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Overall Rating

Awesome: 6.32%
Worth A Look: 7.37%
Average: 18.95%
Pretty Bad: 8.42%
Total Crap58.95%

5 reviews, 65 user ratings

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Garfield: The Movie
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by Jason Whyte

"I'd say 'Kitty Litter' here, but 'Cat In The Hat' reviews already did that."
1 stars

"Garfield: The Movie" is an inexplicable experience, an awful blend of poorly translating a famous comic strip into an 80-minute feature film. It kills a comic strip I like by turning it into every other kid's movie out today, with enough fart gags, pummels and bad effects work to make it just another one of those family movies that makes you long for a Miyazaki or John Lasseter.

The story involves John (Breckin Meyer) who is a writer and an animal lover. His cat is Garfield (voiced by Bill Murray...yep, Bill Murray!), who is fat and lazy and loves Lasagna. Even John's vet Liz (Jennifer Love Hewitt) thinks so, "But there's nothing wrong with him." When Liz gets John to adopt a dog named Odie, there is, of course, animosity rising between the chubby feline and the kind pup. The "plot" takes off when a TV host (Stephen Toblowsky, who I will never forget as "Ned...RYERSON!!!" in "Groundhog Day") discovers that Odie has dog-show talents (standing and jumping in the air, mostly) and tries to steal him.

This sets Garfield and a few of his animal friends off on an adventure to find him, sending him into the city to find the TV guru. Meanwhile John and Liz are, of course, falling for each other because movies like this require two bumbling idiots to get together and make every child in the audience go "Ewww!" when they kiss. There's hardly an original idea in this movie...but there ARE Wendy's product placements. That's original.

Garfield is a CG creation; obviously the filmmakers saw "The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers" and thought that if Peter Jackson and WETA could do a perfectly realized Gollum, then why not an oversized orange cat? Every second the cat is on screen, Garfield looks, sounds and moves unnaturally with the rest of the action. (There's not one, but TWO scenes where Garfield dances to James Brown's "I Feel Good") Naturally the filmmakers could argue back and say that the animated angle is a throwback to the animated panels, but that doesn't explain the rest of the real animals in the film that look like audition rejects from "Babe" with animated lips.

The film never explains that if Garfield speaks, and John can't hear him speak, then does John see Garfield's lips and face moving? And we all know that Odie doesn't speak because he is the pushover for Garfield, but then every other animal speaks and we don't know what to make of it. (During the screening I attended, I heard a nearby girl ask her mom why Odie doesn't speak. "I just don't know", said the mom.)

I'm still a kid at heart and I do enjoy a kid's movie that breaks out of the norm. I DO, however, recommend the "Garfield and Friends" DVD set, which features animated episodes of the Garfield adventures. They're short, funny, to the point, and at least Garfield communicates to the viewer by mental telepathy with a wry, likable smile. To watch Bill Murray's voice through this CG monstrosity is something else.

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originally posted: 06/21/04 03:46:34
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User Comments

