. Though the spotlight still goes to Curtis, simply because it is much funnier watching a teenager in a middle-aged woman’s body than the other way around.
Overall, if you are looking for movies like 13 Going On 30 but with your mom, I highly recommend Freaky Friday!
Movies Like 13 Going On 30 – 17 Again (2009)
Starring Zac Efron (who just reached the peak of his reputation at the time thanks to his role in High School Musical), 17 Again quickly gained huge attention right after it was premiered. The movie tells the story of Mike O’Donnell (Matthew Perry) – a high school basketball star with a bright future. However, to his friends’ surprise, he decided to push everything aside, got married, and raised the children.
20 years later, Mike’s marriage came to an end. He didn’t get the promotion he desired and was looked down on by his own kids. Mike has a chance to fix the mistakes and change his life when he magically transforms into a teenager (Zac Efron). In the process of fixing his past, though, Mike might be messing with the present and future.
17 Again Official Trailer
Most IMDb users find 17 Again intriguing because of its idea, and I agree with them. At a certain point in life, we all will eventually question the choices we made in our past. “Would things be better if I have chosen differently?”, you might ask. Having a chance to re-route our life in a milestone is something many wish for. In 17 Again, that wish was granted. However, it did come with a cost.
Since 17 Again is a teenage rom-com, it didn’t go so deep into the negative consequence. Still, the movie successfully delivered its message: Appreciating what you have and live in the present rather than the past. It’s something all of us, no matter how old we are, need to learn throughout our lives.
He’s Just Not That Into You (2009)
This 2009 romantic-comedy-drama movie is based on Greg Behrendt’s self-help book of the same name. Self-help books were never my cup of tea, so I wasn’t planning to watch them at first. My friend successfully lured me into watching it, though, and after two hours of laughing and clapping, I realized He’s Just Not That Into You delivers more than what it sounds.
The story follows a group of Baltimore-based friends and their different love-life problems. Beth (Jennifer Aniston) desperately seeks commitment from Neil (Ben Affleck), who desires nothing more than the status quo. Gigi (Ginnifer Goodwin) is sick of waiting by the phone, while Mary (Drew Barrymore) has plenty of supportive male friends, yet none is straight. Meanwhile, Janine struggles to place trust in her husband.
He’s Just Not That Into You – Source: NY Daily News
Let’s admit. The movie is far from perfect. It has various scenes and outcomes that are downright predictable. It can be illogical at times. Some of the characters might drive you crazy. Still, He’s Just Not That Into You is light-hearted, easy, and entertaining. All the relationships were nicely intertwined without being contrived, and there are plenty of charming jokes inside.
If you are just looking for something funny to chill after a long working day, interested in 13 Going On 30, yet prefer a more mature side of it, then movies like He’s Not That Into You are exactly what you need.
Movies Like 13 Going On 30 – Easy A (2010)
Just like 13 Going On 30, Easy A did a good job portraying a teenager’s struggle. Lured by her famous best friend to spill details about her dull weekends, high schooler Olive Penderghast (Emma Stone) tries to spice things up by lying that she lost her virginity for a fictional college freshman. Words spread like wildfire, and Olive quickly becomes infamous. To her surprise, she enjoys the attention more than she thought.
Easy A Official Trailer
Judging by numbers, this movie has gained impressive attention compared to teenage rom-com: It scores 7.0/10 on IMDb and 85% on Rotten Tomatoes. This is understandable because Easy A meets all the requirements of a good comedy.
The plot is brilliant to show Olive’s transformation after the gossip. As her reputation rises, she now possesses the power to help the needy (which is a thing many of us dream of when we were in high school!). Following up are endless dramas, though, and seeing how Olive deals with them is thrilling and entertaining at the same time. Oh, don’t forget that the movie comes with a ton of inside jokes that can make you look cooler if you use them in real life!
Relatable, sexy, funny, sarcastic, and lovely, Emma Stone’s portrayal as Olive was what made her a star. If you are a fan of Emma Stone, you must watch this movie. If you are not a fan of her, you will fall endlessly in love with her!
Looking for more movies like Easy A or She’s The Man? Check out 9 Awesome movies like She’s The Man!
Movies Like 13 Going On 30 – Final Thoughts.
Whether you are an adult and would like to look back at your teenager or a high schooler who tries to find a way to kill time, this list of quirky and entertaining movies like 13 Going On 30 will satisfy you.
Romantic-comedy movies that approach teenagers all have flaws that shouldn’t be judged by Oscar standards. With wholesome relationships and positive messages they convey, these movies are meant to be enjoyed light-heartedly with your family or friends!
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