The Garfield Movie – Film Review

Mondays. Initially, I didn’t understand what Garfield meant in the comics I read in newspapers as a kid when Garfield would exclaim with great passion that he hates Mondays. Well, that was until I grew up and joined the workforce. After over 20 years of working in an office environment, I’ve come to understand Garfield as a character even better as an adult. It has also been that long since Garfield had a feature length film.

But now Garfield is back with a whole new movie that is more an origin story and is completely animated. Titled ‘The Garfield Movie’, this follows our favourite lazy orange cat on a brand-new adventure. Voiced by Chris Pratt, we learn how he came to live with Jon, voiced by Nicholas Holt. As a kitten on the streets with his father Vic, voiced by Samuel L. Jackson, Garfield is seemingly left behind in a cold dark alley. Smelling the delicious food from the Italian restaurant opposite, Garfield makes his way to the venue meets Jon, and after eating up the entire menu, Garfield settles in as Jon’s new pet. Or, as Garfield puts it “how I adopted Jon.

However, it is when Vic returns years later, that the real adventure begins. Along with Odie, our favourite dog and cat duo set out on a seemingly impossible mission to save Vic from his past, with a heist at dairy location, Lactose Farms.

Over recent years, I must confess that I’ve somewhat grown tired of the films that star Chris Pratt. But this one pleasantly surprised me. Perhaps that is because it is a voice and not actual Chris Pratt on screen. His accurate portrayal of Garfield is funny, joyful but he also does well with the lazy persona that we’ve have all come to love about the character. Plus, the way he talks about food will most definitely make you hungry!

Samuel L. Jackson is great as Vic and his voice is the perfect match to the character. Other voice credits go to Hannah Waddingham as the villainous Persian cat, Jinx. I thoroughly enjoyed Waddingham’s take on the ‘bad guy’ role and Cecily Strong is equally as great as Lactose Farms’ evil security guard. Nicholas Holt is perfect as the ever worrisome and unconditionally loving pet owner, Jon. We also have Brett Goldstein and Bowen Yang as Jinx’s henchmen, Roland the Shar Pei and Nolan the whippet, respectively.

One of my favourite characters of this film doesn’t even say a word. Odie, wonderfully voiced by Harvey Guillén, has zero dialogue but expresses emotion and lines through a range of dog noises and perfectly animated expressions. I often found myself laughing more at Odie’s happenings in the background than I did at what was occurring in the foreground.

The other favourite comes at the hands of Ving Rhames as Otto, the bull that has been outcast from Lactose Farms. Not just because of how slick and wholesome the character is, nor the desire to be reunited with the one that he loves, but because of the very clever link to one of Rhames’ other film characters, Luther Stickell from Mission Impossible. I couldn’t contain my laughter when Otto was planning out the heist on the farm whilst the Mission Impossible theme was blatantly being played in the background, a move well played by Director Mark Dindal. In fact, there are a couple more links to Tom Cruise in the film that you will just have to discover for yourself.

2024’s The Garfield Movie has all the makings of a feel good, fun action flick with a wonderful redemption arc to round it out. The voice acting is fantastic, the music by John Debney is perfect and The Garfield Movie is an all-round fantastic film for all. Also, the film does provide detailed context on why he hates Mondays.

Whether you’re a lifetime fan of Garfield, a casual reader or have never seen anything of the world’s favourite orange cat before, you will enjoy The Garfield Movie. If you are deep into the Garfield lore though, there are plenty of little Easter eggs to look out for that many fans will deeply appreciate. The Garfield Movie is consistently enjoyable for all audiences and this is one film that will sure be a hit as it hits cinemas.

The Garfield Movie is in cinemas from May 30th.

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