Garfield Movie, The

image for Garfield Movie, The

Short takes

Not suitable under 4; parental guidance to 6 (violence, language, themes, scary scenes)

classification logo

This topic contains:

  • overall comments and recommendations
  • details of classification and consumer advice lines for Garfield Movie, The
  • a review of Garfield Movie, The completed by the Australian Council on Children and the Media (ACCM) on 28 May 2024.

Overall comments and recommendations

Children under 4 Not suitable due to violence, language, themes and scary scenes.
Children aged 4–6 Parental guidance recommended due to violence, language, themes and scary scenes.
Children aged 7 and over Ok for this age group.

About the movie

This section contains details about the movie, including its classification by the Australian Government Classification Board and the associated consumer advice lines. Other classification advice (OC) is provided where the Australian film classification is not available.

Name of movie: Garfield Movie, The
Classification: G
Consumer advice lines: Very mild themes, slapstick violence and infrequent coarse language
Length: 101 minutes

ACCM review

This review of the movie contains the following information:

A synopsis of the story

Just a kitten and believing himself to be abandoned by his father – a tough outdoor cat called Vic (voice of Samuel L. Jackson) – Garfield (voice of Chris Pratt) sets out to find himself food and quickly encounters so much more. Adopted by Jon (voice of Nicholas Hoult) and later joined by Odie (voice of Harvey Guillen), Garfield is living the high life: all the food he could ever imagine, luxurious recliner chairs, Odie anticipating his every need and Jon inadvertently supplying them. Life is good and Vic is nothing but a bitter memory. But all that changes when Garfield and Odie are abducted one night and used as bait by an evil and dangerous cat called Jinx (voice of Hannah Waddingham) who has vowed to take revenge on Vic for the four years she spent locked in the pound. In order to free themselves, they must take part in a heist that will provide Jinx with an endless supply of milk and will (hopefully) make up for all the time she spent locked away. Garfield and Odie manage to enlist the help of an outcast bull called Otto (voice of Ving Rhames) who only wants to save the cow he loves from the company that is exploiting her and, in exchange for helping her escape, he is willing to give them access to the facility they need to rob. Things do not go quite according to plan and in the end – it will be up to Garfield to figure out the truth and to decide what and who is really worth saving.


Children and adolescents may react adversely at different ages to themes of crime, suicide, drug and alcohol dependence, death, serious illness, family breakdown, death or separation from a parent, animal distress or cruelty to animals, children as victims, natural disasters and racism. Occasionally reviews may also signal themes that some parents may simply wish to know about.

Abandonment; Family breakdown; Revenge; Animal exploitation.

Use of violenceinfo

Research shows that children are at risk of learning that violence is an acceptable means of conflict resolution when violence is glamourised, performed by an attractive hero, successful, has few real life consequences, is set in a comic context and / or is mostly perpetrated by male characters with female victims, or by one race against another.

Repeated exposure to violent content can reinforce the message that violence is an acceptable means of conflict resolution. Repeated exposure also increases the risks that children will become desensitised to the use of violence in real life or develop an exaggerated view about the prevalence and likelihood of violence in their own world.

There is some violence in this movie, including:

  • A baby Garfield is nearly hit by a car.
  • Two dogs destroy a pair of mannequins by ripping them apart.
  • Jinx catches and eats a bird that was trying to help her.
  • Garfield ricochets between two trees, he is kicked by a goat and flies into a windscreen, he flies off into a catapult where he is flung into the air, bounces off electricity wires and lands in a pile of manure.
  • Vic kicks Garfield off a train.
  • A small bird is electrocuted on a fence.
  • Garfield knocks his head into a tree.
  • Garfield is punched into a tree and one of his teeth falls out.
  • A possum smacks Garfield in the face.
  • Garfield pokes a possum with a stick.
  • Otto hits Garfield and knocks him off his feet.
  • Garfield and Vic get repeatedly punched, kicked, and squished by Otto.
  • Otto throws tree stumps at Garfield and Vic.
  • Garfield and Vic fall down a hill, slam into a tree and are crushed by a massive tree that is thrown at them.
  • Vic and Garfield punch, slap and hit each other while they wrestle with vines that are tethering them both to a tree.
  • A woman chases Vic with a broom.
  • A dog chases Vic away.
  • Garfield slams into a vent and he, Vic and Odie fall down a series of tunnels.
  • Garfield is nearly shredded by a giant cheese shredding machinery.
  • Garfield is nearly burned alive in fondue, and he is nearly sliced by numerous chopping blades. Vic rescues him at the last second and shows how the tip of his tail is chopped.
  • Garfield slaps a guard with something, trying to electrocute her, but she electrocutes him instead.
  • Otto is electrocuted against a fence.
  • A character is chased by people with tasers.
  • Garfield is nearly hit by three cars.
  • Jon is covered in candy when a dessert explodes.
  • Jinx has a whole series of pictures depicting how much she hates Vic and wants to kill him.
  • Garfield ricochets off different objects and crashes into Jinx.
  • Jinx goes after Garfield and Vic with an axe.
  • Garfield blasts meatballs at two dogs.
  • Garfield drinks hot sauce and blasts fire from his mouth at Jinx and her henchmen.
  • Jinx is about to have Garfield and Vic thrown off the train onto the sharp, jagged rocks below. When her two henchmen (holding Garfield and Vic) reconsider, she scratches them both and all four of them plummet off the train. They are saved at the last minute by Otto.
  • Jinx is hit in the head and knocked off a train.
  • Garfield kicks Vic off a train.

