My eldest was already familiar with the Middle School books so was absolutely delighted that the Middle School film was now available on Netflix. We were sent the books and some tasty popcorn to celebrate the release.
Eldest has read Middle School The Worst Years Of My Life already and its one story he is quite keen on.
But the fact its on Netflix will probably make him even more eager to get stuck into the other books in the series.
The boys were laughing out loud throughout the film. It was hilarious and very easy for them to follow. Much like the book you have lots of jokes and silly drawings coming to life. Rafe has such a big imagination!
You quickly start to feel sorry for Rafe dealing with his mum’s mean boyfriend at home. He seems to prefer his car to Rafe and his sister and is constantly calling him a loser. His main aim is to try and ship Rafe off to military school!
Then he has all the issues of adjusting to a new school. His last chance after being expelled from the last two! Here is a strict principal who thinks art should be locked in a museum for old people to enjoy! That’s difficult for Rafe to stomach given his creativeness! Then it’s all the never-ending rules “sucking the fun out of childhood”.
The tipping point was seeing his beloved notebook destroyed in a bucket of acid (and with it so many special memories!). On top of that you have the class bully offering to give Rafe a wedgie so hard he would taste his underwear!!! Given all of this starting in his new school is hardly a bundle of laughs. It seems impossible dealing with all of this whilst still trying to come to terms with his brothers death. It’s hardly surprising a poo emote sums up his day.
Rafe decides to get pay back and shred the principal’s rulebook. We all liked watching his pranks. You warm to Rafe despite his mischievous behaviour, the principal deserves everything he gets. He only wants the children to be taught to the test, so he gets better results. He has no interest in their individuality he just wants them to pass the BLAAR assessment at all costs!
The film is very entertaining even us grownups had a few giggles. “Its gone bacterial” – instead of viral being one of them. The story has a sad undercurrent with the story of Rafe’s brother who died from cancer. I don’t want to give everything away but watch Rafe interacting with his best friend Leo early on in the film (I missed that completely, hubbie picked up on it though!).
My eldest thought they included everything and more in the translation of book to film, although he did say that the mum hurt her wrist in the book because of the nasty boyfriend. He pushed her and she fell badly. So there are some variations but both are enjoyable in their own right and the essence of the book is cleverly captured.
Verdict of the Movie
So the boys final verdict of the Middle School Movie:
Eldest (9) said “super good film”
Youngest (7) said “ultimately good” (which is apparently a bigger compliment than EPIC!).
The books “Get Me Out of Here!” and “My Brother is a Big, Fat Liar” mean our time with Rafe isn’t yet over thankfully. Hopefully these will also be made into films, they really are great books.
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