NEW YORK – Denzel Washington is a 'Man on Fire' while Jennifer Garner is '13 Going on 30' at the box office this weekend.
Washington says "Man on Fire" helped reinvigorate his acting interest. Critics are mostly interested as well. In the film, the Oscar winner is on assignment as a bodyguard for little Dakota Fanning. She's not your average poor little rich girl. A cornucopia of corruption swirls around Mexico City where Dakota's dad -- Marc Anthony -- needs protection. It’s a seedy town when Mickey Rourke is your lawyer.
In the film, bad guys grab the little gal and Denzel hunts them down -- after ditching his good friend Jack Daniels. Ridley's brother Tony Scott directs and it all has a woozy boozy feel that drags a little at the end but on the whole is a terrific few hours.
Another nice surprise this weekend is proof that Jennifer Garner isn't just a television star. Yes, "13 Going on 30" is just an estrogen fueled version of "Big," but her comic timing elevates what could have been another dopey teen to grown-up sitcomish film into something really enjoyable, according to most reviews.
Garner is never this funny on "Alias," and that's the sign of great actress. Also along for the ride is the "better than the room" Mark Ruffalo who seems to make wildly divergent role choices but isn't entirely wasted here. Between "13 Going on 30" and "Freaky Friday" we may have a new genre. Quality role reversal roles for women. Come to think of it, how many more times can they really pull this off. If this is a hit, no telling.