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"DIARY OF A WIMPY KID"
(2010) (Zachary Gordon, Robert Capron) (PG)

Alcohol/
Drugs
Blood/Gore Disrespectful/
Bad Attitude
Frightening/
Tense Scenes
Guns/
Weapons
None Mild Heavy Mild None
Imitative
Behavior
Jump
Scenes
Music
(Scary/Tense)
Music
(Inappropriate)
Profanity
Extreme None Minor Minor Minor
Sex/
Nudity
Smoking Tense Family
Scenes
Topics To
Talk About
Violence
Mild None Mild Heavy Mild


QUICK TAKE:
Comedy: A preteen boy tries to make a name for himself while maneuvering through the preadolescent social minefield that is middle school.
PLOT:
Greg Heffley (ZACHARY GORDON) is a normal kid, if a bit small for his size, who's about to enter middle school. He lives with his parents, Susan (RACHEL HARRIS) and Frank (STEVE ZAHN), preschool brother Manny (CONNOR FIELDING), and high school sibling Rodrick (DEVON BOSTICK). The latter informs Greg that he should lay low and not making any waves at school in order to survive, but there's a problem with that plan and his name is Rowley Jefferson (ROBERT CAPRON).

He's Greg's best friend, but while Greg recognizes middle school as the social minefield that it is, Rowley is content with being himself and still acting like a younger kid. Despite his brother's advice and that of school rebel Angie Steadman (CHLOE MORETZ) who writes for the Westmore Middle School paper, Greg is intent on moving up the social ladder and individual popularity rankings however he can, hoping to stay far away from the nerdy kid at the bottom, Fregley (GRAYSON RUSSELL).

While trying his hand at being on the wrestling team, a member of the safety patrol, auditioning for the school play and more -- all while having to deal with both classmate Patty (LAINE MacNEIL) who has a longstanding axe to grind with him, and some high school bullies who occasionally pop up -- Greg does what he can to make a name for himself. But his quest repeatedly ends up backfiring more than succeeding, eventually putting his friendship with Rowley in jeopardy.

WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
It's a good bet many in the same age bracket (middle school) will be interested, especially if they're fans of the book series.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: PG
For some rude humor and language.
CAST AS ROLE MODELS:
  • ZACHARY GORDON plays a new middle school student who thinks he's cool but is obsessed with finding a way to climb the social popularity ladder at school. But he must contend with his small size, the fact that he's essentially a nobody in the eyes of others, and that he's saddled with Rowley who he views as decidedly less than cool. As he does what he can to become famous, he routinely belittles and ultimately gets Rowley in trouble, all while having to contend with tormenting by his older brother and other, unrelated high school bullies.
  • ROBERT CAPRON plays his best friend, a boy still stuck in more child-like behavior, blissfully unaware that Greg and others think that he's uncool. He must contend with Greg doing him wrong, and inadvertently gains social popularity in the process.
  • RACHEL HARRIS plays Greg's normal mom who must contend with his behavior and that of his brothers.
  • STEVE ZAHN plays her husband and father to Greg and his siblings, a regular issue dad who's one hang up is trying to douse (with water) teens daring to TP his house.
  • DEVON BOSTICK plays Greg's older high school brother who torments him in the usual older sibling fashion, all while advising him not to make any waves at school. He's in a rock band and wears a lot of eye liner in one scene.
  • CHLOE MORETZ plays the social rebel at school who views the place as an intellectual wasteland and serves as the opinionated spectator of Greg's attempts to gain popularity. She has a streak of color in her hair and works at the newspaper.
  • GRAYSON RUSSELL plays the nerdy kid at school who's overjoyed when Greg chooses him by default as his new friend (to try to make Rowley jealous). He playfully comes after Greg with a booger on his finger.
  • LAINE MacNEIL plays Greg's intense classmate who has a longstanding grudge against him and makes that perfectly (and loudly) clear to everyone.
  • CAST, CREW, & TECHNICAL INFO

    HOW OTHERS RATED THIS MOVIE


    Curious if this title is entertaining, any good, and/or has any artistic merit?
    Then read OUR TAKE of this film.


    (Note: The "Our Take" review of this title examines the film's artistic merits and does not take into account any of the possibly objectionable material listed below).


    OUR WORD TO PARENTS:
    Here's a brief summary of the content found in this PG-rated comedy. Profanity consists of a few minor expletives, while some religious and plentiful colorful phrases are also uttered. The cover of a magazine (seen several times) features a bikini-clad, cleavage revealing model, and some non-explicit but slightly sexually related dialogue is present.

