Do you really remember what it was like to be a kid? Unless you were enchanted and sent back into your kid body (as happens to Jordan Sanders (Regina Hall/Marsai Martin) in the movie Little, then the answer is probably not. Now that we're grown, it's hard to recall how we once moved through the world – and how the world perceived us.
Age-swap movies are really about perspective. As we age, we often trap ourselves in the here-and-now and become estranged from our younger selves. When characters magically transform in age, they inevitably gain empathy for who they once were. Or at least we hope that's what happens to Jordan because she is the boss from hell — and could use a dash of kindness.
These rule-defying movies are perennially popular for a reason. Who wouldn't want to escape into the past or future selves, without actually having to live through the mundanity of daily life? What adult wouldn't want to grasp the long days of youth; what kid wouldn't want to escape from secondary school playground politics? As the films show, though, the grass isn't always greener in other life stages — just different.
These are our favourite movies that deploy the age-old age-swap narrative trick.