Common Sense Note
Parents need to know that this adaptation of Jeff Kinney's best-selling Diary of a Wimpy Kid books is full of tween-friendly jokes and mischief. There are no full-blown swear words, but the dialogue includes a lot of insults like "moron," "idiot," "tool," "stupid" and the like, as well as the standard substitute for stronger words, "freakin'." Parents sensitive to scatological humor, beware! There are several jokes about boogers and farts, a few shots featuring kids on toilets (the middle-school boysroom has no doors on its stalls), and in one scene, the protagonist accidentally pees on his brother. While there's no frightening violence, there is a running theme about three older bullies who menace the main characters, and there's a girl who beats up a boy in front of the entire school. A rebellious seeming teen brother wears eyeliner, is in a garage band, and is caught with a naughty magazine (the cover only shows a woman in a bikini).
Rodrick has a (fictional) magazine called "Moto Mamas" which seems to be a skin mag of scantily clad women on motorcycles -- only the cover is shown. One middle-school boy is shown walking hand in hand with girls. Greg says he heard girls say a boy has a "cute butt." A few quick glimpses of kids sitting on toilets or peeing (no nudity, obviously).
A trio of teens bullies and menaces Greg and Rowley, obviously trying to hurt them. After evading them on several occasions, the bullies catch up to them and force Rowley to do something really gross. Rodrick threatens to kill Greg. A girl taunts and wrestles Greg and later beats him up in front of the whole school.
Frequently said insults include "dumb," "moron," "stupid," "clueless," "jerk," "tool," "idiot," "freakjob," and of course, "wimp." A couple uses of "crap" and "God" as an exclamation. The word "freakin'" is also said a few times. Also several scatalogical references to snot, boogers, and farting.
The biggest message of the story is what Greg's mother tells him: "It's our choices that make us who we are," meaning that even when we've messed up or failed, we still have an opportunity to choose to ask for forgiveness or to change. Rowley and Greg's friendship shows how important it is for friendships to be unconditional, regardless of how "popular" the other person seems to be, and how it's not OK to lie to your friend and let him get punished for something you did.
Nintendo's Wii console is mentioned and shown, as well as the video game Wii Play.
Drugs / Tobacco /