    Some comedy-based violence and contact with others is present, while a boy accidentally ends up breaking his arm. A lightly played bit in a supposedly haunted section of woods might be unsettling to the youngest of viewers. Bad attitudes are present, as is all sorts of behavior that kids might be enticed to try to imitate. Various instances of scatological, crude and gross-out humor (all juvenile based) also occur.

    If you're still concerned about the film and its appropriateness for yourself or anyone else in your home who may be interested in seeing it, we suggest that you take a closer look at our detailed listings for more specific information regarding the film's content.

    For those concerned with bright flashes of light on the screen, there's some of that in an imagined bit of Greg as a professional wrestler. There's also some of that from Greg and Rowley running with flashlights on at night, and then some near strobe effects later at a school dance.

    For those prone to visually induced motion sickness, there are some spin-around camera shots late in the film (featuring Greg and Rowley stationary as the background whirls around behind them).


    ALCOHOL OR DRUG USE
  • None.
  • BLOOD/GORE
  • We see Manny sitting on a training toilet and hear peeing sounds.
  • We see a flashback to Manny sitting on a regular toilet and Greg jokingly (but meanly) telling him not to look at the potty monster below him (thus freaking out the kid).
  • One kid eats old gum off a school locker.
  • A kid wipes his nose and then wipes that on a desk.
  • We see a close-up of Fregley's mole that has a single hair sticking out of it.
  • The male gym teacher uses a bathroom analogy (using it every morning) to exercise.
  • We see a few boys sitting on toilets at school (nothing explicit seen or heard).
  • Seeing that the school bathroom doesn't have stall doors (and we see a boy sitting on a toilet -- nothing explicit), Greg rethinks using the bathroom, reports this finding to Rowley, and states he's not "pooping" until high school.
  • Fregley sneezes a wet sounding sneeze into his hands.
  • We see an imagined bit where Greg is an adult and a former bully now works for him, with talk of scooping up dog poop.
  • We see/hear that Rodrick's band's name is "Loded Diaper" (also written on the side of a van).
  • A boy refers to another as a "turd burglar" (not meant literally).
  • After Rodrick chases Greg into his bedroom (and Greg closes and locks the door), the latter says he has to pee, but can see his brother's shoes beneath the door and thus can't leave. We then see a comedy montage of a hose being sprayed, the aquarium bubbling and other related water matters, all of which make Greg have to go more (and he holds his hands at his clothed crotch). When he can't take it anymore, he races to the bathroom where Manny is sitting the toilet. He hurries him away and begins urinating, only to have Rodrick pop out from the shower, prompting Greg to turn in fright and accidentally pee all over him (we see the stream).
  • A teen tells another to pull his finger, but the other boy doesn't.
  • Rowley draws a cartoon strip where a kid steps in a puddle that turns out to be acid, leaving him with a bone stump at the end of his leg.
  • Fregley sticks his finger up his nose and then comes after Greg with that in a playful manner. Greg locks himself in the bathroom and hours later a piece of paper slides under the door. Greg picks up it, only to read and then see that the booger is on the paper and his finger is on top of that.
  • A bully commands Rowley to eat the moldy and gooey piece of cheese that's been on the playground for months. Rowley turns around (away from the camera) and appears to do so, but we don't know if he faked it (a "bite" has been taken out of it).
  • DISRESPECTFUL/BAD ATTITUDE
  • Greg occasionally refers to other students at his school as "morons" (not to their faces).
  • A bully knocks books from a smaller kid's arms, while some other bullies play keep-away from another kid.
  • A male coach calls his male students "ladies."
  • Greg doesn't want to talk to Angie upon first meeting her.
  • Kids make fun of Rowley and Greg after overhearing the former ask the latter is he wants to come over and play after school.
  • Rodrick refers to Rowley as "chubby buttons" and "baby hippo."
  • Patty has a bad attitude toward Greg throughout the film (based on, we later see, him making fun of her years ago with a rhyme about her being fat and having a face like a rat).
  • To get into a higher weight class on the wrestling team, Greg secretly wears ankle weights beneath his socks.
  • Various kids mock Greg and Rowley, singing the usual "...sitting in a tree, K-I-S-S-I-N-G" song.
  • Rowley and Greg break Susan's command that they not leave the neighborhood while trick-or-treating (they do so to get better and bigger candy in a rich area).
  • Some bullies douse Greg and Rowley with foam and then chase them (the chasing continues in other scenes later in the film).
