Living Large in Southern Cal
Release Date: June 04, 2010
Starring: Lee Pace, Judy Greer and
William H. Macy; and, the
Voices of Owen Wilson, George
Lopez, Kiefer Sutherland,
Fergie, Emma Stone, Marlon
Wayons, Damon Wayans, Jr., Sam
Elliott, Steve Coogan, and
Audience: Older children to adults
Runtime: 103 minutes
Distributor: 20th Century Fox/News Corp.
Director: Tom Dey
Executive Producer: Arnon Milchan, Tariq Jalil,
Jeffrey Stott, and Derek
Producer: John Davis
Writer: Tim Rasmussen and Vince Di
Address Comments To:Rupert Murdoch, Chairman/CEO, News Corp.
Chase Carey, President/COO, News Corp.
Tom Rothman and Jim Gianopulos, Chairmen/CEO
Fox Filmed Entertainment
20th Century Fox Film Corp. (Fox Searchlight Pictures and Fox Atomic)
10201 West Pico Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90035
Phone: (310) 369-1000
The movie opens with Marmaduke, voiced by the talented, personable comic actor Owen Wilson, cleverly introducing viewers to his family, the Winslows. The family includes Dad Phil, Mother Debbie, young teenage daughter Barbara, brother Brian, little Sarah, and Carlos the cat, Marmaduke’s “step-bro.” Marmaduke compares himself to the tall skinny kid in high school who doesn’t quite fit.
Phil moves Marmaduke, Carlos and the family from Kansas to Southern California, where he’s taken a job in Southern California as the new marketing guru for an organic pet food company. Don, Phil’s new boss, insists on having a business meeting in the dog park. Marmaduke explains that a dog park is like high school for dogs. Don’s collie, Jezebel, is the girlfriend of the leader of the snooty purebred dogs, Bosco, the group’s alpha male. The other dogs include the Jocks, who like to chase Frisbees, the Drama Geeks, who like to perform for their owners, and the stoner dogs, who eat mushrooms growing near trees. Because he’s not a purebred, Marmaduke finds himself stuck with the mixed breeds, the Mutts, led by Mazie, a Queensland Heller Mix.
Trying to fit in and get closer to Jezebel, Marmaduke uses Carlos to fake a fight with a cat. Eventually, Marmaduke succeeds in ousting Bosco from being the alpha dog, but he throws a wild party for the dogs at the house when the Winslows go away for the weekend. The other dogs wreck the house, and Bosco exposes Marmaduke’s fake cat fight. Then, when the family returns home, Phil banishes Marmaduke to the doghouse.
Marmaduke decides to run away. The next morning, Phil must decide whether to skip an important meeting at work, or help the family look for Marmaduke.
MARMADUKE has a really clever, hilarious opening that sets the stage for the rest of the movie. The voice cast does a marvelous job, especially Own Wilson as Marmaduke and George Lopez as Carlos. The movie lags a bit in the middle when it forgets Marmadukle’s family and concentrates too much on Marmaduke’s relationship with the other dogs, but the third act is exciting and heartwarming when both Phil and Marmaduke’s lives are endangered by a sinkhole caused by a water main breaking and creating a flood.
MARMADUKE contains some scatological jokes, including jokes about juvenile delinquent dogs urinating into cups and on couches, and two jokes about Marmaduke passing gas in the parents’ bedroom. There are also brief drug jokes about the clique of dogs eating mushrooms in the dog park and about Marmaduke and Carlos being tranquilized before they take the airplane ride to California. So, MOVIEGUIDE® issues a caution to parents of younger children.
Otherwise, however, MARMADUKE is relatively free of objectionable content. It also has a strong positive worldview stressing the importance of supporting and helping one’s family and friends. Marmaduke also learns a lesson about not becoming too conceited and self-absorbed. And, the father learns a lesson about preventing his job from leading him to neglect his family commitments. There are many movies these days about fathers learning such lessons, because today’s modern, secular socialist society has spent so much time attacking the biblical notion that husbands are supposed to be the head of the household (Ephesians 5:22-33). By attacking this Christian, biblical principle from God so strongly, modern society foments chaos and confusion within men, women, children, families, and itself.
Aided by its talented voice cast, MARMADUKE has a really clever, hilarious opening that sets the stage for the rest of the movie. The movie lags somewhat when it forgets Marmaduke’s family and concentrates too much on Marmaduke’s relationship with the other dogs, but the third act is exciting and heartwarming when Phil and Marmaduke’s lives are endangered. MARMADUKE has very brief foul language, some scatological humor about canine habits, and a couple jokes about dogs getting high on eating mushrooms and being tranquilized before airplane rides.