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The Garfield Movie Review - Chris Pratt and Samuel L Jackson meet outside MCU in a fun film that understands its target audience

The Garfield Movie takes no effort to be a top-notch technical marvel. It is simple and that's what helps it bloom well. 

3.5/5rating
The Garfield Movie Review - Chris Pratt and Samuel L Jackson meet outside MCU in a fun film that understands its target audience
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Last Updated: 12.02 PM, May 17, 2024

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Garfield (Chris Pratt) is now busy having a good time with his new pet human, whom he claims he adopted, Jon (Nicholas Hoult), and their pet dog, Odie (Harvey Guillén). One day some stray cats kidnap both Garfield and Odie, only to be rescued by the former estranged father Vic (Samuel L. Jackson), who, according to Garfield, abandoned him one night when he was a kitten. 

Now Jinx (Hannah Waddingham), a rogue cat, is haunting them as she seeks revenge from Vic for not standing by her in the tough days when she was caught and imprisoned. How the father and son rekindle and save themselves is the focus of the film.

The Garfield Movie Review

The best part about the Garfield comics and movies is that they show you the talking cats, dogs, and bulls and make you suspend your disbelief while also reminding you that this is just a fragment of someone’s imagination. You ask how? Every time any animal is talking to the human around them, the human hears their animal language and never English. This instantly reminds you of the dynamic this movie is sharing between the two and never once does it let that take away the magic from the entire product. The Garfield Movie (2024), which now brings in a star as big as Chris Pratt to voice the leading cat, is aware of its audience and that becomes its superpower in more ways than one. Let's decide and understand how.

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Directed by Mark Dindal, the man behind The Emperor's New Groove, and written by Paul A. Kaplan, Mark Torgove, and David Reynolds, based on the characters created by Jim Davis, The Garfield Movie is a very aware piece of content in recent times. To make it simpler to understand, here is a movie that is simplistic but also entertaining and understands its audience pretty well. Garfield has always been a niche hero and with the latest film, the attempt to bring in new people is not by changing anything about the IP but by sticking to the core material and making it effective to attract more people. There is a certain cute yet ignorant, evil yet adorable element to the franchise which is a thin line to walk in but works very well here.

Garfield has to be one of the most delusional cartoon characters written because he is a cat that delves into the greys. He is neither the cute victim nor the lethal danger; he is a lazy cat who feels he knows everything this world has to offer. He is overly smart, arrogant, and ignorant of his shortcomings. His inability to jump (which is one of the superpowers cats possess naturally) is a result of his being a high-society cat (if that's a thing in the cat universe). He is the elite among the strays and doesn't want to deal with the comfort of enslaving a human for anything. So he is not just any comical cat but a cat who is more human than human.

What also adds more to the cat is the writing, which has so much satire added to it and is blended so organically with everything that is Garfield. A major part of the credit for the organic blending also goes to Chris Pratt, who does a phenomenal job with the dubbing of the leading part. He meets the incredible Samuel L. Jackson outside the MCU, where they play Star Lord and Nick Fury, respectively. Their chemistry is felt even with the voices and magic is created. The cutest is a bull coming to see the love of his life, a cow, for six seconds every day because she is captive inside a zoo-like place.

It is not like The Garfield Movie is path-breaking or doing some crazy things with the animation medium. But what it does right is not become too complex in a story that was mostly written for children. It sticks to a simple narrative with simplistic on-screen translation while entertaining vibrant and pretty cool Easter eggs and additions. The movie lands pretty well with its messaging and is also pretty real when it comes to shaping characters. It comes from a team that has Finding Nemo and The Emperor's New Groove on their resume and you can see how content and sure they are about every single thing they place in their film.

The movie, though, could give a better build-up for the future because it has an ending note and not a cliffhanger of sorts. The franchise is moving in the right direction.

The Garfield Movie Review: Final Verdict

Some top-class minds come together to make a movie that shows how sure they are about their craft. There's a Chris Pratt in the centre of this all and he knows what magic his voice can do.

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