8 January 2013 7:46 AM, PST | HollywoodChicago.com | See recent HollywoodChicago.com news »

Chicago – Most former kids can agree that junior high is pure hell. It’s the dividing line between the carefree bliss of elementary school and the budding maturity of high school. Suddenly kids are faced with a decision: either assert their dominance over the weakest of their peers or risk joining them. Become a bully or be bullied. Neither option is enticing.

Jeff Kinney’s “Diary of a Wimpy Kid” book series connected with young readers who related to its awkward protagonist, Greg Heffley, whose misadventures were conveyed through a cheerful amalgamation of journal entries, illustrations and comics. The film adaptations, however, have been more interested in capturing Kinney’s broadly comic sensibility rather than his nuggets of truth. Instead of illuminating the humanity within Kinney’s caricatures, the films exploit their quirks in nauseatingly cynical fashion.

Blu-ray Rating: 1.5/5.0

What laughs are there to be gleaned from a fat kid »

- adam@hollywoodchicago.com (Adam Fendelman)

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