Oh the trials and tribulations of growing up. That is doubled if you have an older brother. A horror for some. A riotous laugh for those of us watching it on screen. This is a coming of age tale that parents can watch with their kids, enjoy, have the odd giggle or two at, and not think that certain scenes should have been taken out. Safe fun for every age.
Greg (Zachary Gordon – Diary of a Wimpy Kid, National Treasure: Book of Secrets) is now in 7th grade. Though he is getting to be a little older he is still being tormented by his older brother, Rodrick (Devon Bostick – Adoration, Saw VI). Rodrick torments while Greg blames Rodrick for everything. It makes for a fight filled Heffley household.
Greg’s mother (Rachael Harris – The Hangover, The Soloist), who writes an advice column in the local paper, is fed up with the constant fighting, so she tells them that they are no longer allowed to with the family on their weekend trip to the waterpark. They’ve got to stay home and work out their differences. Before they head out the door their dad (Steve Zahn – You’ve Got Mail, Sahara) tells them they are not allowed anyone over.
As soon as they’re out the door Rodrick starts organizing a party. After the wild party, the boys get a call from their mother. They are coming home early as their little brother Manny (Connor and Owen Fielding) is sick.
The brothers manage to clean up the house before their parents get home. Rodrick gets Greg to promise to “deny, deny, deny”. As much as he wants to Greg cannot lie when his mother asks him about the missing lock on the bathroom door. She does, however, agree not to tell Rodrick that he caved or dad about the party. Because of the bond of lies, the brothers start getting along. Rodrick is actually nice to Greg and gives him advice on a myriad of subjects.
All starts to go downhill when dad finds pictures of the party on the family camera. He finds out mom knew and Rodrick finds out that Greg told. Now things between the brothers are worse than before.
Though the film is set in the present it totally has an 80s feel to it. Especially during the roller skating scene. While watching I almost got a nostalgic feeling. It is like a film of my younger days. They don’t make ‘em like this anymore. Parents of young ones will like that aspect while younger viewers will eat up the silly scenes like Greg running through an old folks’ retirement community in only his tighty whities. Silly harmless fun.
Though I won’t over emphasize it, this is a more involved film than the first one. The first was just full of silliness. The second has more depth to it and character development. But again not TOO much. You have more of the Rodrick character (he’s likable in a mean older brother kind of way) and get to see the relationship between older and younger brothers. Antagonistic to say the least.
Don’t go into the film expecting sophisticate humour or story and you will find yourself enjoying it. For older folks, if you set your expectations at the level of 80s television sitcom then you will enjoy it.
There are three more books in the series…like Harry Potter they gotta film them fast before the actors get too old.
-My Summer Vacation
-Sneak Peeks of Gulliver’s Travels, The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, Arthur and the Invisibles 2 and 3