Copyright, Columbia Pictures, a division of Sony Pictures

The Garfield Movie

also known as “Garfield,” “Garfield - Fora de Casa,” “Garfield : Héros malgré lui,” “Garfield : Le film,” See more »
MPA Rating: PG-Rating for action/peril and mild thematic elements.

Reviewed by: Alexander Malsan

Moral Rating: Average
Moviemaking Quality:
Primary Audience: Family
Genre: Animation Adventure Comedy
Length: 1 hr. 41 min.
Year of Release: 2024
USA Release: May 24, 2024 (wide release)
Copyright, Columbia Pictures, a division of Sony Picturesclick photos to ENLARGE Copyright, Columbia Pictures, a division of Sony Pictures Copyright, Columbia Pictures, a division of Sony Pictures Copyright, Columbia Pictures, a division of Sony Pictures Copyright, Columbia Pictures, a division of Sony Pictures Copyright, Columbia Pictures, a division of Sony Pictures
Relevant Issues
Copyright, Columbia Pictures, a division of Sony Pictures

Film based on comic strip characters

Lazy, overeating tabby cat

Copyright, Columbia Pictures, a division of Sony Pictures

Father cat who is a thief with a heist crew and apparently abandoned his kitten in an alley

What does Scripture say about Stealing? and theft?

Corporation that ran a farm owner out of business and took over the farm

Copyright, Columbia Pictures, a division of Sony Pictures

A cat with a grudge and strong desire for REVENGE

Importance of forgiving others and the good that comes from this — followers of Christ have a responsibility to be humble, forgiving, loving

Kid Explorers
Adventures in our rainforest — Learn about the Creator of the universe by exploring His marvelous creation in Christian Answers’ site for kids—activities, stories, answers to children’s questions, coloring pages, and more
Featuring Chris PrattGarfield (voice)
Samuel L. JacksonVic (voice)
Hannah WaddinghamJinx (voice)
Ving RhamesOtto (voice)
Nicholas HoultJon (voice)
Cecily StrongMarge Malone (voice)
Harvey Guillén (Harvey Guillen) … Odie (voice)
Bowen YangNolan (voice)
Snoop DoggMaurice (voice)
Jeff FoxworthyZapped Bird (voice)
Brett Goldstein … Roland (voice)
Janelle James … Olivia (voice)
Angus Cloud … Snickers (voice)
See all »
Director Mark Dindal
Producer Columbia Pictures
Alcon Entertainment
See all »
Distributor: Columbia Pictures. Trademark logo.
Columbia Pictures
, a division of Sony Pictures

Garfield is more than just your average house cat. On the outside, life for Garfield has always seemed pretty easy: he wakes up his owner John every morning, sits on the recliner and watches TV, and gets to eat anything he wants (and I do mean EVERYTHING) with his pal Odie.

On the inside though, Garfield has had his share of pain. When he was just a little kitten, his father, Vic (Samuel L. Jackson), abandoned him in a cardboard box on the street. Luckily Garfield was able to find John at a restaurant.

It’s been years since Vic abandoned Garfield (Chris Pratt), and Garfield has tried his best to leave the past in the past and forget all about his father, until one day everything changes. Garfield and Odie are kidnapped by two dogs who work for an eccentric feline named Jinx (Hannah Waddingham) to draw Vic out of hiding. Sure enough it works, and Vic comes to the rescue… well, sort of.

Jinx tells Vic and Garfield that Vic has to repay Jinx for abandoning her all those years ago (apparently Vic and Jinx were part of a street gang) and allowing Jinx to be put in the pound. She tells Vic she will require one quart of milk for every day she was abandoned. She doesn’t just want any milk though: the milk has to come from Lakeshore Farms, which is tighter to break into than Fort Knox.

Join Garfield, Vic, Odie and even a bull, Otto (Ving Rhames), on this fun adventure in discovering that family truly is very important.

When I was a boy, I fondly remember getting the morning Sunday paper with my father. He, of course, would read the news, while I would go straight to the Funnies section. I looked forward to reading my favorites: “Hagar the Horrible,” “Blondie” and of course “Garfield.”

Garfield’s dry sense of humor, his no-nonsense attitude and his love of lasagna (and any Italian food in general) definitely made me laugh. Sometimes the Garfield comic strip would consist of Garfield picking on Odie, sometimes it was a situation with Jon, and sometimes it would just joke about whatever was going on in the real world. I never found myself bored or tired of the strip.

