13: The Musical (2022) is a teen musical drama (as the name suggests) following the story of a soon-to-be-turning teenager, Evan Goldman, who shifts from New York City to Indiana following his parent’s divorce. Finding himself in a new environment, with no acquaintances or friends, he must win over the people from his new school to have the perfect Bar Mitzvah party he always wanted.
Evan Goldman, 12 years old, lives a fruitful life in New York City, with the company of his friends, as he enjoys a great social circle within his school. As his 13th birthday draws near, he is quite content with his life and has everything to make his Bar Mitzvah party special. However, his aspirations take a big hit when he is informed unexpectedly about his parent’s marriage ending when his father meets somebody else, leaving both his mother, Jessica, and him in disarray as it meant for them to shift to the small town of Indiana along with Grandma Ruth. To Evan’s expectations, the place turns out to be a dull affair as he predicted, but quickly makes a friend in Patrice, with whom he decides to hang out often. On his first day of the new school, he realizes that he can still make his Bar Mitzvah as he always dreamt off when he realizes the prospect of making friends with popular individuals.
The movie is filled with musicals, and while it is meant to be one, they are not very relevant to the story always, and sometimes just for the sake of it. While some of them are justifiable, they are quite extended to the point it misses the mark as the message is continuously repeated within the lyrics. Most of the time, they are needless as whatever it looks to add, the dialogues have already communicated the same.
When it comes to the main plot, there is a lack of substance within its core as it is very visible due to the generic side quest Evan engages in to win people in his school for the party. It conveniently shifts the focus away from Patrice and Evan’s duo, as he tries to win approval among his other peers which inevitably doesn’t go down too well due to the predictability of the next move. We get to see more about the trio of Lucy Hallman, Brett Sampson, and Brenda, three popular individuals stuck in a love triangle, as Evan tries to seize the opportunity of their situation to make friends with them.
The thing is it isn’t something which you haven’t already seen, in both the main and the side plots. It fails to garner interest as it sticks to being a teen drama filled with continuously elaborated musicals filled with common character traits among all characters and story routes which can be seen coming from a long way back. The school drama itself is very narrowed down to peer relationships which looks odd enough to give an appeal of a skit, with happy endings in this transparent feel-good musical that follows unimaginative principles and execution.
It is best to skip this one if musicals are not your cup of tea.
Final Score – [3/10]
Reviewed by - Devyansh Anand
Follow @AnandDevy on Twitter
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