Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Book Into Movie: Diary of a Wimpy Kid

On Saturday, as promised, I took The Girl to see Diary of a Wimpy Kid.  She absolutely loves Jeff Kinney's Diary of a Wimpy Kid series (click here to read our review of Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days), and she was so excited when she found out one of her favorite books would be on the big screen.  The Girl and I were both curious how "a novel in cartoons" would be transformed into a non-animated movie, and I'm happy to say it was done quite well.

Like the book of the same name, Diary of a Wimpy Kid focuses on Greg Heffley as he enters middle school.  He wants to be popular, but despite trying his hardest, he gets beat by a girl in wrestling and is forced to sit on the floor and eat his lunch because no one will let him sit at their table.  His endearing best friend, Rowley, doesn't help matters by dressing like Greg and asking him loudly if he wants to come over after school "to play."  Packed with hilarious moments -- from playing a tree in the school play to a sleepover with the disgusting Fregley -- Greg's antics had us laughing from the very beginning.  But there are some serious moments in the film, when Greg's quest to be in the class favorites section of the yearbook jeopardizes his friendship with Rowley.

I thought the move from book to movie was seamless, as the cartoons in the book are brought to life in animated sequences and Greg is shown writing in the diary.  I haven't read the book and I'm much older than the target audience, but that didn't stop me from really enjoying the movie.  We don't usually go to the movies because it can get pricey, and I was relieved when I walked out of the theater and didn't regret spending money to see it.

I know you're all waiting to hear The Girl's (age 9) thoughts on the movie, especially since she's read the book, so here you go:

Did you like the movie?

Yes.  It was very funny.

Do you think they did a good job turning the book into a movie?  Was the movie much different than the book?

Yes they did a good job.  The movie was just like the book, and they brought the drawings in the book into the movie by showing Greg writing the diary.

A lot of the movie was the same as the book, like the “cheese touch,“ but some of it was different, like when Greg tries out for the Wizard of Oz and is offered the part of Dorothy.

Do you think they did a good job choosing real people to play the parts of characters you knew only as drawings in a book?

Yes.  And I like how they showed each actor with the drawing of the character they play from the book.

Any last thoughts on the movie?

I want you to buy the DVD when it comes out.  I think they should make the rest of the books into movies, too.  I think anyone who loves the book like I do should go see the movie.  They did a good job showing the importance of friendship.  And my favorite part of the movie was when Rowley showed up at Greg’s house on Halloween wearing a blinking light so he can be seen in the dark and Rodrick [Greg's older brother] tells them a scary story about kids being eaten.

Did any of you see the movie yet?  If so, tell us what you thought of it in the comments!

Disclosure: We forked over my hard-earned cash to see the movie.  The Girl received the book Diary of a Wimpy Kid as a gift.  I am an Amazon affiliate, and clicking on the above book cover image and links for the books will take you to my affiliate page.


© 2010, Anna Horner of Diary of an Eccentric. All Rights Reserved. Please do not copy or reproduce content without permission.


Mari said...

I really want to see this movie. I love the books as well. Glad to hear they did a good job with it.

Veens said...

I have not read this book but The Girl's enthusiasm is tickling me.. and I want to read and see the movie too. Thank You to her for this wonderful interview and thanks Anna for this review :)

Serena said...

Sounds like I missed some great fun! Darn it. I'm glad she enjoyed the movie, not that I had any doubts.

Chrisbookarama said...

I saw it too. I haven't read the books but really enjoyed the movie. It's definitely something adults can watch with kids without falling into a coma.

bermudaonion said...

Wow, it sounds like they did a great job with this one! I'm glad you and The Girl had a good time.

Unknown said...

We haven't seen the movie, yet. I am actually watching a TV segment with Jeff Kinney and the movie's stars as I type this!

I'm sure the movie will be in my future!

rhapsodyinbooks said...

I love her thoughts on the movie ("I want you to buy the DVD!") How cute! What I wonder is if kids who watch these movies think they themselves could ever memorize all the lines.

Cheryl said...

My daughter likes these books and she is 8. She would like to see the movie too. After reading your review, I definately will take her to see it. Thanks!

Ti said...

My son auditioned for this movie but since he did not get the part, he doesn't want to see it now. Poo. It was just an online audition and he is way too tall and hunky for the part. That's what I told him but I think he sort of grew out of the Wimpy Kid stuff.

Gwendolyn B. said...

Oh, that was fun! My nephew loves this series and he loved the movie, too. Who knew wimpiness would become so popular!

Alyce said...

My son loves the book but we haven't seen the movie. I think we'll probably netflix it for him when it comes out on dvd.

Anonymous said...

Glad you enjoyed it. My daughter could care less about the series, so we'll probably won't see the movie.

Suko said...

What a charming and positive review! :) I would love to see the movie, but I should probably read the books first.

Anna, you're a winner! Stop by my blog for details. . .

Wanda said...

My daughter sooooo wants to see this movie! Like you Anna, I haven't read the books though I've had numerous passages read (guffawed) out loud to me. Glad to hear the movie will be a treat! Thank-you both for a great review. :)

Darlene said...

Great interview with The Girl. I'm glad she liked the movie so much and that you did too!

Staci said...

You and The Girl have made me want to take my 15-year old and go see this one!!!

Kristen said...

My youngest saw this one for a birthday party. I think my older two want to see it as well though so I suspect that we'll be checking it out soon. Thanks for your review!

Sheila (Bookjourney) said...

You make the movie sound fun! I may have to see this one :)

Bookfool said...

I wish my son would let me interview him about books, He's 18, though, and can be a bit surly about being "used" so Mom will have something to write on the blog. That was really fun reading! I didn't even realize the books had been turned into a movie.

Luanne said...

Thank you to The Girl for her thoughts. This is a very popular book with my young patrons. It's good that the movie lived up to the book!

christina said...

I love this series and cannot wait to see the movie this week!

Anna said...

Mari: I'm thinking I need to read the other three books now. I hope you get a chance to see it, too.

Veens: She is very enthusiastic about the Wimpy Kid books, isn't she? Well, she did make me wait for a long time in the rain to get them signed at the National Book Festival!

Serena: We wish you could've come with us!

Chris: I couldn't agree more! Usually I die of boredom during kid movies, but not with this one.

Bermudaonion: Honestly, it totally exceeded my expectations.

Janel: Probably. :) Hope you enjoy it!

rhapsodyinbooks: I asked The Girl and she says memorizing all the lines would be easy. "I'm in the school play, Mom!" Then she rolled her eyes. LOL

cherylbaryl: Thanks for stopping by! Hope you both enjoy the movie as much as we did.

Ti: Too bad about the audition. I think it's neat he gave it a try, though.

Gwendolyn B.: Right! But I think we can all identify with Greg in some way.

Alyce: I would've waited, but with The Girl, waiting for this movie was NOT an option.

carolsnotebook: I think liking the series probably makes the movie more enjoyable.

Suko: Thanks! I think it would be okay to watch the movie first, but the books are a lot of fun.

Wanda: I read one of the books to The Girl when she was sick, and I couldn't stop laughing. I had to mark a few passages to show my hubby when he came home from work. LOL

Darlene: Thanks!

Staci: I hope you both enjoy it!

Kristen: I hope you enjoy it, too!

Sheila: It was a lot of fun. I don't think I would've seen it if The Girl hadn't been so excited about it, though.

Bookfool: The Girl is still at the age where it's fun. She loves to come back and read all the comments. She keeps begging me to let her have her own blog, but I told her she has to wait until she's older.

Luanne: The Girl says, "You're welcome!" :)

Christina: I hope you enjoy it!