With stick figures and crisply funny journal entries, Jeff Kinney's cartoon series breathed fresh life into pre-teen lit's most exhausted trope—the twisted tribal etiquette of middle school. Screenwriters Jackie and Jeff Filgo's respect for Kinney's sharply observant dialogue is the chief virtue of this fairly capable screen version. But the transition to live action is, stylistically, a trip to the ordinary in the hands of director Thor Freudenthal (though it's still a step up from... More >>>