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:: Marmaduke

Okay, the hatred going out about this film is absolutely annoying me. I never for once moment thought ‘Marmaduke’ would be a worthy Oscar winner, but after viewing the film I realised one thing… it does exactly what it sets out to do… and that is be a good family film. ‘Marmaduke’ reminds me of the films I watched as a kid, films like ‘Dusty’ and any number of any ‘Lassie’ films. It tells a family-friendly story while remaining entertaining… you can’t ask for much more than that.

Marmaduke (Owen Wilson) is an accident-prone over-sized Great Dane whose world is turned upside down when his owners, Phil (Lee Pace) and Debbie (Judy Greer) move to Los Angles. After a suggestion from Phil’s boss, Don (William H. Macy) Phil takes Marmaduke to a dog park where he quickly becomes friends with Mazie (Emma Stone), Carlos (George Lopez), Guiseppe (Christopher Mintz-Plasse) and Raisin (Steve Coogan). He also falls in love with Jezebel (Fergie) who is dating his new found enemy, Bosco (Kiefer Sutherland).

Director, Tom Dey does a wonderful job making this film work. They say not to work with children and animals, here Dey does both, and also adds some CGI into the mix as well… and it ends up working brilliantly. You can try time and time again to spot a mistake in the CGI but there simply isn’t. The dog’s mouths move in perfect time with the voices, and the interaction between animals and actors work amazingly well.

Storywise ‘Marmaduke’ works well. Yes there have been criticism about the fart jokes, but hey Marmaduke is a dog, dogs fart… and if anything the jokes show the cheeky side to his character, and if you are moving the character along then who cares how it happens. The story of ‘Marmaduke’ flows well and as an adult you will find yourself just as captivated as the kids. There may be people criticising this film, but one thing is perfectly clear… the script here is better than some of the other films I have seen this year.

‘Marmaduke’ won’t be an Oscar winner, but if you’re looking for a nice family film with a good storyline and some good morals you could do a lot worse. A good little family film that doesn’t deserve the negative press it is getting.