13 Going on 30 (2004)

Why Are Formulas Endearing?

I just cannot understand why I find this endearing and repellent at the same time. I find it endearing because it sticks to tried and true formulas, and being easily hypnotised cinematically these formulas work on me.

I am disturbed at the same time because I recognise those same movie-story formulas: person in another’s body; person “sees” the future and reinvents their life; boy meets girl, boy looses girl, boy gets girl; main character is (self-referentially) in the media business defining formulas for others. We don’t have a cute dog here, but we do have an effluence of dimpled cuteness elsewhere including two slightly embarrassing musical numbers.

And it works as well as these things can, even though this smile-on-a-body has a rather “normal” body — something that runs across the formula. Why? Is it because we are so hungry for these reassuring fast food warmnesses that we go more than halfway into the screen?

Posted in 2004

Ted’s Evaluation — 1 of 3: You can find something better to do with this part of your life.


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