New faces in familiar story

Jeff Kinney’s series of cartoon novels have become worldwide hits because of their ability to capture readers of all ages. The same goes for the film series based on the fast sellers. Five years after its predecessor which happens to be the third in the series and titled 'Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days' comes ‘Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul' with a completely different cast taking over the roles.

Fans of the series might not welcome this move as the previous cast fitted into the skins of the characters so we’ll. However, since five years is a long hiatus, it is understandable why the filmmakers decided to replace Zachary Gordon with Jason Druckeras the hapless middle schooler Greg as Zachary must have outgrown his character. However, it is sad to see a reboot of the entire cast and this might not go down well with the fans.

Though the film’s do not religiously follow the novels, we see some geniuses at work with the scripts. At times the film’s outdo the books in their witty humour and non-stop action. Following a series of harmless amusement scenarios, this episode sees the Heffley family on the road to visit Susan’s mother on her 90th birthday. However, Greg has other plans to make a little detour at the Player's Expo videogame convention. Soon Greg's brother Rodrick sniffs out his plans and Greg roped him into the plan so that he can win some bucks after showcasing his drumming skills.

Greg is also determined to repair the damage done to his reputation by an embarrassing incident taking place at Corny’s Family-Style Restaurant that has gone viral. He figures that appearing in gamer Mac Digby’s next YouTube video would make people forget all about his “Diaper Hand” meme.

The issue is, mom Susan, on a mission to boost quality family time, has confiscated all electronics devices, replacing them with good-old-fashioned sing-alongs, word games and a visit to a quaint county fair. To add oil to troubled waters Greg makes enemies with another family on a road trip under unfortunate circumstances and ends up with them in hot pursuit on various occasions.David Bowers who has directed the previous two film’s is now an expert at making maximum use of the running time to bring on the laughs in every possible episode. The only drawback is that unlike it’s previous movies, some of the humour is almost slapstick in 'The Long Haul'.

‘The Long Haul’ is a good choice if you want a good dose of entertainment but if you really want some quality fun and plenty of laughs, then go for the first three film’s 'Diary of a Wimpy Kid', 'Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Rodrick Rules', and 'Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days'.

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