1/29/10 Dane Youssef Sorry, just didn't work. All wrong. Garfield wasn't made 4 live-action. This isn't Garfield 1 stars
5/17/09 Buck Terrible, I've never seen a hot vet running around in a short skirt the whole movie. 1 stars
1/06/09 the dork knight who are you kidding? watch the damn cartoon instead 1 stars
12/04/08 Shaun Wallner This movie was stupid! 1 stars
9/07/08 Blargh TERRIBLE, NOTHING LIKE THE COMIC, since when was nermal a siamese?! 1 stars
3/23/08 Carly Great, enjoyable movie. Not a fan of the cartoon but a great movie. Good animation too. 4 stars
2/18/08 Pamela White just watch the belly jiggle and you have to smile 4 stars
4/18/07 Stevo UK As if the cartoon wasnt bad enough, they had to make a feature lenghth. well, thanks a lot. 1 stars
12/22/06 David Pollastrini not horrible 3 stars
12/20/06 David Cohen Bill Murray hasn't been in a good movie since Ghostbusters, Viva Lorenzo Music! 2 stars
12/08/06 Stanley Thai A good, enjoyable film. VERY UNDERRATED! 3 stars
9/08/06 drydock54321 good conversion to live action 4 stars
6/09/06 CTT I like the comic strip, and still loathed most of this 2 stars
1/06/06 JM Synth Depends whether or not you like the comic 4 stars
10/31/05 mad mumma pretty good, as is the comic strip 3 stars
10/28/05 jess i was pretty cool u guys just wanna sound like stuck up critics 4 stars
8/19/05 ES Odie should have been animated! = dumbasses 2 stars
8/08/05 Del Not completely terrible 2 stars
7/21/05 Lydie Great film, great animation, I loved the dialogues 5 stars
6/20/05 darick Not true to the comic...predictable as plot, miscasts, inconsistent CGI, laughlessness, etc 1 stars
6/07/05 Neville Schoof Saw the preview.. that was lame enough 1 stars
4/16/05 Carol Conway Boy was this bad! 1 stars
4/03/05 Cindy As a cat lover, I loved the movie. It was very cute. 5 stars
3/31/05 hannaho What kind of debt did Murray have, that he had to make this? 1 stars
3/23/05 Suzanne Butler why does Hollywood think we need remakes of EVERYTHING?? 2 stars
3/16/05 Judith Musick OK FOR KIDS 3 stars
3/13/05 Jack Scallops Could've been better. Read the strip and watch the show instead. 2 stars
3/04/05 Chris Stephens the kids liked it 3 stars
3/02/05 David Tsung murray was in it for the money 1 stars
3/02/05 Maggie Dressler Even grownups - especially grownups - likes this one 5 stars
2/28/05 Diane Stedner not what you would expect 3 stars
2/26/05 Alice Colwell It's a kids movie 4 stars
2/26/05 Darlene Wright Good Kid Movie 4 stars
2/26/05 Joy Venters I THOUGHT IT WAS PRETTY FUNNY 3 stars
1/28/05 Jack Scallops So-so, the show is better than both this movie and the comic nowadays 3 stars
12/30/04 Doremimi It's just too bad that "1 Star - Total Crap" is the lowest rating available. 1 stars
12/25/04 Freddy SUCKED and the dog is real and nothing like cartoon Odie. Don't waste time watching this! 1 stars
11/08/04 Brody Kenny no laughs and no charms 1 stars
10/15/04 eugene biggest load of fucking crap 1 stars
9/17/04 Helen Bradley Bill Murray as always great 5 stars
9/17/04 Kyle Wellcome Its a fun movie, no intelligence needed. 3 stars
9/15/04 Naka Total ass, plain and simple. 1 stars
9/14/04 Neo Garfield rox, this movie sux 1 stars
8/18/04 qemm very boring, even for cats and garfield fans 2 stars
8/04/04 8=====D this puts the cartoon to shame...SHAME I SAY!! :( 1 stars
8/03/04 alice Oh my god !!! WHY ?? I love Garfield! WHY ???? 1 stars
7/26/04 Alex Disgusting 1 stars
7/22/04 Whitney Bullard This is one of the worst animated movies ever!! 1 stars
7/21/04 April Gupton I COUD NOT wait for this to be over 1 stars
7/17/04 legend Bad cat! Bad cat! Awful film! Awful film! 1 stars
7/15/04 mdailey The 25+ product placements say it all. This movie sucks! 1 stars
7/09/04 Nathan Fuller Possibly the worst film I've ever seen 1 stars
7/07/04 Saigo Utter trash. 1 stars
7/06/04 Spiderfan720 I hate Garfield period but this was over the top!!! 1 stars
6/28/04 Ray CRAP 1 stars
6/28/04 KENT Horrible . . . just horrible. 2 stars
6/24/04 John Okay movie. Garfields nature is done great but the origin is just a mess. 3 stars
6/24/04 Gray Harmless fun 5 stars
6/22/04 Marc Basque Stupid, unrealistic yet harmless and funny 3 stars
6/19/04 Hilarium What a waste of Bill Murray. 1 stars
6/14/04 Chris Taylor I always thought "Howard the Duck" was the worst movie ever made. Until I saw this film. 1 stars
6/12/04 Brian At least we didnt get "Family Circus - The Movie." 1 stars
6/12/04 dave not fit to print 1 stars
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  11-Jun-2004 (PG)
  DVD: 06-Jun-2006



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