I always go to a movie on Saturday night. It’s an unwritten rule that if we are at home for the weekend, we go to a movie on Saturday night. I’m explaining this very carefully to you so that you will understand why I went to Diary of a Wimpy Kid.
I am well aware that it is based on the books of the same name and I am also well aware that it is intended for a middle school audience. But it was Saturday night…and we always go to a movie on Saturday night…and we had already seen the other movies at the theater.
I tried to ignore the fact that we were the oldest people there by 50 years. I also tried to ignore the fact that the previews for coming attractions had all the appeal of a kiss on the lips from my behind-licking dog.
The movie featured people who walked out of their black and white drawings and became a submissive father who can’t even tell his wife that he doesn’t have a week off; a mother who appeared to be high on life and whose main ambition was to remove the pacifier of technology from her family for a week; an elder son who could only be the antagonist of the piece with his goth hair and fixation on his band, the Loded Diper (it took me a while, but I got it); and a spoiled youngest child with a real pacifier fixation.
The star, of course, was the middle child, Greg, who kept landing in impossible situations like helping his younger brother win a pig at a random county fair, and also finding himself hiding in a shower while the man on the toilet outside the curtain was voiding his bowels, one suggestive splash at a time.
The older brother chowed down something that looked like batter-fried sticks of butter (four of them) and then proceeded to puke up something green that floated in the air on the high speed gravity ride before landing full in the face of the man next to him. It was at this point that I quit eating my popcorn…it’s still sitting in the theater, next to my unfinished drink.
The movie did have its clever moments…probably all lost on the hysterically giggling little girl somewhere behind me and many others in the theater who are not familiar with the work of Alfred Hitchcock. The extremely muddy Greg is showering (with his clothes on) in a strange motel room, when the actual owner of the room comes in and rips the shower curtain down with the accompanying “eek, eek, eek” music which made “Psycho” famous. There was even a camera shot of mud flooding down the drain in lieu of the blood from the Hitchcock classic. Then, later, Greg is attacked by a flood of birds he has tantalized with a bag of cheese curls as a nod to the Hitchcock thriller, “The Birds.”
The movie eventually ground its way to a close and the middle-schoolers were quite delighted, judging by the laughter. It was as I was sitting there, wondering about leaving that I recalled my father’s assessment of a movie he went to once that was much more indecent than he anticipated. “I didn’t need a bag over my head going in, but I sure wish I could have had one to keep people from seeing me leave.” If I had thought for one minute the popcorn bag would have fit over my head, I’d have walked out wearing a salt and butter hat. As it was, I had to leave with my face ducked down behind my upturned collar.
So, that is the story of my trip to the movies. I realize that, like the boy in the story, I am a little wimpy because I went to a middle-school movie rather than staying home and reading a book or something. Judge me if you wish. As for the movie…I think it’s pretty good. That is, if you like deep fried sticks of butter eaten by weak-stomached cell-phone addicts. If not, proceed at your own risk!
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