I might be the only critic to compare Diary of a Wimpy Kid to Sex and the City, but bear with me, because Thor Freudenthal’s adaptation of the bestselling pre-teen/teen series by Jeff Kinney feels like a weird alternative universe where Jessica Parker’s Carrie (in all of her self-absorbed glory) is transformed into Greg (Zachary Gordon), a fresh-faced middle-school kid eager to become his own man in a world of posers and morons.
He has a gaggle of nerdy associates, although the movie doesn’t exactly establish a believable core friendship between Greg and anyone else, which I suppose rationalizes why he proves ready and willing to throw his ragtag crew under the bus at the drop of a hat.
But he, of course, comes to realize some key life lessons through journaling and his eventual willingness to look beyond his own self-interests.
The kid feature-length here felt like the Sex and the City movie — a move to stretch what works in half-hour segments beyond its (and its audience’s) acceptable limits. Hopefully these lessons will stick for Greg, because I don’t anyone wants to have to live through Sex Diary of a Wimpy Kid and the City. Grade: C