Garfield: The Movie Directed by Pete Hewitt
20th Century Fox, in release
No one can accuse Garfield: The Movie of infidelity to its source: It faithfully conveys the banality of Jim Davis's cartoon. (Though the casting of Road Trip dude Breckin Meyer as Garfield's owner, Jon Arbuckle, may muss the fur of mangier devotees.) In the tradition of such talking-animal staples as Lady and the Tramp and Babe: Pig in the City, the film sets its title character (voice of Bill Murray) loose on the metro areain this case, to rescue his canine bud, Odie, from an unscrupulous pet-show host (Stephen Tobolowsky). Like his Coffee and Cigarettes persona, Murray probably wants to keep a low profile; being forced to warble a howling Billy Joel parody (New Dog State of Mind) must add sting to the Oscar-loss wound. Still, Murray has seen worse days. His CGI alter ego is intermittently adorablealbeit not nearly as cute as his miniskirt-donning veterinarian (Jennifer Love Hewitt). Meeeow.