Josh Gad, Dennis Quaid, KJ Apa, Peggy Lipton, Juliet Rylance
1 hour 40 minutes
Narrated by a dog, this is a story of a canine realising its purpose in life through the many humans he encounters in his several incarnations as a dog.
REVIEW: Bailey (Josh Gad), a Red Retriever is the protagonist who is rescued by his young owner Ethan (KJ Apa) and his mom Elizabeth (Juliet Rylance). Bailey’s earliest memories, which are intrinsically connected to smells, are all derived from Ethan. Even as a puppy, Bailey asks all the important questions; namely, ‘what is the meaning and purpose of life?’ He witnesses the key stages in his master Ethan’s ‘All-American’ life namely getting a girlfriend, winning the high school football match, getting drafted to college on an All-Star scholarship among other impactful moments.
But as life takes a turn for the worse, Bailey’s time on earth comes to an end and he dies, only to be reborn as another breed to another owner. Thus, through several incarnations, Bailey comes to discover interesting insights about humans as well as dogs.
With A Dog’s Purpose, you will have to make several concessions. It is a hopelessly cute tearjerker that is is mind-numbingly simple in the way it is crafted. And while it brazenly blackmails you emotionally at several moments in its one-hour-forty-minutes long runtime, you don’t really mind because those are the same things that work in its favour.
A tale of a reincarnating Golden Retriever, the film is based on the book by the same name. While it gets the concept of reincarnation completely wrong; that’s not where the film is aiming to go. All the makers are looking to do is to make you tear up. With aww-worthy moments galore, you don’t mind the gaps in the movie’s logic.
Besides the oversentimentality, there are some scenes in the film where it looks like the animals were pushed a bit too far, and we hope that no canines were hurt or harmed during the making of the movie.
If you’re a dog-lover, the makers will have you eating out of their hands in no time. If you’re a cat-person, there is still enough humour and heart in it to enjoy it with family.