Material that may scare or disturb children

Under fiveinfo

Children under five are most likely to be frightened by scary visual images, such as monsters, physical transformations.

In addition to the above-mentioned violent scenes, there are some scenes in this movie that could scare or disturb children under the age of five, including the following:

  • Jinx is often made to look especially evil and menacing. She has red, glowing eyes, an evil laugh, is terrifying to other characters and is bent on destroying Vic. Some very young children may be disturbed by the menacing images of her, as lights are used to make her seem more sinister.
  • Some children may also be disturbed by Jinx’s strange-looking dog henchmen.
  • A black-hooded character looks like the Grim Reaper. Garfield and Odie are scared but it turns out to be a character in a dark hoodie.

Aged five to eightinfo

Children aged five to eight will also be frightened by scary visual images and will also be disturbed by depictions of the death of a parent, a child abandoned or separated from parents, children or animals being hurt or threatened and / or natural disasters.

In addition to the above-mentioned violent scenes and scary visual images, there are some scenes in this movie that could scare or disturb children aged five to eight, including the following:

  • Vic leaves a tiny kitten Garfield in an alleyway during a rainstorm one night. He promises to come back but it appears that he never does and Garfield, who is hungry, alone, and terrified by the strange sounds he encounters, must find his own way to survive. Later, Vic’s experience of what happened that night is shown and, once again, father and son are separated. Neither scene is scary, but they could potentially be upsetting to some children.

Aged eight to thirteeninfo

Children aged eight to thirteen are most likely to be frightened by realistic threats and dangers, violence or threat of violence and / or stories in which children are hurt or threatened.

  • Nothing further noted.

Product placement

The following products are displayed or used in this movie:

  • Jon is encouraged to try both Bumble and Tinder in order to find a date.
  • Olive Garden is mentioned as are their bread sticks.
  • Bluetooth is mentioned.
  • ‘Catflix’ is shown on TV, using the same red logo as Netflix.

Sexual references

  • None noted.

Nudity and sexual activity

There is some nudity and sexual activity in this movie, including:

  • A couple kisses in a film that characters are watching.
  • Two characters kiss passionately and romantic music plays.

Use of substances

There is some use of substances in this movie, including:

  • Jinx drinks milk out of martini glasses.

Coarse language

There is some coarse language in this movie, including:

  • Dang it!
  • Loser
  • Bloody
  • Half-wit.

In a nutshell

The Garfield Movie is an animated adventure, with a fast-paced plot, well-cast characters, and a powerful message on the importance of family. The film is suitable for all but the youngest of viewers.

The main messages from this movie are that not everything is as it seems; that there is nothing more powerful than a parent’s love for their child (or pet); and that family is more important than anything.

Values in this movie that parents may wish to reinforce with their children include:

  • Forgiveness
  • Understanding
  • Teamwork
  • Compassion
  • Courage.

This movie could also give parents the opportunity to discuss with their children attitudes and behaviours, and their real-life consequences, such as:

  • Making assumptions about people or situations without talking to the individuals or getting to know the circumstances first.
  • Seeking revenge instead of attempting to forgive and failing to understand another’s point of view.
  • Using animals for profit and financial gain despite the harmful effects this may cause.