KSL MOVIE SHOW

KSL Movie Show Review: Nothing can save ‘The Garfield Movie’

May 24, 2024, 12:00 PM

For what’s supposed to be one of the laziest comic strip cats on Earth, this particular Garfield ...

For what’s supposed to be one of the laziest comic strip cats on Earth, this particular Garfield is off the couch and on the go. In other words, he's nothing like the Garfield created by Jim Davis.

Editor’s note: This is an editorial piece. An editorial, like a news article, is based on fact but also shares opinions. The opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and are not associated with our newsroom.

SALT LAKE CITY — For what’s supposed to be one of the laziest comic strip cats on Earth, this particular Garfield is off the couch and on the streets breaking into milk farms, scowling at his long-lost father, and flying around on delivery drones like a trapeze artist.

All of this begs the question – who is this feline? Because he certainly doesn’t resemble the Garfield created by Jim Davis.

Sure, he still hates Mondays (who doesn’t). He still has a strong affection for pizza and lasagna and “cheese” is his love language, but that’s where the similarities end.

This Garfield’s origin story

This Garfield has an origin story, that has kitten Garfield being left in a rain-soaked alley by his father (Samuel L. Jackson) who says, “Stay here, I’ll be right back.”

But he isn’t right back.

The frightened little guy sees an Italian restaurant across the way and spots Jon Arbuckle (Nicholas Hoult) sitting at a window seat all alone.

The kitten presses his furry face against the glass and they make a connection.

All is well until …

Years go by, they buy a house, get a dog Odie (Harvey Guillén), and all is paradise.  Until dog dad re-appears, only to drag Garfield and Odie into a revenge scenario set up by one of dad’s former crime colleagues, Jinx (Hannah Waddingham).

Jinx insists they steal a truckload of milk from Lactose Farms. Huh?

The story is further complicated by an out-to-pasture bull Otto (Ving Rhames) who is pining away for his cow girlfriend Ethel (Alicia Grace Turrell). Ethel is being held captive at the farm.

So now, they have to come up with this intricate plan to not only steal a milk truck but rescue Ethel from these heartless corporate jerks.

When will this be over?

This movie gets so convoluted that even the grownups forced to sit through it are scratching their heads. In the meantime, kids are asking – when will this be over, and who the heck is Garfield?

Yeah, so therein lies some of the problems with this movie. Most young kids (uh, target audience) have never heard of Garfield, much less read the comic strips.

They have no baseline from where to begin. And even if they were aware, this Garfield, as we’ve mentioned, is only a faint imitation of the witty, sarcastic and lethargic cat.

So while most of the animation is easy on the eyes, the over-indulgent storyline is too much to take in. This is supposed to be a cute, silly, lazy cat movie, not Captain Cat Fantastic solves the DaVinci Code.

I don’t want to have to work that hard – and I’m pretty sure the traditional Garfield doesn’t want to either.

THE GARFIELD MOVIE (C+) Rated PG for action/peril and mild thematic elements. Starring the voices of Chris Pratt, Samuel L. Jackson, Hannah Waddingham, Ving Rhames, Nicholas Hoult and Cecily Strong. Directed by Mark Dindal (“Chicken Little” “The Emperor’s New Groove”) – animated by DNEG Animation and Wayfarer Studios. Running time: 101 minutes.

The KSL Movie Show with Andy Farnsworth and Steve Salles airs Fridays on KSL NewsRadio from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Follow the show on Facebook, and join The KSL Movie Show Club for exclusive perks by texting MOVIE to 57500.

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KSL Movie Show Review: Nothing can save ‘The Garfield Movie’