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A Dog's Purpose - Movie Review

Updated: Feb 18, 2021

As with all movies on this website, our goal is not to provide a complete synopsis of the film, but rather to document how the movie relates to the meaning of life. With that said, be forewarned, there are still spoilers ahead.

A Dog's Purpose was a movie that came out in 2017, directed by Lasse Hallström, based on W. Bruce Cameron's novel. The movie opens with the main character, a dog, asking What is the meaning of life? Are we here for a reason? Is there a point to any of this? This dog, who would later become known as Bailey, Ellie, Tino, and Buddy — being reincarnated four different times, and experiencing a wide range of treatment and companionship. From the street life of only fun and games, to the solemn life of a police dog, and the eventual reunification with his first "human".

Throughout Bailey's lives, he reflects on his purpose in relation to the world, and in particular, people. In the end, he concludes the following lessons learned (not verbatim):

1) Have fun

2) Find someone to save, and save them

3) Lick the ones you love

4) Don't get sad over what happened, and don't worry about the future

5) Just be here now — that's a dog's purpose

A Dog's Purpose is a pretty standard run of the mill, pop culture, meaning of life flick. Although the lessons are useful, they aren't necessarily thought-provoking, and nothing about this film left me feeling all warm and fuzzy like I thought it would. The movie was also not without controversy. Right before the movie hit theater's, a video appeared showing a dog allegedly being abused on set. However, an investigation into this indicated that this was an edited video, and no abuse had taken place.

Movie rating:

Overall - 5

Meaning of Life Relevance - 8

Uniqueness – 5

Did you see the movie? What did you think?

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