Garfield 2 - Review
Review by Jack Foley
DVD SPECIAL FEATURES: The Nine Lives of Garfield; Drawing with Jim Davis; Pen & Ink: Creating A Garfield Comic Strip; Exclusive Garfield comic strip; Working With Hot Dogs And Cool Kitties; On The Town With Garfield; ‘Come & Get It’ music video; Garfield Maze Game; Odie’s Photo Album Game.
THERE are times when watching Garfield 2 feels like being in purr-gatory, such is the ill-conceived nature of this sequel.
Having endeared himself to young movie fans first time around, the lasagne-loving tabby now gets a second outing that’s more kitty litter than the cat’s whiskers.
The action takes place in London, as Garfield (voiced by Bill Murray) attempts to stop his owner, Jon (Breckin Meyer), proposing to his girlfriend, Liz (Jennifer Love Hewitt).
Within hours of landing, however, Garfield is mistaken for snooty look-alike Prince (voiced by Tim Curry), an upper crust English cat who has just inherited a posh countryside estate, and pitted against the dastardly Lord Dargis (Billy Connolly) who is bidding to get rid of him.
With the reluctant help of the estate’s other farmyard animals, Garfield attempts to thwart Lord Dargis’ plans for property redevelopment so that Prince can reclaim his rightful inheritance.
From the outset, Garfield 2 struggles to command any sort of attention. Tim Hill’s movie, which was co-written by Joel Cohen and Alec Sokolow, borrows heavily from The Aristocats and Babe but ends up becoming an ugly cross-breed of both that’s neither funny nor endearing.
It’s riddled with annoying gags and shamefully reduces almost every British role to eccentric, upper-crust stereotypes, thereby wasting the talents of an extremely impressive vocal cast, including Bob Hoskins, Jane Horrocks, Rhys Ifans and Richard E Grant (not to mention Vinnie Jones).
The talking real-life animals also sit awkwardly alongside the CGI-created Garfield, while there’s no sense of logic applied to who can and can’t talk (with Garfield’s canine buddy, Odie, coming off particularly badly).
The continued presence of the smooth-talking Mr Murray also wears thin pretty quicky, especially since the actor feels like he’s delivering his lines on auto-pilot.
And Connolly’s pantomime villain is nothing short of excruciating, camping it up to hopeless effect and frequently becoming reduced to having his private parts bitten.
The whole escapade feels hopelessly juvenile from start to finish and lacks any of the sophisticated humour that made the newspaper strip so enduring.
Really young fans of the first movie may find some of the slapstick amusing but in all other respects this is, to pardon the expression, a a cat-astrophe.
Running time: 78 mins