It's 1987, and skinny, bookish 13-year-old Jenna Rink wants three things: To be part of the popular "Six Chicks" clique at her middle school, to be as "fabuloso" as the models she sees in Poise magazine, and to catch the eye of the cute Chris Grandy. Instead, she's doing homework for the Six Chicks so they'll come to her birthday party, she's gawky and undeveloped, and the guy in her life is the roly-poly Matty, who comes with his ever-present camera.

Jennifer Garner as Jenna Rink

Jennifer Garner as Jenna Rink

When her party flops-the best gift is a dream house from Matty, who's also the best guest-Jenna kicks Matt out, closes her eyes and wishes to be "thirty and flirty and thriving." Aided by some magic wishing dust that came with Matty's gift, she wakes up the next morning to her wish. It's suddenly 17 years later, and to her delight, Jenna's got what looks like a fabulous life—with a great apartment, an attractive boyfriend and a job at Poise. But she's also become someone she doesn't recognize inside. And the damage she's done may be beyond repair.

This romantic comedy is essentially an updated version of Big (1988) and deals with themes similar to The Kid (2000), but actors Christa Allen and Jennifer Garner play gawky-turned-gorgeous Jenna so well, you almost don't care. Viewers who are used to seeing Garner play the tough girl Sydney Bristow in Alias will admire her transformation into a wide-eyed, winsome chick with the pluck to save the failing magazine and patch up her life. And there are some great moments of physical comedy, especially right after Jenna coltishly discovers her transformation. The film is also full of hilarious '80s pop-culture references to Pop Rocks candy, Casio keyboards, Fruit Roll-Ups, Lisa Frank stationery and the like. It also includes probably ...

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview

To continue reading, subscribe now. Subscribers have full digital access.

13 Going on 30
Our Rating
2 Stars - Fair
Average Rating
 
(not rated yet)ADD YOURSHelp
Mpaa Rating
PG-13 (for sexual content and brief drug references)
Directed By
Gary Winick
Run Time
1 hour 38 minutes
Cast
Jennifer Garner, Mark Ruffalo, Judy Greer, Andy Serkis
Theatre Release
April 23, 2004 by Sony Pictures
Browse All Movie Reviews By:
Tags:
Posted: