Ramona Quimby, on the Big Screen!

27 Jul

Ramona has been delighting readers for nearly half a century. It’s no surprise, then, that when the first movie based on Beverly Cleary’s beloved series is released, it’s Ramona—not her sister Beezus, or their friend, and first main character in the series, Henry Huggins— who gets top billing.  Ramona is a character that children find irresistible.  She’s daring and imaginative, a trouble-maker who’s misunderstood by her parents, her teachers, and especially by her older sister, Beezus.  When we meet Ramona in the new movie Ramona and Beezus (which released nationwide on Friday) she’s a precocious 9 and 3 month year old, whose best friend, Howie, lives next door.  She can’t seem to do anything right in the eyes of her teacher or her classmates and she’s known to throw tantrums and teach her baby sister how to stick out her tongue.  Basically, she’s much like a lot of little girls I know!

It’s for this reason that Beverly Cleary’s character is still so popular.  Ramona first appeared on the scene in 1955, but her antics are just as relatable today. It’s clear in the books, and in the movie, that Ramona is in the process of growing up, and is not quite ready to give up her childhood fantasies, something we can all relate to (even if I was more of an exasperated older sister like Beezus!)

The movie deftly combines several titles and story lines from the original series, and despite its name, actually deals mostly with one title, Ramona and Her Father.  The movie does touch on some tough issues, like Ramona’s father losing his job, her sister fumbling through her first real crush, and the possibility of having to move away from their childhood home.

All in all, it’s a movie that the whole family will enjoy, but it’s probably not suitable for children younger than seven due to its length, and the complexity of the plot.  Instead, I would recommend starting them on the series early – whether you read her aloud, or on your own, it will be very hard to resist smiling at the antics of this extraordinary little girl.

**Want to read more?  The original Beezus and Ramona with a new movie cover will be available from Book Clubs the first week of August!

Also, be sure to check out this Today Show interview with a quote from Scholastic Book Clubs President, Judy Newman, and a piece by our very own Scholastic Kid Reporter, Grace Choi, who visited the set of Ramona and Beezus a year ago!

4 Responses to “Ramona Quimby, on the Big Screen!”

  1. Beth @ TheAngelForever July 27, 2010 at 3:59 pm #

    I was lucky enough to take my boys to see a screening of Ramona and Beezus. The Ramona books were a childhood favorite of mine. As a teacher, I have often told parents to get them for reluctant readers. My son now wants to read them along with me. I will be looking for them in the upcoming catalogs to get them to share with the next generation.

  2. Rebecca July 27, 2010 at 5:14 pm #

    Awwww Ramona was my favorite when I was young. I need to break out those books and re-read them. I can’t wait until my daughter is old enough to read them. Can’t wait to see the movie!

  3. Patricia Cruzan July 27, 2010 at 10:33 pm #

    The students I used to teach loved the books by Beverly Cleary. I could relate to the antics of the different characters.


  1. Goldilicious and More Favorites! « Book Talk - August 19, 2010

    […] you all already know that we here at Book Talk adore Ramona. She’s the classic every girl, though sometimes she’s brave enough to say what some of us could […]

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