Genres: Comedy, Drama, Adaptation and Biopic
Running Time: 2 hr. 3 min.
Release Date: December 25th, 2008 (wide)
MPAA Rating: PG for thematic material, some suggestive content and language.
Distributors: 20th Century Fox Distribution
Directed by: David Frankel
JJ Rating: B+
John (Owen Wilson) and Jenny Grogan (Jennifer Aniston) get married, have careers as newspaper writers and move to Florida. To stave off his wife’s want of a family so soon John decides to surprise her with a puppy. Little did he know that the joke was not only on her but on him for Marley turns out to be more than just a regular dog. Marley and Me.
(sidenote - uhm...annoying. It won't let me use the symbol for and. )
I get this material feeling from Jennifer Aniston from her acting in this film. She does a great job but it just feels like she wants to actually have children. It beams off the screen. Her and Wilson have a sweet chemistry that just makes the entire believability of the marriage between them, via their characters, easy. Their chemistry with the dog was perfect as it could have been.
Marley and Me is one of those films that just snagged me by surprise. I thought it was not going to be anything special. But as I was viewing it I was flipped because it was way different than I had thought. It’s one of those few times I was wrong about a movie before seeing it. Ha. Also after seeing it I thought it would snag the number one spot on the Box Office for the weekend. I also got number four right by stating it was going to be Valkyrie, but got Benjamin Button and Bedtime Stories switched up.
It’s a good story that has a dog that isn’t necessarily good. They don’t get rid of the dog, they keep him no matter how much trouble he causes with his chewing things, pissing in places, ruining moments and such. They even start a family and have children with the dog around that also love Marley. The story goes through years with them. Just like in a real family life there is stress because the wife has so much to do and she doesn’t feel appreciated as she would have liked and the husband has to deal with the job as well as life at home and it’s a bit much. Then there’s great times as well as funny moments and oh no moments. It’s also epic tale like Benjamin Button except this epic centers around the family and they don’t go anywhere but within their frame of family. It’s a epic family tale.
I have a chow. Ever since she was little all she did was lie around and look like a pillow. We, my brothers and I, did place our head on her and pretend she was a pillow. She is very comfortable. She never chased after anything or played much. She was not a big player like most dogs are with catch as well as she was not into getting wet. So when I took her to the dog park she avoided the entire water area. So most of the film was something I could not relate to. But then towards then when Owen Wilson lies next to Marley I could relate.
Marley and Me’s problem was pacing. If it had better pacing it would have gotten a better grade. I think David Frankel did a good job otherwise. There was a good balance of humor and drama and the drama had the heart. It was the kind of heart that most dog lovers will get and understand and cry because of it.
If you are a dog lover then this is the film for you. It will reach into your heart and touch it. It’ll bring out the pains you’ve had in the past with dogs as well as the fear for the dog you have now. You may think that I’m telling something I shouldn’t, but the fact is that even if I am the whole movie will strike you in a way that no other film can. And that would be because this film is about a dog and how dogs add so much to our lives. It even has the great potential of softening the heart of the hardhearted Randy from "Survivor" whose only friend for a long while was a doggy.
Marley and Me was a surprise that I’m glad I got to see. It is a film that I could see again and most likely have the same reaction I had this go around. People yell and get frustrated with their animals but when they sit down and that animal comes on over for a good pet session it’s realized how much you actually love them. Marley and Me will make you laugh, laugh, laugh and then cry and then make you want to go home and give your dog a big hug.