  • Hoping to avoid teen bullies, Greg (who's guiding much younger kids in his safety patrol duties) has them go down into a hole in the ground, and allows a neighbor woman to believe he's Rowley (he's wearing his jacket). He then lets Rowley take the fall when the adult supervisor of the safety patrol hears of how the kids were treated (they weren't harmed).
  • Patty threatens to sic her PTA mom on the drama teacher if the latter casts Greg rather than her as Dorothy in their musical production of "The Wizard of Oz."
  • FRIGHTENING SCENES
  • To try to scare Greg and Rowley, Rodrick tells them a story about a house of devil worshippers that cooked and ate kids from a pizza oven, with the house then burning down and killing everyone, resulting in spirits haunting the grounds.
  • Some teens in a truck pull up alongside Greg and Rowley as they're trick-or-treating and spray foam on them. When Greg yells out that he's going to call the police, they back up and chase them. The boys take refuge in a relative's house, and then come out, armed with a leaf blower and a weed trimmer. Greg loses control of the latter and accidentally shreds the paint on the truck, resulting in another chase, this time into a reportedly haunted lot (at night). The teens don't follow the boys into the wooded area where Greg and Rowley hear echoey voices and then see the shadow of what looks like a demonic figure (they flee in terror) but turns out to be Fregley in a regular Halloween costume (all played lightly, but younger kids might be unsettled).
  • Other subsequent scenes feature Greg and Rowley (or just Greg) seeing the teen's truck (or what they think is that) coming their way, prompting them to hide.
  • GUNS/WEAPONS
  • None.
  • IMITATIVE BEHAVIOR
  • Phrases: "Oh jeez," "Flip out," "Are you insane?" "Sissy," "Morons," "Smell the love," "A total freak show," "Ladies" (said by a male coach to his male students), "My name is belly button," "This place is an intellectual wasteland," "That freak job," "Cheese touch," "It was worse than nuclear cooties," "I'm not pooping until I'm in high school," "Loded Diaper" (the name of Rodrick's band), "Crappy," "Chubby buttons," "Turd burglar," "Let's go, baby hippo," "Loser," "That girl is crazy town," "Don't be such a wuss," "Gag me with a spoon," "That is totally rad," "Wicked," "What, are you a foreign exchange student?" "Candy corn crap," "Shut up, you tool," "I think Shelly is looking hot today," "That really stinks," "Zoo-wee mama," "You dumb moron," "You think?" "Kick his butt," "You're so freaking dead" and "Eww, as if."
  • Rodrick pulls a prank on Greg in the middle of the night, telling him he's late for school. Greg then rushes around the house, including eating his cereal by pouring it directly from the box into his mouth, followed by milk from the carton, and then a spoonful of sugar.
  • Rodrick (who's shirtless) holds Greg's head and face in his armpit and mockingly tells him, "Smell the love."
  • Manny shows chewed food in his open mouth.
  • We see a flashback to Manny sitting on a regular toilet and Greg jokingly (but meanly) telling him not to look at the potty monster below him (thus freaking out the kid).
  • A bully knocks books from a smaller kid's arms, while some other bullies play keep-away from another kid.
  • One kid eats old gum off a school locker.
  • Rowley folds his belly fat like a mouth and voices "My name is belly button."
  • After a kid touches an old piece of moldy cheese on the playground, others react as if they have the plague, followed by a montage of many students touching others to make them "it" (of having the cheese curse).
  • A cartoon version of Fregley belches.
  • We see/hear that Rodrick's band's name is "Loded Diaper" (also written on the side of a van).
  • Rodrick draws something resembling a tattoo on his arm with a marker.
  • We see some imagined bits of Greg (at his current age) being a professional wrestler and throwing other kids in the ring around, etc.
  • To demonstrate school wrestling moves, the coach grabs the assistant coach and slams him down to the mat, followed by flipping him down to the same moments later.
  • While competing against Fregley in wrestling team practice, Greg looks pained as Fregley (after tackling Greg) has his foot pressed against Greg's clothed crotch.
  • Greg has Rowley ride by on his big wheel and throws a football at him (this happens again later).
  • To get into a higher weight class on the wrestling team, Greg secretly wears ankle weights beneath his socks.
  • Various kids mock Greg and Rowley, singing the usual "...sitting in a tree, K-I-S-S-I-N-G" song.
  • As part of his band, Rodrick wears lots of eye makeup.
  • As Frank states he's going up onto the roof to throw water on teens trying to toilet paper his house on Halloween, we see a flashback to him mistakenly throwing water on a mother and her young, costumed child. Later, and back in the present, he ends up mistakenly throwing water on Greg and Rowley when they return to the house. We then see one lone roll of TP hit the house.
  • Trying to defend themselves from some teen bullies with yard equipment, Greg loses control of a weed trimmer and accidentally shreds the paint on the older boys' truck.
