There is apparently a sizable overlap between people who like films in which cute dogs scamper around happily, and people who like films in which cute dogs drop dead every half an hour. In 2017, “A Dog’s Purpose” catered to both groups by telling the tale of Bailey, whose soul transmigrates into the body of a newborn pup whenever he dies. He is granted a different name, breed, and (sometimes) gender with each metempsychosis, but his enthusiastic thoughts are always voiced by Josh Gad
, and he retains his loyalty to his favorite master, Ethan, played in the film’s later scenes by Dennis Quaid
Critics agreed that “A Dog’s Purpose” was, well, a dog, but Bailey, who can recall his past lives, is back in the sequel, “A Dog’s Journey”.
Again, it is a glossily nostalgic and moralistic Nicholas Sparks
-style melodrama co-written by W. Bruce Cameron
, and adapted from his novel.