And then came the film adaptations. “Garfield Gets Real,” “Garfield: A Tail of Two Kitties,” “Garfield: The Movie,” “Garfield’s Fun Fest,” “Garfield’s Pet Force” and now “The Garfield Movie.” To a certain extent, many of these films have drawn some of the magic of the classic comic strip and some have come up short.

In some respects, elements of the original comic strip shine throughout this newest film, such as Garfield’s comedic love of food, his wit, and even his comedic chemistry with his sidekick Odie. However, there were also some moments where I found failed attempts to reinvent Garfield for a more “modern day” audience.

Case in point, there are moments where, shall I say, more progressive-like thinking unsurprisingly made its way into the film (such as moments where petting zoos are made to look like cruel and inhumane places for animals), and in those moments I couldn’t help but let out a big loud “uggggggg.” I know progressive messaging has become a staple in children’s films (Disney, anyone?), but I do miss the days when a children’s film was JUST a children’s film. Nothing more, nothing less.

To the film’s credit, the performances by Chris Pratt (who plays Garfield) and Samuel L. Jackson (who plays Vic) are top notch. Sure, Chris and Samuel are no stranger to providing comedic relief to a film that, at times, takes itself a little too seriously, but they both provide subtle, nuanced performances, providing moments for the audience to realize the bond that needs to be reforged by both Garfield and Vic.

Additionally, the animation is top notch. You can see every detail in the characters, from the fur on the cats to the blades of grass on the hilltops. Sony Animation dares to challenge even some of the most seasoned animation companies (Disney, Pixar, Dreamworks, etc.).

Content of Concern

VIOLENCE: Most of the violence is comedic and slapstick in nature, but here are some moments to be aware of for youngsters. A character is punched and then kidnapped by two dogs. This same character is later threatened with a “play date” with two vicious dogs (these are seen ripping a mannequin to shreds to prove their point). A live bird is eaten alive by a cat. A character is tossed back and forth by tree limbs and then lands in manure inside a moving train car. A character is kicked off a moving train.

Someone mentions wanting to find an area where there will be a big splat when they plan to throw a character off a bridge. We witness a bird being electrocuted (the bird is okay though). A character is seen beating their head on a tree in frustration. When devising a battle plan, a character that is part of the plan is represented on a map with a dead, run over possum (we learn the possum was actually playing dead). A couple characters are hit with sticks then run over by a boulder (again, everyone is okay).

Characters are seen being hit with objects, falling over, and in one extended sequence a character is seen dodging blades and other devices inside a cheese factory. A character has the tip of their tail cut off (just some of the fur, not the actual tail). We view drawings made by Jinx of her plan to throw characters off a moving train (trains seem to be a go to in this movie). A character jumps off a bridge and trampolines back up onto the bridge.

LANGUAGE: “Holy Jimmy Davis!” (1), “Son of a Cud” (1), “Bloody” (1). A character talks of unimaginable pain and misery. Someone mentions to a character that they should notify their next of kin. Someone exclaims to another character, “Here comes the pain!”

Slang definition: Bloody


SEX: Jinx mentions to a character that they should use dating apps (they mention some rather adult apps, like Tinder). A couple are seen kissing on TV. A bull named Otto talks about how much he is in love with a cow named Belle. Later on Otto and Belle are seen being romantic in two different instances (one of those sequences is just really weird, with some sensual music playing in the background).

ALCOHOL: Milk is served to characters in martini glasses.

OTHER: There is some product placement throughout the film (Roombas, Olive Garden, etc.). We see a kitten being abandoned by their parent in a few instances. A kitten is seen dodging cars. We witness Garfield’s excessive eating habits on screen. Someone mentions they are ready to “go to the all you can eat buffet in the sky.” A place called Al Cat Traz (yes, it’s spelled just like that) is seen as smelly and serving wicked bad food (the food is green and slimy). A character is seen pulling burs off of themselves. Later on, this same character is seen with spiders crawling over them. We see Otto and Belle being pulled apart from each other and separated.

WOKEISM: Petting zoos are shown in a very negative light, a very one-sided view, depicting them as places where all animals are treated with cruelty.


