by Devin Bock
One of the funniest things about the movie, Diary of a Wimpy Kid, is that Greg Heffley has made being a wimpy kid (his way) kind of cool just like the book!
Greg Heffley, played by Zach Gordon is small and skinny like his book character, but with a face full of moveable emotions. He is bright and always trying to explain himself.
He acts wimpy at times with a knit or puzzled brow, quivering lip, or semi-defeated look. But, in his sneaky, self-conscious, self-centered way he is always on the move to stir things up in his intro to his middle school years.
I was fortunate enough to attend the premiere at the Ziegfield Theatre in New York City after interviewing Zachary Gordon, 11, who plays Greg Heffley and Robert Capron, 11, who plays Rowley Jefferson. Over 900 kids were bused from schools throughout the New York City area to attend the premiere.
There were waves of laughter that tickled the entire audience as kids sat taking in every moment. With over 25 million copies of Diary of a Wimpy Kid selling around the world kids have already related.
But, could they pull off a movie based on a funny stick figure like Kid's diary? I think they did!
I think they have captured the feeling of trying to be accepted and being cool enough. There is also the age old subject of being picked on.
Zach Gordon has called his character, Greg, “a likeable jerk” that is just too self-centered. But, we see Greg grow and he gets to know himself better in his own way by all the injustices and annoyances he feels are thrown his way. And, he can always use his colorful and zany imagination to fantasize and escape!
Robert Capron plays Greg's best friend Rowley Jefferson in the movie. His pleasant looking grinning character is just the right balance for the highly energized Greg. Rowley's presence is rock steady. He is sympathetic to a point, but even he has his limits with Greg.
In this movie you might relate to his older bother rocker Rodrick complete with Goth makeup played by Devon Bostick whose chief purpose in life seems to be to terrorize and disturb his younger brother.
You can probably relate to the cast of characters in his school. There is Angie played by Chloe Moretz who is beautiful, but wise cracking beyond her years.
Greg's arch enemy Patty Farrell played by Laine MacNeil is funny in her stiff and proper but scheming manner. Fregley is played perfectly by Grayson Russell. From his large nerdy glasses, red hair and pale skin to his braces and ear to ear smile dressed in mismatched clothes of pajama type materials he is too funny.
From Greg's wrestling defeats, to his unexpected part in The Wizard of Oz to Halloween horrors and losing your best friend and trying everything to win him back again Zach Gordon is right on the mark as Greg Heffley.
And, we can't forget the Cheese Touch, a middle school ritual that is almost too gross to be funny when it takes on a life of its own.
I recommend this movie to kids of all ages. It lets you know you're not alone in trying to fit in and be cool but not to lose yourself in the process.
I give it ***** Five Stars! COMING UP: Read my interviews with writer Jeff Kinney, actors Zachary Gordon and Robert Capron and producers Nina Jacobson and Brad Simpson.