Marley & Me (2008)



Critic Consensus: Pet owners should love it, but Marley and Me is only sporadically successful in wringing drama and laughs from its scenario.

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As the snow falls on their wedding night, newlyweds John and Jenny Grogan decide to leave behind the harsh winters of Michigan and head south to begin their new lives in West Palm Beach, Fla. They obtain jobs as journalists at competing local newspapers, buy their first home, and begin to make their way through the challenges of a new marriage, new careers and, possibly, the life-changing decision to start a family. Unsure of his preparedness for raising children, John confesses his fears to his friend and fellow journalist Sebastian, who comes up with the perfect solution: John should get Jenny a puppy. The Grogans adopt the cute, 12-pound yellow Labrador, who in no time at all, grows into a 100-pound steamroller of unbridled energy that turns the Grogan home into a disaster area. He flunks obedience school, chews off dry-wall, takes a bite out of the sofa, overturns garbage cans, steals a Thanksgiving turkey, consumes pillows and flowers, drinks toilet water, and chases the UPS guy. Even a newly-purchased, expensive necklace isn't safe from Marley's voracious antics. Amidst the mayhem he generates through the years, Marley sees the Grogans through the ups and downs of family life, through job and home changes, and most of all, through the myriad challenges of a growing family. As John and Jenny come to realize, Marley--"the world's worst dog"--somehow brings out the best in them.
PG (for thematic material, some suggestive content and language)
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Jennifer Aniston
as Jenny Grogan
Owen Wilson
as John Grogan
Alan Arkin
as Arnie Klein
Eric Dane
as Sebastian
Kathleen Turner
as Ms. Kornblut
Ann Dowd
as Dr. Platt
Clarke Peters
as Editor
Nathan Gamble
as Patrick
Finley Jacobsen
as Conor (Age 8)
Lucy Merriam
as Colleen (Age 5)
Bryce Robinson
as Patrick (Age 7)
Ben Hyland
as Conor (Age 5)
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Critic Reviews for Marley & Me

All Critics (137) | Top Critics (39)

Evidently contrived and something of an ungainly hybrid, the film shares its canine protagonist's facility for wearing down your resistance.

Full Review… | March 12, 2009
Time Out
Top Critic

The dog -- or the many dogs who play Marley through the years -- also delivers some of the funniest scenes.

December 29, 2008
At the Movies
Top Critic

I think this movie works because of the relationship on screen between Owen Wilson and Jennifer Aniston.

Full Review… | December 29, 2008
At the Movies
Top Critic

Not every book has a movie lurking in it.

Full Review… | December 29, 2008
Washington Post
Top Critic

Frankel turns the camera toward the canines as frequently as possible, but too often we're stuck with Wilson and Aniston's bland characters. You wonder if it might have been better to let sleeping dogs lie.

December 29, 2008
Seattle Times
Top Critic

The movie is ultimately less about the pain of loss than about the way families often take shape around a pet.

Full Review… | December 29, 2008
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Marley & Me

Comedy about a couple who get a dog that takes over their lives. I like the storyline as it is realistic and believable about how life isn't always how you planned it to be but somehow you get through the highs and lows. Good performances from Jen and Owen. The ending is very sad - be warned.

Candy Rose
Candy Rose

Super Reviewer

At first glance this is a soft fluffy rom-com that offers little more than the usual bent nose of Wilson and Aniston trying her best to ditch her 'Friends' persona. To this extend it is just that...Wilson is a poor actor and not funny whilst Aniston is another poor actress who also isn't funny and is still like Rachel from Friends haha (doing rom-coms wont help her acting career). The film is a gentle comedy with romantic issues hehe and is based around the owning of a dog and the main characters ensuing lives with the dog. Its not original but it is a swing which you don't really see coming as you assume its just another stupid 'beethoven' film. It is touching and made well but the main casting is poor and it shows, could of been quite good with a better leading duo.

Phil Hubbs
Phil Hubbs

Super Reviewer

Hands up! I admit it, I actually liked this film, like so many people told me I would. Much more of a film about family struggles, than the soppy puppy story I thought it was going to be.

Lady D'arbanville
Lady D'arbanville

Super Reviewer

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