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Marmaduke review: Pete Davidson’s movie is a modern version of a medieval torture concoction to sit through

From the animation to its jokes, Marmaduke gets everything wrong. The movie is a trainwreck, but whatever its equivalent to a Great Dane is. There is nothing to laugh about or even keep you entertained. If you have not seen it yet, just consider yourselves lucky.

  • Akshay Krishna

Last Updated: 09.11 AM, May 08, 2022

Marmaduke review: Pete Davidson’s movie is a modern version of a medieval torture concoction to sit through

Story: Marmaduke is a Great Dana who is calamitous and chaotic. He teams up with an elite dog trainer to prove the world wrong, and enters the Westminster Champion Contest, a big time dog contest. 

Review: Let me make this clear and to the point. RUN. I would describe Marmaduke in the movie as a calamitous canine, but the real calamity here is the animated feature in itself. I mean, how have we gone from movies with speaking dogs such as Toy Story and Bolt, to this? I understand Great Danes would be a trickier breed to get the lip movements right, but there is no denying that it could have been better than this. But this little detail sums up the entire movie. 

To start off, Marmaduke, who is based on long-running comic strip, "Marmaduke", is a chaotic family dog who often runs into troubles. He soon teams up with a tech-savvy, elite dog trainer to compete in the Westminster Champion Contest, a prestigious dog show. Marmaduke goes from fun furry chaos to, well, just chaos. 

To start off, this movie feels like it was made in the nineties, with its animation style and humour. Just for instance, there is a scene where the Mexican team enters a chihuahua for the competition. The dog’s obedience is tested by offering him a taco. This is the quality of the movie’s humour, which much like its ancient animation techniques, are 30 years behind and so don't find an issue in being racist. 

Let me put this out there. I like animations and love a good movie featuring a canine, I even enjoyed Sausage Party. But there are too many things wrong with Marmaduke. The movie is torture to sit through and it boggles the mind. While one would expect the dog contest to go alright, it doesn’t. Marmaduke even lets out a deadly fart, which actually kills people in the audience. Was it funny? No. Was anything about this movie fun? No. Would I spend my quality time watching Marmaduke? No. 

What still lurks around my mind is how Netflix got this movie made. For all its filmmaking avant-grand, Marmaduke seems like something that was made years before Hollywood perfected animation. And if you have ever in your life read the Marmaduke comics and enjoyed it, please stay away from this. Its over 100 minutes of torture that you would not mind turning your back on. Pete Davidson as the Great Dane, J. K. Simmons as his arch enemy, and David Koechner as Phil Winslow all look good on paper, but even they cannot paper over the sinkhole size cracks in the movie’s writing and making. 

Verdict: There isn’t much to say about Marmaduke. It's a poorly made movie written with a bad taste for humour. It’s a torture to sit through and if you love Marmaduke comic strip, Great Dane or even dogs in general, stay as far away as possible from this Netflix animated feature.