Monday, 27 July 2015

Freaky Friday (2003)

"I look like Stevie Nicks!"

"Who's he?"

Another remake by Disney, then, and yet again this is a rare case of a remake being superior to the original. It's much better paced, for a start- as firmly established by the opening montage- and a hell of a lot less sexist; this time the mother, Tess, is a psychiatrist rather than a housewife and the daughter, Anna, plays lead guitar in a band that sounds a bit like the Donnas or Verruca Salt. 

(While we're on the subject, incidentally, the film has an excellent soundtrack. And I'm reminded how good mainstream guitar music was back in 2003. Unlike Anna, I rather liked the White Stripes.)

This is a much faster-paced film than the original, thanks both to a much snappier s riot which cuts down on needless exposition and a much more creative directorial style; kids' films have changed a lot in twenty-seven years.

But the standout reason why the film is so watchable is, of course, Janie Lee Curtis, a superbly talented comic actress. As for Lindsay Lohan... well, personal life aside, she can certainly act.

Downsides? You could argue that there's a little light racism directed against the Chinese, perhaps, but while this isn't perfect I think that would be a more than harsh judgement. Could a band really win a competition in spite of its guitarist doing naff all for the first minutes of the song? I think yet. But I'm not going to labour the point. This isn't the greatest film ever made, being a bit of lightweight fluff designed for watchability rather than depth, yes. But there's nothing wrong with that. Well worth watching.

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