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Diary of a Wimpy Kid is a 2010 American live-action/animated comedy film directed by Thor Freudenthal and based on Jeff Kinney's 2007 book of the same name.[5][6][7] The film stars Zachary Gordon and Robert Capron. Devon Bostick, Rachael Harris, Steve Zahn, and Chloë Grace Moretz also have prominent roles. It is the first installment in the Diary of a Wimpy Kid film series, and was followed by three sequels, Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Rodrick Rules (2011), Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days (2012), and Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul (2017).[8]

Greg Heffley, an 11-year-old who constantly fights with his teenage brother Rodrick and younger brother Manny, is apprehensive about beginning middle school. On his first day, he quickly discovers the ups and downs, such as the missing stall doors in the boys' bathroom and the difficulties of obtaining a seat during lunch. During P.E. class, Greg and his best friend Rowley Jefferson escape from a game of Gladiator and learn from their friend, Chirag Gupta, about a moldy piece of cheese on the basketball court that makes anyone who touches it an outcast, known as the Cheese Touch, and that the only way to get rid of it is to pass it on to someone else. They also meet Angie, a seventh-grader who isolates herself from the other students to "survive". Greg states his intention of becoming the most popular student in school.

The next day, Greg signs up for wrestling but suffers back-to-back humiliating losses against Fregley, an eccentric outcast, and Patty Farrell, Greg's arch-enemy from elementary school. On Halloween, while Greg is trick-or-treating with Rowley, some teenagers drive by in a pickup truck and spray a fire extinguisher at them. When Greg threatens to call the police, the teenagers chase them to his grandmother's house, but Greg and Rowley escape them after Greg accidentally damages the truck.

The boys join the Safety Patrol to become popular, and they try out for a contest that offers a student a chance to become the new cartoonist for the school paper. Greg accidentally breaks Rowley's arm, prompting other students to take pity on Rowley, thus making him popular. Greg's envy towards him only increases when Rowley wins the cartoonist contest. During a Safety Patrol assignment, Greg substitutes for Rowley and walks kindergartners down a neighborhood street, but panics when he encounters a truck identical to the teenagers' from Halloween and hides the kids in a construction zone. After being spotted by a neighbor who mistakes him for Rowley, he abandons the kindergarteners and flees. To his bewilderment, Rowley is suspended from Safety Patrol, but Greg eventually confesses the truth to him, offering it as a joke. Distraught at Greg's consistent mistreatment of him, Rowley ends their friendship. Greg is eventually dismissed from Safety Patrol while Rowley is reinstated as team captain and finds a new best friend in his classmate Collin.

Greg decides to pursue popularity without Rowley by joining the school's production of The Wizard of Oz. At tryouts, Greg is offered the role of Dorothy. He declines the role, and Patty threatens the teacher into casting her instead. Greg agrees to play as a tree after learning that the trees get to throw apples at Dorothy, but this scene is cut from the play and replaced with a musical number, much to his dismay. At the performance, Greg refuses to sing when he notices Rodrick videotaping. This prompts Patty to angrily berate him onstage, and Greg begins throwing apples at her, causing the performance to end in chaos. Later, Greg reluctantly attends a mother-son dance at school with his mother. Susan encourages Greg to try to reconcile with Rowley, but he is rejected. He can only dejectedly watch as Rowley and his mother win the crowd over with a dance routine to "Intergalactic" by the Beastie Boys.

One day after school, Rowley and Greg loudly confront each other, and a circle of students encourage them to fight; however, neither of them is good at fighting. The teenagers from Halloween arrive at the scene and force Rowley to eat part of the Cheese. They flee the scene when the school's P.E. teacher Coach Malone arrives, but when the other kids notice that the Cheese has been eaten, Greg accepts the blame for Rowley, mending their friendship.

At the end of the school year, Greg and Rowley make the yearbook Class Favorites page as "Cutest Friends”.

Why it Rocks

Diary of a Wimpy Kid movie poster.jpg

  1. Greg is a bit more likable than he is in the book and learns to be a better friend
  2. Amazing acting
  3. The beginning was pretty funny, where Rodrick pranks Greg to think it was the first day of school
  4. It stays faithful to the source material with, of course, some changes from it
  5. Original concept where an unpopular kid tries to be popular in middle school
  6. Funny moments, like whenever Greg gets embarrassed by his family or friends

the only Wimpy Qualities[]

  1. Most characters can be jerks throughout the film, especially Greg, Rodrick, or Manny

Reception[]

Critical response[]

Review aggregator site Rotten Tomatoes gives the film an approval rating of 54%, based on 106 reviews with an average rating of 5.51/10. The website's critical consensus reads, "Unlike its bestselling source material, Diary of a Wimpy Kid fails to place a likable protagonist at the center of its middle-school humor – and its underlying message is drowned out as a result."[16] It also holds a rating of 56/100 at Metacritic, based on 26 reviews, indicating "mixed or average reviews".[17] Roger Ebert gave the film three-and-a-half stars out of four, writing "It's nimble, bright and funny. It doesn't dumb down. It doesn't patronize. It knows something about human nature."[18] Glenn Whipp of the Associated Press was less positive, saying, "In transferring the clean, precise humor of Kinney's illustrations and prose to the big-screen, the material loses just a bit of its charm."[19] At the Movies host David Stratton gave the film one star while co-host Margaret Pomeranz gave it half a star. Stratton called the film "tiresome" and said there was "nothing remotely interesting in Thor Freudenthal's direction or the screenplay." Pomeranz disliked the character of Greg Heffley, saying "I really thought he was unpleasant. I did not want to spend time with him. I could not wait for the end of this film."[20] OregonLive.com gave the movie a C+ grade, criticizing it for being "too often dull, unappealing and clumsy, hobbled by unnecessary changes and inventions that add no charm, energy or, truly, point."[21]

Box office[edit][]

Despite a lack of distinctive marketing, Diary of a Wimpy Kid drew a decent crowd, opening to $22.1 million on approximately 3,400 screens at 3,077 sites, in second place at the weekend box office behind Alice in Wonderland but beating out the heavily hyped The Bounty Hunter.[22] It was the biggest start ever for a non-animated, non-fantasy children's book adaptation. Diary of a Wimpy Kid grossed more in its first three days than other film adaptions to children's novels like How to Eat Fried Worms and Hoot grossed in their entire runs.[22] The film grossed $64,003,625 in North America and $11,696,873 in other territories for a worldwide total of $75,700,498.[23]

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