April 24, 2011
Of all the Wimpy Kid books, this second one I liked the least. Forgive me for being humorless, but I found this book a wee bit mean-spirited. I felt that this was not too good for younger kids to read. God forbid they should think all these shenanigans are cool! For adults, these things were funny to read. However, if your young kids will be reading this one, it is definitely in Parental Guidance territory.
The film also mainly dealt with Greg Heffley's tumultuous relationship with his elder brother Rodrick, who was already a teenager. The topics ranged from Rodrick's heavy metal band called Loded Diper, how Rodrick did his homework, how Rodrick tried to get away with his secret house party when their parents were away, and the like. Same with the movie, and even more so, since this time you actually see these naughty kids in the flesh. You and your kids will see them disobey and lie to their parents.
To its credit, I liked how the lessons learned were somehow more visible here in the movie, than it was in the book. Of course, the misdeeds do get their comeuppance. Brotherly compassion and sacrifice also finds its way among the pranks. You just hope your kids see these lessons as well. Also the relationship of Greg with his cute crush Holly Hills was also quite charmingly portrayed in this movie. The character of the Mom is more well-rounded and developed here, so much better than in the first film. How they showed that very funny part of the book about what Mom was doing while Loded Diper was playing on stage was perfectly and hilariously executed. The Dad character though could use improvement.
I found this film just OK. My son thought it was lamer than the first. My daughter found it better than the first. I thought it was pretty much the same - very juvenile, occasionally funny.