Box art for Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days

Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days

children & family, comedy

After finishing the 7th grade, "wimpy kid" greg heffley looks forward to playing video games all summer, but since his father expects him to make better use of his time.

Rotten Tomatoes® scores

  • Critic Score
  • Audience Score

common sense

ON for kids age 9
2 out of 5
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
0 out of 5
1 out of 5
Positive messages
2 out of 5
Positive role models
3 out of 5
1 out of 5
1 out of 5

More Wimpy Kid fun mixed with worthy messages, potty humor.

what parents need to know

Parents need to know that the third adaptation in the series of movies based on Jeff Kinney's phenomenally popular Diary of a Wimpy Kid books is, like its two predecessors, full of the kind of physical and scatological comedy that tweens love. Language includes standard insults like "loser" and "jerk," and the violence is of the humorous ball-in-the-groin variety, with one potential jump scene when an adult scares kids during a campout. Parents wary of bathroom humor should know there are many jokes about pee, farts, boogers, dog spit, etc. There's a brief glimpse at a boy sitting on the toilet and an extended men's locker room sequence in which a lead character tries to avoid looking at all the fat, hairy, and shirtless men toweling off or taking showers. Overall, the movie (like the book) has a sweet message about father-son bonding and being honest.

what families can talk about

  • Families can talk about how the various parent-child relationships are portrayed in Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days. Which parents are more believable -- the Heffleys or the Jeffersons? How does the relationship between Greg and his dad change?
  • Why are movies aimed at tween boys filled with so much potty humor? Are the fart and booger jokes necessary? Do girls like this kind of humor, too?
  • Rowley is a fiercely loyal friend to Greg, but is Greg always a good friend to Rowley? What does Greg do to redeem himself to Rowley?
  • Fans of the books: How does the movie compare to the Dog Days novel? Which characters were different or new? Did you like the changes?

movie reviews from Rotten Tomatoes®

Audience Reviews

3 stars

I have happily watched the first two Wimpy Kids, and I feel it's important to tell you that I enjoyed them both. They were never going to win any awards, but they always have a good message behind them and always provide a satisfying ending for a family film. I must say, I think this one is the best of the three. It has moments where I was having a good chuckle to myself and other moments where I really felt bad for the kid. The writing is the strength, it never feels awkwardly written, it feels current and not like a 40 year old is trying to write like a kid. The kids have gotten better too, especially Zachary Gordon who has come a long way from his first outing. Overall, if you didn't like the first two, you won't like this, but your kids will and I for one shamefully enjoyed it just as much as they did.

- Peandpi, Saturday, August 18, 2012

2 stars

There is more of the same here although I was never repulsed by some of the humor in this third Wimpy Kid enstallment (sigh of relief). "Wimpy Kid" Greg Heffley finds himself without much to do at the beginning of summer and has to find ways to fill his schedule to avoid boring book clubs dreamed up by his mother or crazed outdoor adventures planned by his father. This story focuses more on Greg and two of his classmates as he spends most of the summer at the local country club sipping fruit smoothies and taking up tennis. I don't really understand the appeal of Greg as he comes across as quite self-centered; but he isn't as reprehensible as many teens in film today. He ends up having a moral compass at least. It might be a lot of "me, me, me" but he ends up thinking about others too. This is perfectly watchable family fare ... unlike so many other comedies aimed at this target audience.

- ThomasJayWilliams, Tuesday, November 27, 2012

3 stars

Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days is the third installment in the film series based on the popular books, and is another harmless and silly addition that proves to be fun. These films are a guilty pleasure of mine, they prove to just be silly and fun and it really has a group of fun characters and jokes that will amuse both the young and old alike. The main problem with this series is that it is filled with many clichs and some jokes that are ridiculously gross. I mean I am not expecting some big masterpiece like The Godfather or Schindler's List, but I wish they could just get rid of some of the disgusting jokes that keep this from being a great series for kids. I laughed a lot during this film, which surprised me because I was expecting this to be annoying and childish, but it turned out to be silly and childish, which worked for me. It has the same kind of humor and story as the first two films and I really enjoyed that about it. I love the characters in this film, mainly because it seems like they have so much fun writing for these lovable guys and the scenes with Greg and Rowley together really shine. I honestly don't have a character that I dislike in this series; they all just make it so colorful and fun. I hope they still make sequels to this series because I still really enjoy it, even if the gross humor is totally unnecessary. The story follows Greg Heffley (Zachary Gordon) during his summer vacation and his antics again go crazy. He spends time at Country Club with his best friend Rowley (Robert Capron) while trying to impress his crush Holly Hills. In the meantime, his father Frank (Steve Zahn) tries to get his to spend his summer doing some physical, but Greg has plans to just play video games. Greg will have to do everything he can to make his summer as fun as possible. The plot of this film is pretty much an hour and a half of just silliness and fun stuff going on between the characters, and it actually worked for me. This series really doesn't have any storyline going on, each film is just a silly and fun time and it works for me. I love watching the characters and all the stuff they go through, and you can't help but love each of them because they are good hearted people and we can relate to one of them. If you have read the books like I have, than you must know that the books really don't have a storyline either so we just sit back and enjoy watching Greg Heffley's life and how he is annoyed by everything, everyone, and believe he is the smartest person of his friends and family. Greg is a funny kid, I mean he is a smartalick but we love him because of that and it just makes him an enjoyable hero. I love Greg's father in this film, I mean he was hilarious and watching his overreact was priceless, but maybe that was because of the hilarious performance from Steve Zahn. Rodrick looks like he is always on drugs, and it really just cracks me up with how big of a stereotype he is for bad boys in a rock band. Rowley was still funny for me; however he is getting a bit creepy in some parts as it seems he is in love with Greg more than being his friend. It just warms up my heart when seeing these characters, and they really make this series enjoyable to its fullest. The cast consists of some really funny young actors and even the adults get a large share of the laughs this time around. It seems to me that these guys have so much fun when making the films, which makes it twice as fun for me to watch. Zachary Gordon is very likable and believable for this character, and he has proven to be a funny and enjoyable young actor throughout this series. David Bostick is perfect for a role like Rodrick; he pulls off the clich bad boy and really just makes me laugh at everything he does in the film. Robert Capron is like a miniature version of Chris Farley, and I think that if he is still likable in the next 20 years that he may become a very popular comedian. Steve Zahn stole the show with this film and I loved his performance the most. There is one scene where he is going crazy and tries to unplug the television from the video games, and I couldn't stop laughing. You know a cast is pure fun when you can tell they had as much fun making the film as you had when watching. Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days is not a great movie but I still had fun watching and I think that is the important thing in a film like this. There were some very ridiculous jokes in the film that they could've taken out, and many huge clichs that made me just roll my eyes. In a film like this we can expect a lot of clichs, but I don't understand why we need that. I mean it felt like they really could've had a great kid's movie here that appealed to all audiences but sadly they had to put in some disgusting and dumb jokes that will turn many older audience members off. The kids will adore it, and I enjoyed it as well, but there were many things that were just too unnecessary. It does the book its justice and I love watching them bring the animation from the books to life in some scenes. David Bowers directed this film and the previous film, and he has proven to me that he can make a very enjoyable and colorful with a lot of silly laughs that make it fun for me to watch. I can understand why some people would dislike a film like this, but I consider this a harmless and fun summer movie that just adds on to the film series that I have come to actually enjoy.

- fb1526363679, Saturday, August 4, 2012