Prayer Focus


MPAA Rating: PG for brief mild language
not reviewed
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Moviemaking Quality:

Primary Audience:
Family, Kids
Comedy, Action Adventure, Kids/Family
Year of Release:
USA Release:
Featuring: Bill Murray, Breckin Meyer, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Stephen Tobolowsky, Geoffrey Gould
Director: Peter Hewitt
Producer: John Davis
Distributor: 20th Century Fox
Copyright, 20th Century Fox
Copyright, 20th Century Fox
Copyright, 20th Century Fox
Copyright, 20th Century Fox
Copyright, 20th Century Fox
Relevant Issues
Copyright, 20th Century Fox

Live-action movie version of the comic strip character “Garfield” created, written and illustrated by Jim Davis.

Here’s what the distributor says about their film: He’s cynical, lazy and, literally, a fat cat. Now, Garfield, America’s favorite feline, is about to become a major motion picture star, in a film with broad-audience appeal. The live action / CGI picture is adapted from the syndicated cartoon strip read in 2600 newspapers by 260 million readers around the globe. In his film debut, Garfield’s owner, Jon, takes in sweet but dimwitted pooch Odie, turning Garfield’s perfect world upside down. Now, Garfield wants only one thing: Odie out of his home and life! But when the hapless pup disappears and is kidnapped by a nasty dog trainer, Garfield, maybe for the first time in his life, feels responsible. Pulling himself away from the TV, Garfield springs into action.”

Live-action cats and dogs play Garfield and Odie, supplemented by CGI animation (which may be similar to what was done in “Cats and Dogs”. Cast: Bill Murray (voice of Garfield the Cat), Breckin Meyer (Jon Arbuckle), Jennifer Love Hewitt (Dr. Liz Wilson), Nick Cannon (voice of Louis the Mouse), Alan Cumming (voice of Persnikitty the Cat), David Eigenberg (voice of Nermal the Cat), Brad Garrett (voice of Luca the Doberman Pinscher), Jimmy Kimmel (voice of the Pit Bull), Debra Messing (voice of Arlene the Cat), Mo’nique (voice of The Rat), Stephen Tobolowsky (voice of Happy)

See review page for Garfield: A Tail of Two Kitties (2006)

Viewer CommentsSend your comments
Positive—I just watched Garfield:The Movie (Wow, Creative Title) earlier today, and I found it to be enjoyable, I was always a HUGE Garfield fan, but I found some things about the Movie to be disappointing, Garfield DOES NOT TALK!!!, In the comic strip and TV shows, we just hear what he thinks, the comic strips have thought bubbles, Nermal is supposed to be a gray kitten, not an adult Siamese, and the voice of Nermal doesn’t sound like “Nermal” on episodes of Garfield and Friends, which I consider to be part of the “CANON” for Garfield fans, along with the comic strip. Arlene doesn’t even look like “Arlene” from the comic strip, Arlene is supposed to be Pink. I was hoping that Irma the Waitress from the comic strip would be in the Movie, or maybe Binky the Clown, Garfield’s Teddy Bear “Pooky” was well done, the entire story of the movie “Odie gets kidnapped, Garfield rescues him” is a lot like the first Garfield Made for TV special “Here Comes Garfield.”

In my opinion, all of the other main animals, (Odie, Nermal, Arlene) should have been done in CGI, or the whole movie should have been animated like the Saturday Morning “Garfield and Friends” which ran from 1988-1995, on TV. From a Christian point of view, their was nothing very offensive in this movie (Although the script could have been better) this is a good Family-Comedy movie, and it showed the value of Friendship, between Jon Arbuckle and Garfield, and Garfield and Odie.
My Ratings: [Better than Average/3½]
—Jack Jensen
Neutral—The film itself is squeaky clean, no sex, no cussing, and the violence is pretty much Saturday-morning cartoon fare. The story is great and being a Garfield fan, it was cool seeing my favorite comic strip on the big screen. Jennifer Love Hewitt does a great job playing Jon’s love interest, veterinarian “Dr. Liz.” Bill Murray does a good job of being Garfield’s “voice.” Not as good as the late Lorenzo Music (who provided the voice of Garfield on the “Garfield and Friends” cartoon show from the late 80’s and early 90’s), but it was good enough. The film teaches the audience about the downsides to vanity and narcissism. They also emphasize Garfield’s hatred for Mondays and his love for lasagna, which I found to be good.

However, I have a negative view of the film (but it is NOT from a moral standpoint, the film is pretty clean). The movie is about 20% true to the comic strip and the cartoon, “Garfield and Friends.” That’s my negative opinion of the film. Call me a purist if you will, but that’s how I feel. First off, Garfield is supposed to be fat, lazy, and lethargic. In the film, he’s dancing and prancing around like Fred Astaire in “Royal Wedding.”

