Marley & Me 2008

Critics score:
63 / 100

Reviews provided by RottenTomatoes

Ben Lyons, At the Movies: I think this movie works because of the relationship on screen between Owen Wilson and Jennifer Aniston. Read more

Jessica Reaves, Chicago Tribune: The book, like the movie it inspired, is a sweet, surprisingly moving chronicle of a young couple's struggle to simultaneously build a family, advance their careers and maintain their sanity. Read more

Andrea Gronvall, Chicago Reader: Doesn't consistently capture the book's personable tone. Read more

Joe Morgenstern, Wall Street Journal: The production manages, against heavy odds, to make its canine star an incorrigible bore. The problem is bad parenting. Read more

Moira MacDonald, Seattle Times: 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. Read more

Scott Tobias, AV Club: Though it requires three or four hankies to mop up the mess this sentimental tale leaves behind, the tears feel largely unearned. Read more

Bill Goodykoontz, Arizona Republic: Need a shortcut to manipulate an audience's emotions? Always go with the dog. Read more

Wesley Morris, Boston Globe: The movie never captures the crucial leap that made the book a hit. It's never Marley & Us. Read more

Betsy Sharkey, Los Angeles Times: When the story lags -- and it does more than a few times -- there is Alan Arkin as Grogan's crusty editor Arnie Klein to help things along. Read more

Lisa Kennedy, Denver Post: Marley & Me turns out to be the best -- and truest -- film about humans and our animals to arrive onscreen in a dog's age. Read more

Tom Long, Detroit News: Marley & Me is everything you could want in a holiday movie -- family friendly, touching, funny. Plus, it's surprisingly intelligent and real. It may be the best family film of the year. Read more

Owen Gleiberman, Entertainment Weekly: A disarmingly enjoyable, wholehearted comic vision of the happy messiness of family life. Read more

Joy Tipping, Dallas Morning News: Marley, of course, steals every scene he's in, which is most of them. Read more

Connie Ogle, Miami Herald: It's a film guaranteed to appeal to tender-hearted pet lovers. But the movie, which was largely filmed in Miami and Fort Lauderdale, turns out to be less about dogs than it is about one man's trajectory through adulthood. Read more

Linda Winer, Newsday: The nonthreatening adorableness of Jennifer Aniston and Owen Wilson is no match for the emotional range of Marley. Read more

Stephen Whitty, Newark Star-Ledger: I thought the first three-quarters of it about as engrossing as a Puppy Chow commercial, and the last quarter pretty depressing. But that's chiefly because it only made me think of my own dogs. Read more

Joe Neumaier, New York Daily News: If characters talking to dogs and dog reaction shots are some of your favorite things, add some stars to this review. Read more

Kyle Smith, New York Post: I said to Lady, "It's a labra-bore"/She said, "Scout, you overpraise." Read more

Roger Moore, Orlando Sentinel: The book has been known to make grown men weep. But seeing the movie, you can't help but feel had. Read more

Carrie Rickey, Philadelphia Inquirer: Marley boasts animal magnetism. Read more

James Berardinelli, ReelViews: Want to see a grown man cry? Take him to Marley & Me. Read more

Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times: When Marley is not on the screen, Wilson and Aniston demonstrate why they are gifted comic actors. They have a relationship that's not too sitcomish, not too sentimental, mostly smart and realistic. Read more

Peter Travers, Rolling Stone: Watching the stars try to out-cutesy the mutt is one for the puke bucket. Read more

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

Walter V. Addiego, San Francisco Chronicle: Director David Frankel gives the movie the aw-shucks feeling of a sitcom with a large sentimental streak. Read more

Colin Covert, Minneapolis Star Tribune: David Frankel adapts John Grogan's sentimental bestseller with no artistic pretensions beyond alternately making you feel like your heart is caving in, then injecting you with a gigantic syringe of good cheer. Read more

Joe Williams, St. Louis Post-Dispatch: It should come as no surprise that when you team Owen Wilson and Jennifer Aniston with a Labrador retriever, you get a bundle of blond fluff. Read more

Rick Groen, Globe and Mail: A dog movie that isn't a dog of a movie -- what a pleasant Christmas surprise. Read more

Peter Howell, Toronto Star: You should bring lots of Kleenex with you. It might just come in handy. Read more

Hank Sartin, Time Out: Read more

Trevor Johnston, Time Out: Evidently contrived and something of an ungainly hybrid, the film shares its canine protagonist's facility for wearing down your resistance. Read more

Claudia Puig, USA Today: Marley's misadventures play like a TV movie, never reaching the heights of such endearing canine-centered films as 2000's My Dog Skip. Read more

Todd McCarthy, Variety: This perky, episodic film is as broad and obvious as it could be, but delivers on its own terms thanks to sparky chemistry between its sunny blond stars, Owen Wilson and Jennifer Aniston, and the unabashed emotion-milking of the final reel. Read more

Jim Ridley, Village Voice: Marley & Me proves how lifeless Lady and the Tramp would have been if told from the p.o.v. of Jim Dear and Darling. Read more

Philip Kennicott, Washington Post: Not every book has a movie lurking in it. Read more

Christy Lemire, Associated Press: Here, there's no great momentum, just a long, flat arc toward the inevitable. Read more