Diary of a Wimpy Kid appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.85:1 on this Blu-Ray Disc. I thought the image looked fine but unexceptional.
Sharpness was generally positive. At times, I noticed a bit of softness, especially in wider shots. Still, the majority of the flick looked pretty concise and distinctive. No issues with jagged edges or moiré effects occurred, and edge enhancement was absent. I also failed to detect any source flaws.
In terms of colors, the movie featured a natural palette that favored a slight golden tone. Across the board, the hues looked positive. They showed nice clarity and breadth and came out well. Blacks were dark and deep, while shadows appeared clear and smooth. The occasional softness created some distractions, but the transfer usually seemed solid.
I thought that the DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack of Wimpy Kid worked fine but it didn’t excel because of a lack of ambition. Like most comedies, the movie featured a limited soundfield that favored the forward channels. It showed nice stereo spread to the music as well as some general ambience from the sides.
Panning was decent, and the surrounds usually kicked in basic reinforcement. A few scenes opened up better, though, such as when the flick entered into fantasy territory; those sequences boasted involving material. A rainstorm also boasted nice breadth. However, most of the movie stayed with limited imaging.
Audio quality appeared good. Speech was natural and distinct, with no issues related to edginess or intelligibility. Effects sounded clean and accurate, with good fidelity and no signs of distortion. Music was perfectly fine, as the score and songs showed positive dimensionality. This track was good enough for a “B“ but didn’t particularly impress.
When it comes to supplements, we launch with an audio commentary from director Thor Freudenthal and writer Gabe Sachs. Both chat together for this running, screen-specific take on story issues and adapting the source material, cast, characters and performances, sets and locations, visual choices, production design and costumes, various effects, music and other notes from the shoot.
While never especially scintillating, Freudenthal and Sachs toss out a reasonably engaging commentary. The director dominates and we get a good general overview of different subjects. The track peters out a bit as it goes, but it still covers its topics in a satisfying manner.
We find lots of footage under Deleted Diary Pages. This area provides 10 segments: “Fregley’s Scavenger Hunt” (2:56), “Chirag’s Trail of Tears” (2:37), “Fregley’s Shuffle” (0:47), “Mom Drops Greg Off at School” (0:55), “Greg and Rowley Jump Over the Wall” (0:26), “Mr. Winsky’s Safety Patrol Assignment” (0:23), “Mom Suggests a Friendship Card” (0:44), “Greg Meets Fregley’s Mom” (0:37), “Greg Has The Cheese Touch” (0:38), “Rowley’s Lost Zow-Wee Mama Cartoons” (five frames).
Note that clips four through nine are the only actual “deleted scenes”. The first three are video clips I guess were meant as little teasers for the movie; I don’t know where they were used, but they offer video testimonials from the characters and clearly were never intended to be in the theatrical flick. These aren’t great, but they’re enjoyable. In addition, “Cartoons” shows five frames of Rowley’s art. They’re quite amusing in a stupid way.
As for the six true deleted scenes, they’re mostly negligible. “Touch” is the most interesting, as it shows the aftermath of Greg’s big decision. It’s not a bad capper; I’d be curious to know why it got the boot.
A few ads open the disc. We get clips for Ramona and Beezus, The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, Marley and Me: The Terrible 2s and Marmaduke. The trailer for Kid also pops up here, and we also get promos under Sneak Peeks. That domain tosses in previews for Tooth Fairy and Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief.
A second disc offers a DVD Copy of Kid. This appears to be the same disc that you’d buy commercially, not a “dumbed down” one intended just for this set. If you want to own Kid but aren’t yet Blu-ray capable, it’s a good bonus.
Finally, a third platter provides a Digital Copy of the movie. This allows you to transfer the film to a computer or portable gadget. And there you go!
Inside the Blu-ray’s slip case, you’ll find Diary of an Awesome, Friendly Kid, a look at Rowley’s diary. Basically this shows us what a little turd Greg is through Rowley’s dewy fresh eyes. It’s funnier than the actual movie.
Though the books on which it was based tend to be pretty unsentimental, the cinematic Diary of a Wimpy Kid lacks similar bite. It still offers decent entertainment; I just wish it’d come across as a little edgier. The Blu-ray provides good picture and audio along with a reasonably useful set of supplements. Though more enjoyable than I expected, the movie fails to live up to its source material.