Jim Davis' Garfield comic strip has entertained people in daily newspapers for decades. But there's a big difference between a three-panel comic strip and a full-length feature film. Critics are saying that this feline probably should have stayed on the funny pages.

Family media watchdogs agree that this lazy self-absorbed cartoon character feline and his slobbering sidekick Odie are funny enough on the big screen to be entertaining for kids and parents alike. But is there anything truly excellent and worthy of praise here? Those who give Garfield a passing grade seem merely relieved to find a movie that doesn't offend them; they don't have much to say about what it does do.

Michael Elliott (Movie Parables) says, "The trailer leaves us with the strong and unmistakable impression that the film is going to be a boring, unfaithful, and unfunny bastardization of the popular comic strip. That's exactly what we get." He says the mix of live-action and animated characters "does not work. We are never drawn into this hybrid world, and are instead reminded as to how false and forced it is."

David DiCerto (Catholic News Service) says, "Despite some funny moments … [director Peter] Hewitt coughs up a hairball." He describes the cat's antics as "staler than three-day-old Purina Cat Chow."

But Stefan Ulstein (Christianity Today Movies) says, "Parents and kids will find a lot to like in this charming film adaptation. [The movie] is not terribly sophisticated, but there is enough to keep parents from squirming in their seats with boredom. There is nothing … to cause parents to shudder."

"Garfield: The Movie isn't bad," says Adam Holz (Plugged In). "But a three-panel comic does not an 85-minute movie make. The movie does a reasonably ...

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