Directed by Katie Aselton, ‘Mack & Rita’ is a comedy movie that revolves around a thirty-year-old woman named Mackenzie “Mack” Martin. Mackenzie “Mack” Martin has felt outcast throughout her life. She longs to be able, in the future, to act like her inner 70-year-old self without judgement. Mack meets a stranger while on a bachelorette party to celebrate Carla, her best friend. He transforms her into a seventy-year old.
Mack’s transformation forces her to don the identity of Rita, her fictional aunt. However, as time passes, she finds her life taking a definite upturn and feels the beginning of something romantic with Jack, Mack’s dog-sitter. The movie stars Dustin Milligan, Taylour Paige and Elizabeth Lail. It takes viewers on a warm, heartwarming journey. Many people are curious about whether certain scenes in the movie were inspired by real life. We are here to answer that question!
Is Mack & Rita a True Story?
No, ‘Mack & Rita’ is not based on a true story. Madeline Walter and Paul Welsh wrote the movie. Katie Aselton was responsible for directing her first comedy film. Aselton also directed the movie for the first time. According to Aselton, it was a great experience having other people involved in filmmaking. She was thrilled by the diversity of perspectives that she and her writers brought to the movie to make a story that had something for everyone.
Aselton particularly enjoyed working with the writers of the famous transformation scene in which Mack becomes a seventy year-old woman. She explained that the protagonist’s breakdown is something she herself related to, as the small things that led to the protagonist’s impressive rant often frustrate several women, including the director. One of the movie’s major selling points is the use of the beloved body-switch trope in a unique manner. In fact, films like ‘Freaky Friday’ and ‘17 Again‘ are still enjoyed by the public. Aselton appears to understand the importance of this particular element.
“I think the device of using body switching as a genre, as a storytelling device, is really helpful in teaching the lesson without feeling like you’re guarding something. It’s a great way to show two sides of one coin or two perspectives without it getting preachy in there,” Aselton shared with Los Angeles Confidential magazine. “And I think there is something fun about the contrast in all of the things, and I also think it shines a light on the fact that we all still feel all the things. We feel old and young and like we’re just starting, and we’re at the end of our rope. We hold all of these things at the same time.”
Diane Keaton (the amazing actress who plays the role of Rita after her transformation), was very grateful for the chance to be part of the film. The actress was able to share her many insights, which led to Rita’s love for the movie. “Are you thinking I didn’t pick out those clothes with help? Yes, I did. That was my choice. I’m taking the hit for that one. Of course, the hair too—lovely. It says that I’m also a co-producer down at the bottom there, so they had to deal with me. I made some perfect choices for that character,” the actress told Vogue.
In all, the familiarity in ‘Mack & Rita’ stems from the real-life issues addressed in the movie. Mack’s feelings of frustration and loss of belongingness resonate with a large portion of viewers. Despite the supernatural elements used in the narrative, the underlying message of living one’s life without being bound by set ideals for a particular age seems highly applicable to regular life.
Read More: Where Was Mack & Rita Filmed?