Tuesday, 13 August 2013

Book to Film Review: Marley and Me

About the film
Marley and Me is a comedy/ drama film that was released in 2008. It has a run time of 121 minutes and is rated PG. The film is also based on the book of the same name by John Grogan.

After getting married, John and Jennifer Grogan decide to move to Florida. With the couple’s jobs as newspaper writers not being as good as they could be, Jennifer decides that she wants a baby. Instead of giving Jennifer what she wants, husband John gets her a puppy instead. Marley, a cute and cuddly golden Labrador seems to be a great addition to the family until he grows into a 100 pound, fully grown dog. Marley’s antics provide great writing for John’s column but when he and Jennifer finally do have a family on their own, they realise an un-trainable dog might not be the best thing for them.

Owen Wilson as Johnny "John" Grogan
Jennifer Aniston as Jennifer "Jenny" "Jen" Grogan
Eric Dane as Sebastian Tunney
Alan Arkin as Arnie Klein
Haley Hudson as Debbie
Haley Bennett as Lisa
Kathleen Turner as Ms. Kornblut

What I thought
For so long I have been putting off watching this film because I already knew how it ended. A few weeks ago though it was on TV and there wasn’t really anything else to watch.

Playing the lead roles of John and Jennifer are Owen Wilson and Jennifer Aniston. At the beginning of the film we get to know them as a couple and also what each of them wants separately. John wants to be taken seriously as a journalist at some point while Jennifer is getting broody soon after the wedding and wants to start a family. Wilson and Aniston are really great together on screen and make a fun and cute couple. I wouldn’t say there is an awful lot of chemistry between them in the romance department though but this is a family film so it doesn’t matter too much. They do make good best friends though and it is clear how much they rely on each other.

Out of the two main leads, it would be hard to say which one was better. While Owen shows a love and friendship with Marley, Aniston has some quite big issues to deal with throughout the film. Both actors do much better than I thought they would in regards to really emotional scenes or topics which is why I can’t decide who I liked the most in this film. Also, over the course of their relationship, both characters change a lot so we get to see a lot of growth and development in the characters which both actors portrayed really well.

Marley and Me doesn’t have the most exciting plot but instead, it tells the story of a young couple and their family. John has a wonderful relationship with Marley from the moment he buys the dog for Jennifer. It isn’t long after the couple get Marley that they realise he is going to be a handful. He’s impossible to train, doesn’t listen and pretty much does whatever he wants and eats whatever he wants. As a columnist, John uses all of the bad and funny things Marley does in his writing - which proves to be very popular with his readers. While Jennifer wants Marley to be a more well behaved dog, John accepts that Marley will always be a bit unruly. I really loved watching the relationships between John/ Jennifer and Marley. It was also really interesting to see how feelings changed after the couple started a family and how having children as well as a crazy dog affected the couple’s relationship.

Marley and Me is a great family film which is fun for everyone but it also has more serious aspects to it for the adults watching. There is plenty of comedy moments throughout this film due to the way in which Marley acts and the things he gets up to. Marley and Me was extremely heart-warming and I loved (nearly) every minute of it.

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