Secondly, Nermal is seen as Garfield’s buddy, not the annoyingly cute kitty cat that Garfield tries to mail off to Abu Dhabi. Thirdly, this would’ve been a whole lot better as a cartoon movie rather than a regular film with Garfield as the only CGI-animated character. Fourth, Arlene is hardly seen in the film (ditto for Nermal). She popped up every now and then in the early years of the Garfield comic strip. Fifth, who is Luca? I never saw this dog in the comic strip before.

Sixth, the guy who plays Jon does a poor job of it. No wonder two of his TV shows didn’t make it real far.

Seven, the relationship between Liz and Jon (in the film) seems a bit unrealistic because, in the comic strip, Liz always thought Jon was too much of a dork to start a relationship with.

Eight, the film does not mention Jon’s occupation. In the comic strip, he is a single guy who works as a cartoonist, living in rural Indiana. In the film, he lives in a nice, suburban house near New York and it looks like he either runs his own home business or probably is a cartoonist.
My Ratings: [Better than Average/3]
—Shannon H., age 22
Neutral—We saw this movie as a family. Our 12 yr old daughter was bored and thought it was okay. Our 5 yr old son said it was good, not great. It was slow for a kid/family movie and although we didn’t find it offensive in nature, we didn’t like that Garfield continued to call Jon names throughout the entire movie. If kids were to mimic the cat/dog relationship with others, it would be bully style friendship. We weren’t really impressed but didn’t feel it was unChristian since there’s nothing offensive. It would make a cute rental but not big screen viewing, not worth the money.
My Ratings: [Better than Average/3]
—Paula Bahnsen, age 36
Positive—America’s fat cat hits the big screen! I’ve been a fan of the comics forever, and I went into the movie not having any expectations one way or another. But I was pleasantly surprised. Breckin Meyer is reasonably cast as hapless Jon, and Jennifer Love Hewitt lends her looks as Liz the vet. The voice of Bill Murray shines as Garfield, but he is certainly no replacement for the late Lorenzo Music. The bad? Nermal is played totally wrong, more of a ditzy feline than the world’s cutest kittycat. And I don’t recall Liz ever being all that fond of Jon. The movie could’ve used a bit of work here and there (what film doesn’t?), but it offers some good laughs along its road. “Garfield” doesn’t do the comic full justice, but all in all not bad.
My Ratings: [Better than Average/3]
—Christopher, age 21
Positive—…I think the reason kids today don’t enjoy stuff like this movie is that they would rather watch junk like sponge bob and rug rats and so many of the other junk cartoons of Nickalodean and other channels that are a disgrace to the cartoons of yesteryear the great ones that we all knew and loved. I would say this is a great movie and its worth seeing. Its just fun no harm no sex, no bad language just lots of fun and laughs. Overall, good movie
My Ratings: [Good/4]
—Jason, age 28
Negative—One of the worst movies I have seen. Don’t waste your money. Wait until it comes out on video and rent only. (If you must.)
My Ratings: [Good/1]
—Mark L. Gilliam, age 42
Positive—I just watched this movie w/my wife and daughter(age 19). We were impressed with the cleanness of it. Only 1 time Garfield went to use God’s name in vain and he didn’t really finish saying the whole word. We liked it a lot. Bill Murray has finally found the perfect roll for his type of acting! Overall a really fun movie.
My Ratings: [Good/4]
—Tom Christensen, age 42

Comments from young people
Positive—Garfield was a great movie! There was very little objectionable content, but there was some, such as one mild profanity. Revealing outfits appear on women occasionally in the film, and Garfield climbs up a woman’s dress to escape a group of dogs. On a more positive note, great messages of love and friendship are central to the movie’s plot, and the digital animation on Garfield was stunning! Overall, it is a hilarious, family-friendly movie.
My Ratings: [Better than Average/4½]
—Matt Triponey, age 12
Positive—It was better than I was expecting. I went into this movie thinking I was going to think it was the dumbest movie of the year. (but I went because I’m a fan) but really it wasn’t all that bad, they really only messed up two things from the comic strip. 1. Oddie came from Jon’s roomate lyman. and 2. Jon is supposed to like Liz, but Liz is NOT supposed to like him back. Jon should have been more of a clutz, but really the movie was fun. Bill Murray did a great job as Garfield. In all honesty there really isn’t anything “wrong” with this movie.
My Ratings: [Good/3]
—Daniel Robison, age 15
Positive—…Not a particularly funny one, but cute. Garfield does have an attitude, but Odie comes as his loyal allie. Garfield is good for the family!
My Ratings: [Better than Average/3½]
—Nicky, age 12