17 Again Movie Review
“17 Again” directed by Burr Steers is a fantasy tale which begins in the year 1989 when high school basketball sensation Mike O Donnell (Zac Erfon) who is about to play a match that could change his life forever with a scholarship that is waiting to be offered basis his performance in the match. Minutes before the start of the match Mike’s girl friend Scarlett (Allison Miller) meets him and informs that she is pregnant. Mike then decides that Scarlett is important does not play the match but decides to give up the lucrative scholarship to get married to Scarlett.
Twenty years later Mike (Mathew Perry) has his life turned upside down where his marriage is in rocks and he now lives with his good and rich friend Ned (Thomas Lennon) who is a software genius. His luck at his career is at a stand still as he works for a pharmaceutical company where his expected promotion at work doesn’t materialize and his relationship with his teenage children are completely non-existent.
Mike frustrated by all this visits his high school to reminisce over the accolades he had received and how his life could have changed if things would have worked out well. Suddenly a janitor (Brian Doyle-Murray) walks up to him and reminds him how brilliant he was twenty years ago.
Mike on the way back home finds the same janitor standing on the ledge to jump into the river. Mike rushes to save him but the janitor disappears and instead he accidentally plunges into the river only to come out as a 17 year old boy. Mike confused at the beginning over his transformation finds it hard to convince Ned that he is the real Mike. Ned then pretends to be Mike’s father registers Mike back to the same high school where he was once a blue-eyed boy.
At school when Mike decides to change his life the way he wanted to be the reality of life hits him hard when he comes to know that his children are being dumped and he takes this as an opportunity to set things right for them. In the meantime Ned is smitten by the high school principal Jane Masterson (Melora Hardin) and his initial attempts to peacock her fails but later they fall in love with each other.
Scarlett (Leslie Mann) now getting ready for the divorce with Mike moves ahead in life with her passion in gardening and on the day of hearing young Mike comes in and reads a letter which changes the decision of Scarlett. When all goes well due to the new young identity of Mike his daughter Maggie (Michelle Trachtenberg) falls in love with him and pesters him for sex while his feelings for Scarlett remains unchanged kisses her in a party only to be slapped by her and followed by Maggie and her friends for being so mean.
In the end when Mike decides to move on in life as he understands that his family is comfortable without him he decides to grab the scholarship which he let slip through his fingers 20 years back and when Scarlett rushes out of the stadium recognizing Mike he follows her handling over the ball to his son Alex (Sterling Knight) and he gets transformed back to the adult Mike.
In the end Mike ends up being the basketball coach of the same high school while his friend Ned’s relationship with Principal Jane turns into love as they move in together and Mike unites with his family and they all live happily ever after.
“17 Again” works well for some light-hearted fun.