Jamie Lee Curtis, Lindsay Lohan, Mark Harmon, Ryan Malgarini, Chad Michael Murray, Harold Gould and Rosalind Chao

Mark S. Waters

Running Time:
97 mins

Out to buy on DVD 26/04/04

"You're ruining my Life!!"

Anna Coleman

Anna (Lohan) is like any teenage girl. She is struggling with high school, the boy she likes doesn't notice her and her English teacher has it in for her. Tess (Lee Curtis) is your typical working mother. She has a book that has just launched, her patients from her psychiatry practice are very demanding of her time and to top it all she is getting married at the weekend. The problem is that neither mother nor daughter understands what each of them is going through leading to constant arguments and fights. This all changes when they wake up on Friday morning to realise that they have swapped bodies and now have to live each other's lives.

Body swapping comedies seem to come around in waves. After Big and Vice Versa in 1988, Hollywood has decided to return to the comedic possibilities of swapping the teenage and adult roles around. The good news is that Freaky Friday does it really well.

Based on the book by Mary Rodgers and a remake of the 1976 Jodie Foster movie, this updated adaptation adds nothing new to the generation gap comedy but it is the performances of the two leading ladies that make the movie standout.

Known primarily for her scream queen roles in horror movies, you can be forgiven for forgetting that Jamie Lee Curtis is a gifted comedic actress. Anyone who has seen Trading Places or A Fish called Wanda will recall that she can excel in this genre when given the chance and this movie is a gift to her career. This is a standout performance by the actress, as she captures the true essence of a teenager let free in an adult's body. Just the look on her face and the way she reacts to more mature situations is enough to convince you that this is an adolescent in an adult's world.

The same can be said for Lindsay Lohan. Again this is a breakout role for the up and coming teenage starlet. Probably best known for her appearance in another Disney stalwart, The Parent Trap in 1998, this is her first big break as a teenager and she grabs her opportunity with both hands. Like Curtis, she captures the mannerisms and tone of an adult superbly. You can see the complete change in character as soon as the swap takes place and she really comes into her own as the realisation of her teenage freedoms come into play.

The support characters are also good. The much-underrated Mark Harmon is as reliable as ever as Tess's fiancÚ Ryan. Ryan Malgarini isn't as annoying as he could have been as Anna's little brother Harry. Harold Gould plays the slightly deaf grandfather with his usual comedic flair and Chad Michael Murray is good as the love-struck Jake.

The movie does have its weak points however. It seems that every teenage star has to be in a band or be able to sing so the filmmakers will have big CD sales as well. You can bet that Disney has tied Lindsay Lohan to an exclusive acting and recording contract, using this film to showcase her talents. Also the Tess/Jake attraction story is abit too much as it seems to be pandering to Jamie Lee Curtis's own self-esteem.

Freaky Friday is good family fun. The filmmakers inject new life into the old, well-used premise and the performances by the two female leads are outstanding. While it does look at the differences between generations with rose coloured glasses and offer a sugar coated ending, there is enough here to cause arguments and expose a few home truths about what life is like for both ages.

Deleted scenes, Alternative endings, Freaky bloopers, 'What I Like About You' music video from Lillix, 'Me Vs. The World' music video from Halo Friendlies, 'Backstage Pass' with Lindsey Lohan, Interactive menu & Scene access


Freaky Friday (1976)

The Parent Trap (1998)

Vice Versa

The Usher Home | Hush, Hush... | The Big Story | The Usher Speaks

Stuck @ Home | Coming Soon | Links | Contact the Usher