Overview/ Review (with Spoilers)
As someone who never had a dog, much less a pet which was invited into my home, I didn’t feel like I was missing out on much. I didn’t have this needy thing which required me to feed it, walk it, and clean it for its entire life. However, after watching A Dog’s Purpose, you may feel tempted as hell to own a pet.
Bailey/ Buddy/ Tino / Ellie Voice (Josh Gad) | Ethan (Dennis Quaid/ K.J. Apa/ Bruce Gheisar) | Carlos (John Ortiz) | Maya (Kirby Howell-Baptiste)
Characters & Storyline
Through 5 different lives, a dog named Bailey learns the meaning of life. Something which seems simple, at first, like bacon and having fun, but then it evolves as each of his owners, be it Ethan, Maya, or Carlos, he realizes they need him. That they care and love him, and it is not always the same way. However, it can be felt and smelled.
On The Fence
While All Stories Weren’t Equal, They Made You Feel Something
As seen in the trailer, Ethan is the main focus. With that, he is really the only one we get to know well since we see him go from a child to a young adult, then revisit him as an old man. Thus leaving him a fully developed character. With Carlos and Maya though, what is honed in on is loneliness and how a pet like Bailey doesn’t necessarily fill that void but eases the sorrow of lacking human companionship. Leading to the teary-eyed moments not just being when one of Bailey’s lives end but also watching these people who Bailey doesn’t always make the life better of but does remind you, and them, what it is like to feel for another being and have those feelings requited.
Overall: Mixed (Home Viewing)
As much as I loved the dog, and this made me cry as much as I expected since seeing the trailer dozens of times, I gotta admit the humans featured don’t have the best stories or acting. They are a mix between being family friendly yet Lifetime movie sappy. However, it works. In a way, I felt like how I count how many times I laugh in a movie, I should have counted how much I cried. Mind you, you won’t be sniffling and bawling your eyes out, but you will get a little Denzel in Glory tear going a few times. Showing that despite the unfortunate incident involving the German Sheppard that has become viral, you can’t replace the real thing with CGI and have the same impact.