Reviews provided by RottenTomatoes
At the Movies:
I think this movie works because of the relationship on screen between Owen Wilson and Jennifer Aniston.
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.
Wall Street Journal:
The production manages, against heavy odds, to make its canine star an incorrigible bore. The problem is bad parenting.
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.
Though it requires three or four hankies to mop up the mess this sentimental tale leaves behind, the tears feel largely unearned.
The movie never captures the crucial leap that made the book a hit. It's never Marley & Us.
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.
Marley & Me turns out to be the best -- and truest -- film about humans and our animals to arrive onscreen in a dog's age.
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.
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.
The nonthreatening adorableness of Jennifer Aniston and Owen Wilson is no match for the emotional range of Marley.
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.
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.
The book has been known to make grown men weep. But seeing the movie, you can't help but feel had.
Want to see a grown man cry? Take him to Marley & Me.
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.
Watching the stars try to out-cutesy the mutt is one for the puke bucket.
The movie is ultimately less about the pain of loss than about the way families often take shape around a pet.
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.
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.
Globe and Mail:
A dog movie that isn't a dog of a movie -- what a pleasant Christmas surprise.
You should bring lots of Kleenex with you. It might just come in handy.
Evidently contrived and something of an ungainly hybrid, the film shares its canine protagonist's facility for wearing down your resistance.
Marley's misadventures play like a TV movie, never reaching the heights of such endearing canine-centered films as 2000's My Dog Skip.
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.
Marley & Me proves how lifeless Lady and the Tramp would have been if told from the p.o.v. of Jim Dear and Darling.