  • In "Pig Latin" or something similar, one boy tells another that a girl is "looking hot today."
  • To stop Rowley from talking and ruining something, Greg stomps down on his foot.
  • A teen tells another to pull his finger, but the other boy doesn't.
  • Seeing Rowley getting sympathy from the girls over his broken arm, Greg tries to fake his own arm injury for the same.
  • Fregley sticks his finger up his nose and then comes after Greg with that in a playful manner. Greg locks himself in the bathroom and hours later a piece of paper slides under the door. Greg picks up it, only to read and then see that the booger is on the paper and his finger is on top of that.
  • Rowley and his mom do some dancing in unison at a school dance, including slapping their own clothed butts.
  • Kids chant "Fight! Fight! Fight" at Greg and Rowley to egg them on. The two then rush and bump into each other, fall to the ground, and struggle a bit (played for comedy).
  • Angie has a dyed streak in her hair.
  • JUMP SCENES
  • None.
  • MUSIC (SCARY/TENSE)
  • Some suspenseful music (some of it playfully done) is heard in a few scenes.
  • MUSIC (INAPPROPRIATE)
  • The song "Super Freak" plays, but the usual sexual elements have been removed and the "she" has been changed to "he."
  • PROFANITY
  • At least 2 craps (1 used as "crappy") and 1 use each of "Good God," "Oh God," "Oh my God" and "Swear to God."
  • SEX/NUDITY
  • We see Greg in his underwear, running around the house in a panic, after Rodrick has pulled a prank on him stating Greg is late for school.
  • We see Rodrick shirtless.
  • We see various male middle school students shirtless during PE class.
  • We see an imagined bit where Greg is a shirtless, sunbathing adult.
  • Greg and Rowley find Rodrick's hidden biker magazine (the titled appeared to be "Nitro Mamas") that features a cleavage-revealing woman in a tiny bikini on the cover. This is seen again later when Greg uses it to get Rodrick in trouble, with their mom finding it and reprimanding him for possessing it.
  • Greg says he overheard someone commenting that someone of the opposite sex had a "cute butt." Not realizing the connotation of that, Rowley tells another boy that he has a "cute butt."
  • Various kids mock Greg and Rowley, singing the usual "...sitting in a tree, K-I-S-S-I-N-G" song.
  • In "Pig Latin" or something similar, one boy tells another that a girl is "looking hot today."
  • SMOKING
  • None.
  • TENSE FAMILY SCENES
  • Rodrick occasionally torments Greg, but in the usual, older brother fashion, thus creating brief but not longstanding tension.
  • TOPICS TO TALK ABOUT
  • Kids who mature at different points in their lives, thus leading to awkward friendships and such when two or more are at different stages.
  • Trying to be popular in school.
  • Dealing with bullies.
  • Letting others take the blame for something you did.
  • Girls participating on the boys' wrestling team.
  • There's talk of one kid having mono.
  • VIOLENCE
  • A stick figure sort of cartoon character slaps another, while a bully one strikes another (played in a comedy fashion).
  • There's some contact and tackling during a game of capture the flag.
  • Patty shoves Greg and Rowley aside.
  • We see some imagined bits of Greg (at his current age) being a professional wrestler and throwing other kids in the ring around, etc.
  • To demonstrate school wrestling moves, the coach grabs the assistant coach and slams him down to the mat, followed by flipping him down to the same moments later.
  • While competing against Fregley in wrestling team practice, Greg looks pained as Fregley (after tackling Greg) has his foot pressed against Greg's clothed crotch.
  • Greg has Rowley ride by on his big wheel and throws a football at him. He misses, but does hit and knock the head off a deer statue in the yard behind him.
  • Trying to defend themselves from some teen bullies with yard equipment, Greg loses control of a weed trimmer and accidentally shreds the paint on the older boys' truck.
  • To stop Rowley from talking and ruining something, Greg stomps down on his foot.
  • Doing the football and big wheel thing again, Greg throws a football that hits the bike, sending Rowley flying through the air and into a snow bank (we then hear Rowley broke his arm from that).
  • A boy in a tree costume (for a musical) trips and falls hard to the stage (played for laughs).
  • Mad at Patty during a musical performance, Greg (dressed as a tree from the Wizard of Oz) throws a fake apple at her. She catches and throws it back, hitting him in the torso (in his costume). That's followed by an apple flinging fight among many students, ending when Patty rushes and tackles Greg down onto the stage floor.
  • Kids chant "Fight! Fight! Fight" at Greg and Rowley to egg them on. The two then rush and bump into each other, fall to the ground, and struggle a bit (played for comedy).



  • Reviewed March 15, 2010 / Posted March 19, 2010

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