Friday, 24 January 2014

Marley & Me Review: A Hard Hitting Reality

Director: David Frankel
UK Release Date: 11th March 2009
Running Time: 115 minutes
Starring: Owen Wilson, Jennifer Aniston, Eric Dane

Here at M+F Reviews, considering our love for film, Marley & Me was not our particular perfect choice of film to watch. We did not go and view it at the cinema, nor did we buy it on DVD. However, once it came on to our TV screens one Christmas we sat down and watched what turned out to be a roller coaster of emotions; a really hard hitting movie that is difficult to watch without welling up (even for the most macho people). 

The film stars Owen Wilson and Jennifer Aniston, who play a real life couple called  John and Jenny Grogan. The film is a representation of John Grogan's memoir, 'Marley & Me: Life and Love with the World's Worst Dog'. The film hit UK cinemas in 2009 and turned out to be quite a success. It follows the Grogan's life as they first come into contact with the now famous dog, Marley. It is a collection of stories about Marley and the family as they go through the family building part of their lives. 

Luckily, the stories of Marley, which are intended to be funny, do not lose any of their charm or comedy value when they are adapted to the big screen. In part this has to be down to Wilson and Aniston who are a good fit for the characters they play. The film features many funny stories which was a pleasant surprise. 

Marley & Me is however not a film to be watched without a box of tissues, which was a shock. Before we watched it we had no idea as to how sad this film is. So yes, this is a warning! The film does not only show the funny parts of Marley's life but also his inevitable end. Whether it is because we feel connected to the relationship of Marley, John and Jenny or whether we can all relate to having loved something and having it taken away, Marley & Me provides the hard hitting truth; all living things eventually die. These are harsh words, but this is what happens in life and in the film. 

We were shocked to see the film with this conclusion but it was a suitable way for the film to end. The message that the film portrays is to love and be loved, like the relationship between Marley and the Gorgan's. You will finish watching this film upset and if not at least a little bit touched - in one way or another we can all relate to it and that's what films are meant to do. They provoke emotions, thoughts and produce reactions that surprise the audience. Marley & Me certainly achieved that when we watched it and we encourage you to do the same. 

M+F Rating: 7/10 

Reviewed by M+F Reviews

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