Zachary Gordon   Robert Capron   Steve Zahn   Rachel Harris

DIARY of a Wimpy Kid

      Hotel For Dogs was a film that stole two hours of my life that I will never get back. Thor Freudenthal follows up his last flop by directing a film that is equally as pathetic and uninviting. The family film has evolved quite a bit since the early 90’s, no longer are family films pacifiers for children, but certain studios take great stride to include material for both the young audience and the adults. Movies directed by Freudenthal however have not evolved and reflect more prehistoric days of family movies. Based on the popular book by Jeff Kinney, Diary of a Wimpy Kid is a never ending collage of events that will remind no one of their middle school experiences.

      As he prepares for his first day of middle school Greg Heffley (Gordon) is determined to break out of the awkward 6th grade stereotype and replace fear with popularity. Warned by his older irritating brother (Devon Bostick) to keep a low profile, with each desperate attempt to get noticed or say the right thing Greg works his way down the popularity pole. With his best friend Rowley (Capron) at his side every step of the way, Greg can’t understand why his simple minded buddy is doing better than he is in the middle school society. Greg gets beat up by a girl, touches boogers, even breaks Rowley’s arm and the semester is just getting started.

      For a film with no A-list names, picking up a $63 million dollar box office run means only one thing, a sequel. Yes it’s on the way, and I am sure 7th grade will be just as uninspiring as the 6th. The trailer for the film showed the best parts which end up being only mildly entertaining in context. The silent toddler who seems to have bladder problems is the funniest part of the movie, mostly because he looks like an alien. Whether Gordon’s performance or simply the characters behavior; I disliked Greg throughout the entire movie and just kept waiting for him to get the punch in the face he deserved. Harris who plays Greg’s mother is made up to resemble Sarah Palin for whatever reason is never explained.

      Certainly this movies’ intended audience can be captivated by anything on a digital screen, but for those twelve year olds who actually care what they watch I am very thankful films like Harry Potter exist to inspire them with good movie taste and perhaps even future film makers. The moral of the film is that its lead character does everything wrong to try and fit in, but will an audience this young really be able to understand that plot device? Long gone are the days of teenage films like Simon Birch or The Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys.

Final Thought – Diary of what not to include in a family film.

Grade D+

By: Dustin Chase W.

Editor: Jennifer Gih