It's Not A Diary. It's A Movie.
"It's a spry, fluffy comedy. Lael Loewenstein, Variety
|Live-action adaptation of jeff kinney's illustrated novel about a wise-cracking junior high school student.|
"Does a great job of being in two places at once: In the head and gangly bodies of kids, and in the hearts of those of us who have survived grades 6-8. Lisa Schwarzbaum, Entertainment Weekly
"It's eminently suitable for children, fully inhabiting their world and finding real laughs there without resorting to sentiment, condescension, or snarky in-jokes for the adults. J.R. Jones, Chicago Reader
Hapless preteen Greg Heffley (Zachary Gordon) endures bullies, swirlies, morons, and wedgies while navigating the treacherous world of middle school and recording his traumas in his personal journal in this family-oriented comedy inspired by author Jeff Kinney's best-selling series of illustrated novels. Try as he might, Greg just can't understand who thought it was a good idea to place kids who haven't even hit their first growth spurt in the same school as kids who get a five-o?clock shadow by lunch time. Realizing that he'll have to get creative if he hopes to survive until high school, Greg concocts a series of get-cool-quick schemes that all go hopelessly awry. Despite the fact that he's viewed as a dork by his peers, Greg never loses hope that someday, when all is said and done, he'll be able to look back on his middle school experiences and laugh. Steve Zahn and Rachael Harris co-star in this comedy from HOTEL FOR DOGS director Thor Freudenthal.
Diary of a Wimpy Kid - DVD Review
filmcritic.com DVD Reviews
Published on: 8/3/2010 5:00 AM
|With all the love for uber-teens like Hannah Montana and the Twilight brood, what's with all the hype over a child who professes himself to be "wimpy?" If you're not familiar with Diary of a Wimpy Kid, you simply don't have your thumb on the pulse of the average elementary school child (lucky you). The series of books is fairly new to the kid-lit scene, combining scrawled text with hand-drawn scribbles as it outlines the trials and tribulations of the titular wimp, Greg....read the full review
Cast & Crew
3 stars out of 5 -- "Capron is ideal as BFF Rowley and steals all the scenes he's in."
"[A]n appealing family movie....[With] and endearing cast of characters and an energetic, if light, comic story..."
"With its jaunty, forthright tone, the movie does a good job of being in two places at once..." -- Grade: B
"DIARY OF A WIMPY KID is a likable movie for kids that will make adults chuckle as well because of the movie's key ingredient -- wit."
3 stars out of 5 -- "[I]t has the appeal of a Junior AMERICAN SPLENDOR, boasts moments of sharp wit and is well-played by a likable cast..."
Sight and Sound
"[W]ith a couple of amiable performances from Gordon and Capron, this is an energetic opening chapter."
3 stars out of 4 -- "[A] kids movie made for kids....A telling portrait of the importance of fitting in during those confusing formative years."
3 stars out of 5 -- "DIARY OF A WIMPY KID redeems itself with a rather sweet ending."
Chicago Sun-Times 9 of 10
It is so hard to do a movie like this well. Diary of a Wimpy Kid is a PG-rated comedy about the hero's first year of middle school, and it's nimble, bright and funny. It doesn't dumb down. It doesn't patronize. It knows something about human nature. It isn't as good as A Christmas Story, as few movies are, but it deserves a place in the same sentence. Here is a family movie you don't need a family to enjoy. You must, however, have been a wimpy kid. Most kids are wimpy in their secret hearts. Those that never were grow up to be cage fighters...Greg Heffley isn't the shortest student in his class. That would be Chirag Gupta. Greg (Zachary Gordon) is only the second shortest. He's at that crucial age when everybody else has started to grow. There's a funny slide show illustrating how his class looked in sixth grade, and how they look now -- some with mustaches. The girls of course are taller than the boys...The onset of adolescence is an awkward age, made marginally easier for Greg because he still hasn't developed an interest in girls. Even his best friend Rowley (Robert Capron) is flattered to be noticed by a girl, and Rowley is so out of it, he thinks that at his age kids still "play," when, as we all know, they "hang."...Where do they find these actors? They come up on TV, I guess. Chloe Moretz has been acting since she was 7. Zachary Gordon has the confidence and timing of an old pro; he plays wimpy as if it's a desirable character trait. Robert Capron, as his pudgy best friend Rowley, pulls off the tricky fear of being an inch or two taller than Greg, and yet still childish; wait until you see his Halloween costume. Greg's parents (Rachael Harris and Steve Zahn) aren't major characters, because what happens in school consumes all of Greg's psychic energy. His older brother Rodrick (Devon Bostick) is of course a sadistic teaser who makes life miserable. But at that age, so it goes...The movie is inspired by the books of Jeff Kinney, and the titles reproduce his hand-lettering and drawing style. The movie reproduces his charm. The director, Thor Freudenthal, made Hotel for Dogs (2009), received affectionately in some circles, but this time, his touch is more sure and his humor more sunny.
- Roger Ebert