The most prominent message in “Garfield: The Movie” is the message of abandonment. In the film, yes we witness as Garfield is abandoned as a kitten, but we also witness his struggle with being abandoned now that he is a full-grown cat.

As I watch Garfield struggle with this, I am reminded that when we accept Jesus into our hearts and lives, he promises to NEVER leave or abandon us, no matter what may come our way. Scripture is very clear.

“For He has said, ‘I will never leave you nor forsake you.” —Hebrews 13:5

“The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” —Deuteronomy 31:8

“His massive arms are wrapped around you, protecting you. You can run under his covering of majesty and hide.” —Psalm 91:4

In Isaiah 43:2, God promised the Israelites,

“When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you.”

This applies not just to the Israelites, but to all those who truly trust in God and believe in His Son Jesus and trust in Him.

Closing Thoughts

“Garfield…,” for its faults, is a somewhat light and fun take on the classic Garfield stories and comics we all grew up with. I have no qualms and actually commend the filmmakers attempts to reintroduce Garfield to newer, younger audiences. What can become problematic though is all the extra stuff that, truthfully, isn’t necessary and just drags the film down (the violence—though most of it cartoonish in nature, sexual innuendo, the language, and the progressive messaging).

I’d hesitantly recommend “The Garfield Movie” to older children and Christian families. Parents are encouraged to do a little research beforehand before letting the little ones attend. Ultimately the choice is yours as to whether you and your family wish to “indulge” in what “The Garfield Movie” has to offer.

  • Violence: Heavy
  • Wokeism: Moderate
  • Profane language: Mild
  • Sex: Mild
  • Drugs/Alcohol: Mild
  • Vulgar/Crude language: Minor —mostly name-calling and insults
  • Nudity: None
  • Occult: None

See list of Relevant Issues—questions-and-answers.

Viewer CommentsSend your comments
Positive—As a lifelong avid Garfield fan, and the literal creator of the “Garfield Fans International” Public Group on Facebook, I was really looking forward to this new Garfield CGI film since it was announced in May 2016. While “The Garfield Movie” had Superb CGI and is visually superior to the other Garfield TV series “Garfield Originals” and “The Garfield Show” on Cartoon Network and baby Garfield as a kitten melts your heart with the cuteness overload, all in all.

“The Garfield Movie” was pretty good. Granted, not as good as I had hoped for, but still a really good family-friendly movie for people of all ages, far superior to the two previous Garfield live action films released in 2004 and 2006. Good moral values are shown in this movie; Vic deeply cares for his son Garfield and vice versa. Friendship between Garfield and his canine companion Odie is shown, Jon Arbuckle shows deep concern and love for his pets when they go missing.

Garfield breaking The Fourth Wall in this film was cleverly done, as well as his use of modern technology such as the smartphone. The plot of the film was a bit corny and somewhat similar to the 1983 animated Garfield TV special “Garfield on the Town.” The meta Garfield references in the film were well placed and hilarious.

A major complaint I have with “The Garfield Movie” is that many characters from the Garfield comic strip were not included, not even Garfield’s loyal girlfriend Arlene.

Two good Christian articles online that remind me of “The Garfield Movie” are, from “When your Guardian angel is Garfield the cat” by Robert Moss and also an article is headlined “Words of Wisdom from Garfield the cat” …the words of wisdom in this article are from the Garfield comic strip of Sunday March 18, 1979.

This Garfield film is truly ‘100% Pure Garfield’ like the slogan used on various Garfield merchandise over the years, and makes me feel that because this film is pretty good , and also because of the 1987 animated TV special “Garfield Goes Hollywood” that Garfield the cat truly deserves a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, just like numerous other fictional characters have stars on the Walk of Fame as listed on Wikipedia entry “List of fictional characters with stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.”

I highly recommend “The Garfield Movie” for all animal lovers. Lots of Garfieldy fun that makes us look forward to even more Garfield movies and the upcoming Garfield TV series planned for Nickelodeon, once again “The Garfield Movie” is proof positive that Garfield is indeed the “Greatest. Cat. Ever” as stated in a May 2024 special publication of the same name from the editors of Life Magazine!
My Ratings: Moral rating: Better than Average / Moviemaking quality: 4½
Jeff Andrew Winters, age 44 (USA)

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