What You Need To Know:
Full of wacky fun for the whole family, GARFIELD is the most family friendly movie so far this summer. The story is pretty much by-the-numbers, but the relationship between Garfield and Odie is a lot of fun. The computer animation brings Garfield wonderfully to life, and Bill Murray does a fine job of capturing the famous feline’s character. Garfield briefly sings a couple Christian hymns.
(BB, C, L, V, M) Moral worldview with redemptive aspects where character risks his safety to rescue a friend and cat briefly sings two Christian hymns with references to Jesus and heaven; two light obscenities, one light profanity, cat calls dog a “suck-up,” and “My Gosh” is said; some comic humor and light violence such as cat with claws out jumps on sleeping man, cat pushes dog off chair repeatedly, dog pushes cat off chair once, dogs chase cat and knock over things, cat falls through truck and lands in lasagna dinners, electric collar shocks villain twice, and villain uses electric collar to train dog; no sex; no nudity; no alcohol; no smoking; and, deceit and dognapping rebuked.
Garfield the cat, the world’s most popular comic strip character, comes to life on the big screen in GARFIELD THE MOVIE. Full of wacky fun for the whole family, it’s the most family friendly movie so far this summer.
The movie opens with a snoring Garfield waking up and leaping onto Jon, his sleeping owner, to wake Jon up to go to work. It soon becomes clear who’s the real master of this house. When a mouse shows up in the house, Garfield pretends to eat the mouse for Jon’s benefit, then releases the mouse, whose name is Louis, and admonishes it about keeping out of Jon’s sight so that Garfield can maintain his reputation.
Jon then takes Garfield to visit beautiful veterinarian Liz Wilson, on whom Jon has had a crush since high school. Liz is impressed with how well Jon takes care of Garfield and asks Jon to take home Odie, a lovable, energetic dog. This of course irks Garfield to no end, even though he teaches Odie to dance on his hind legs.
One night Garfield locks Odie out of the house, but Odie, friendly dog that he is, wanders away from home and ends up in the clutches of local cat trainer Happy Chapman. Happy, unhappily, happens to be allergic to cats and sees the dancing dog as his chance for true fame in New York.
Garfield feels guilty about being responsible for Odie running away. He manages to pull himself away from his favorite chair on an impossible mission: saving Odie.
The story in GARFIELD THE MOVIE is pretty much by-the-numbers, but the relationship between Garfield and Odie is a lot of fun. The computer animation brings Garfield wonderfully to life, and Bill Murray does a fine job of capturing the famous feline’s character. As Garfield’s creator, Jim Davis, remarks, Garfield is popular to people of all ages. Children enjoy his physical humor, teens enjoy his independent attitude, and adults like him because he relieves their guilt about over-eating, sleeping too much, not exercising, and being apathetic. Garfield is all of these things in this movie, but he also has the courage and independence to risk his comfort and help his new friend Odie when Odie gets into trouble. He even briefly sings a couple Christian hymns to comfort himself on his rescue mission.
GARFIELD THE MOVIE is appropriate family fare for all ages. There is a subplot about an electric shock dog collar that presents a problem, but the movie does not dwell on it.