Five years on from the last Diary Of A Wimpy Kid movie (Dog Days) and the fourth film based on Jeff Kinney’s popular kids books gets a new cast, presumably because the child actors from the first movies are now college age.
It’s road trip time for Greg (Drucker), older brother Rodrick (Wright), baby Manny and their parents Frank (Scott) and Susan (Silverstone). They’re off to their grandmother’s 90th birthday party which means being stuck together in a car for about four days, an experience that is made all the more horrific for the boys (and dad) when mum decides it’s to be a smartphone-free trip. Of course, in true movie road trip style (see Planes Trains And Automobiles, National Lampoon’s Vacation, etc) what can go wrong does, and matters are not helped by Greg himself, who is planning a little detour to a games convention without telling his hapless parents.
Squarely aimed at the under-10s (some of the humour is so babyish it will horrify an 11-year-old) with its poop jokes and broad slapstick, this doesn’t have the charm of the first film in the series and rambles along expecting the audience to swallow some pretty daft plot contrivances (would dad really take a week off work without permission and not tell his wife?).
There are some funny moments for the very junior viewers, and the young cast fit the roles well (and look spookily like the original actors), but for adults the best thing about this movie is Alicia Silverstone’s performance as the mum who truly believes a road trip without technology won’t end up being an utter disaster.
Is Diary Of A Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul suitable for kids? Here are our parents’ notes...
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