Movie Mondays — Love Where You’d Least Expect It: 17 Again

Let’s take our media back. Why are most of the headlining movies only representing one set of morals? As a culture, we are more diverse than that. Let’s shine some light on the other values; ones Hollywood tends to label ‘conservative’, ‘lame’, and ‘old school’. Movie Mondays intends to do just that.

So what are we looking for? A pro-life message. A message that testifies to the beauty of life, family, and love. A message that values all human dignity. 

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17 Again

17-again-pictures-5

I’ll admit it: When I first watched this with my mom in seventh grade it was one of the most awkward experiences of my life. Regardless, when I rewatched it the other day I couldn’t say, “I forgot how funny this was!” enough times. The classic digs, the nerd jokes, the awkward dating situations – it’s hilarious! Plus, it’s nice that Zac Efron is a total babe.

If you’re not familiar with the movie, 17 Again hit theaters in 2009. Mike O’Donnell (Matthew Perry) is lost in his mid-life crisis. As a seventeen year old, he chose to marry his pregnant girlfriend, Scarlet (Leslie Mann), instead of accepting a full-ride basketball scholarship. With his job at a stand still and a divorce on his hands, Mike O’Donnell is turned into his seventeen year old self again (Zac Efron) in a race to win back his family.

But how does this movie apply to us, baby-loving pro-lifers? Well the answer is in this quote from the health class scene. All the students are just given condoms, since their school doesn’t have faith that any of them will remain abstinent. Mike doesn’t count these young adults out, but rather conveys why waiting until marriage is a beautiful thing.

 “I think that means you do it with someone you love…And preferably when you’re married!  When you’re ready to take that love and turn it into a baby. Because that’s what love is. It’s that first moment when you hold your baby girl and you didn’t know anything could be so small or so delicate. And you feel that tiny heartbeat and you know, you couldn’t love anything more in the whole world.(film clip)

This movie isn’t just another hormone-filled teenage movie with a Hollywood Hunk in the starring role. It actually teaches us a couple of important lessons. One, don’t give up on family. They’ll be the ones with you no matter who is tearing you down, what you’re too afraid to try, or what dreams you dare to go after. Two, don’t sell yourself short. Maggie (she got into the Georgetown!) and all of her friends seem to think that giving themselves away is the only way to either get a guy’s attention or keep a steady relationship. This is a problem for both guys and girls – as if they’re less of a person if they haven’t had sex. Sex should never be something that earns someone’s affection – our love is worth more than that. I think the way Mike comforts Maggie combats this attitude of love vs. sex best:

“You might have to meet a few more jerks, but one day you’re gonna meet a boy who treats you the way you deserve to be treated. Like the sun rises and sets with you.” (film clip)

17 Again illustrates that choosing abstinence or keeping an innocent baby isn’t going to destroy your whole life. It’s going to point it in a new direction that you can make great, greater than you might realize.

-Gabby Munoz, COL ’18

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this is the first of a series on Pro-Life messages in the media — new posts will be up every other week on Movie Mondays! 

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