My older son, nearly a teenager, doesn't often sit through family movie night. So when he asked if he could pick the next film I was beyond thrilled. He wanted to watch Diary of a Wimpy Kid. "Which one?" I asked. He said I could choose. Having seen them all multiple times, I went with my favorite, Rodrick Rules, the second film, but this review is applicable to all three films.
The film series of Diary of a Wimpy Kid is based on the extremely popular book series of the same name written by Jeff Kinney and is responsible for making "the cheese touch" a household term. While the novels follow a young boy, Greg, trying to "avoid the pain" in middle school, the books tend to attract younger readers (second graders and up) and consequently, so do the films. If you allow your children to read the books, the films will be fine. If you're unfamiliar with the books, or just want to know if the films are worth watching, keep reading.
Rodrick Rules is the second film and focuses on the strained relationship between Greg and his older brother, Rodrick, played by a favorite of mine, Devon Bostick, who does a spectacular job in these films and is undoubtedly my favorite character.
"You may be my brother, but you'll never be my friend." ~ Rodrick to Greg
Having successfully survived sixth grade, Greg is now confident in his place at school. However, he and his classmates are still dealing with the complete and utter social awkwardness that comes with the age. In addition, he has a pesky baby brother and a pain-in-the-butt older brother that are making his life a living hell. Throw in some embarrassing parents played by Steve Zahn and Rachael Harris (whose performances are highlights of these films) and you are dealing with every adolescent's nightmare existence.
Greg's mother, tired of the constant bickering between her two older sons, comes up with an incentive plan that will reward the two for spending quality time together - WITHOUT fighting. Sounds simple enough. But when attempts at a truce fail, the boys are grounded and find themselves home alone. They learn that there is no better way to bond then to get into mischief together and then try and cover it up!
"You know, you may not be half as lame as I thought you were." ~ Rodrick to Greg
Diary of a Wimpy Kid 2: Rodrick Rules is rated PG for some rude humor and language. I agree there is quite a bit of crude adolescent humor, but it is all innocent fun for the right audience. Both my sons love these films. As I've mentioned, Rodrick Rules is my favorite of the three, primarily because of the performances of Bostick, Zahn, and Harris, but also because of the tender moments between Rodrick and Greg. As a mother of two boys, I am no stranger to sibling rivalry, and this film helped put it all into perspective and give me some hope that it may eventually cease!
Read more of my family movie reviews.