Sign in using your account with
Diary of a Wimpy Kid: It’s not a Diary, It’s a Film
Diary of a Wimpy Kid is the kind of film that you’d wish you had seen when you were twelve. Its spasticity captures the extremist mindset of a young boy, where the smallest problem can be inflated into the direst of life-or-death situations. The film does this through the upbeat and good-natured chronicles of Greg Heffley (Gordon), the wimpy kid in question.
The stick-figure drawings on which the film was based work well as animation and spastic characterisation. Heffley, his family and friends don’t come across as real people; even kids won’t be fooled by them. However, the lively window that the film opens is enchanting and filled with middle school flair, making it nonetheless enjoyable.
Heffley is a kid with grand delusion about the magnitude of his own awesomeness. He is jittery about starting middle school and has set his mind on becoming one of the cool kids. Heffley’s selfish quest finds him pulling one stunt after another to gain attention, but the kid’s fleeting grasp of his own reality leads him in the opposite direction. Instead of climbing the ladder of popularity, Heffley fumbles again and again, slipping into the pit of humiliation. He even abuses his best friend Rowley (Capron) to get his way. By the end of the film, he’s left alone with nothing to face but his own vanity.
At times, Diary of a Wimpy Kid falls victim to its own childish outlook, throwing fart and booger jokes to secure some easy laughs; yet the film balances the juvenile outbursts with some cross-crowd appealing hilarity. Not to say that the film works on any mature level; this is the cinematic equivalent of a loopy brat on a sugar high.
The moral centre of Diary of a Wimpy Kid doesn’t get in the way of its turbo-driven, colourful story. There is no spoon feeding here, no pauses to recap the lessons learned. Even when Heffley gives his final revelatory speech; it’s met by jeers and boos. Both cynical and reaffirming , this film is fun, funny and heartfelt; s a charming family flick that we can all enjoy.
She wakes up from her coma to a husband who she doesn’t remember and parents who are overjoyed that she’s forgotten about their dispute. While Paige’s parents try to bring her back to the way of life that she’d rebelled against, Leo tries to help her remember why she’d left all that behind in the first place. Fighting for a wife who doesn’t remember him and is a completely different person than the one he knew, Leo tries to get her to fall in love with him again.
The film rarely gets unbearably cheesy, setting it apart from your run of the mill Sparks adaptation. It gets mushy, emotional and sappy, but it’s more likely to make you smile than roll your eyes. Leo’s pain and heartbreak combined with Paige’s family’s delight at having their daughter back, gives the film a level of grit that keeps it from becoming overly cloying. However, the secret of the film’s success is the leads, who have great chemistry and manage to pass off some of the cheesiness as bearable.
While some may argue that originality is dead, no genre is more vulnerable to that notion than comedy, which has always been prevalent in Egyptian Ramadan TV. One only has to look to polarising TV personality and prankster, Ramez Galal.
Appearing for the fifth consecutive time on TV screens during Ramadan, Galal’s latest shenanigans present nothing new – in fact, one could argue that this year’s show, Ramez Wakel El Gaw, is one of the poorest yet; even the opening credits have come to be uniform. A grand orchestral intro makes way for nonsense music with nonsense lyrics. Galal – who lends his vocals to the opening credits – begins each episode in the same way, weaving in some banter at the expense of the celebrity that he’s about to prank.
The concept of the show is that each unsuspecting victim is summoned to a mystery business meeting in Dubai via plane. The prank? It's simple: convince the celebrity in question that the plane is experiencing engine failure and that they are about to die? Tasteless? Maybe. Unfunny? Almost certainly. Galal and co also pepper the celebrity’s ride with smaller, more infantile mini-pranks – serving strange-tasting coffee and spewing unpleasant odours in the plane.
As mentioned, the main prank itself is significantly weaker and cruder than that in previous series. In addition, episodes are shorter, while the show misses the opportunity in making the most of their guests – a sit-down and interview would give the show much more value, for examples. In fairness, however, the disguises and make-up that Galal uses during the pranks isn’t half-bad and there’s a certain guilty pleasure in seeing what he’ll look like in the next episode.
As always, the pay off in a show like this is how the celebrity responds to the revelation of the prank and this series has thus far seen some pretty angry and over-the-top reactions, with one particular episode featuring former belly-dancing star and actress, Lucy, requiring an inordinate amount of bleeping. Galal was even the victim of a pretty firm kicking at the hands of another unimpressed guest.
Galal shows have always received criticism, but viewing figures have always proven the popularity of them; like him or loathe him, people are always talking about him. This year, though, despite Paris Hilton featuring in an upcoming episode, there isn’t as much buzz; this is partly because of the emergence of other Ramadan prank shows, but could Egypt finally be tiring of his antics? Only time will tell.