It’s exciting to see Shyamalan on such confident footing once more, all these years later.
Walt Disney's “Freaky Friday” starts with an idea that will appeal to a lot of 13-year-olds -- if they could change places with their parents for a day, they wouldn't mess things up half as much as the grown-ups do. I cannot at the moment think of any reason why a grown-up would want to change places with a 13-year-old, but never mind: That's what happens here.
Barbara Harris discovers to her horror that she is the occupant of her daughter's body, is gulping down a rum-flavored pineapple ice cream whip in the local malt shop and is expected to play field hockey later in the day. Jodie Foster discovers to her intense dismay that she occupies her mother's body and is not, therefore, expected to leave the house on a skateboard.
The day's adventures revolve around their difficulties, and also around the Disney organization's recent fascination with people in bodies not their own. In their Christmas release, “The Shaggy D. A.,” Dean Jones spent much of his time in the body of a dog that thought to itself in Jones' voice. Now Barbara Harris and Jodie Foster think to themselves in each other's voices and talk in their own, which is better than being either Dean Jones or a dog, but not much.