Back left
Back right

A Dog's Journey Blu-ray Review - Dogs are friends forever!

A heart-warming story comes home with some great extra features!

Aug 21, 2019

A Dog's Journey Blu-ray Review - Dogs are friends forever! - Reviewed by Kidzworld on Aug 21, 2019
( Rating: 4 Star Rating)

Kidzworld checked out the Blu-ray for A Dog’s Journey. This heartwarming and emotionally-charged film comes home with some really fun and entertaining extra features. Read our cool Blu-ray review!

By: Lynn Barker

The book and movie A Dog’s Purpose continues in A Dog’s Journey. Smart and sweet doggie Bailey (voiced again by Josh Gad) loves living on the Michigan farm of his "boy," Ethan (Dennis Quaid) and Ethan's wife Hannah (Marg Helgenberger) who are grandparents of very young granddaughter C.J. She has a mutual lovefest with Bailey. However, C.J.’s very negative mom Gloria (Betty Gilpin) had rather have a music career than raise a baby on a boring farm and moves away with little C.J. When Bailey is passing on and ready for a new life, he promises Ethan to find C.J. and protect her at all costs. Can he keep this promise?

A Dog's Journey Clip - "Unconditional Love"

 

Living on the Farm

When Hannah’s son Henry dies in an auto accident, his wife Gloria and baby C.J. come to live with Hannah and Ethan. Gloria is far from a friendly, attentive mom, however and refuses to leave C.J. with Hannah while she goes to pursue a singing career.

Gloria announces she is leaving with C.J.Gloria announces she is leaving with C.J.Courtesy of Universal Studios

Instead, after blaming a few bad parenting moments on dog Bailey, she takes C.J. and hits the road. When elderly Bailey is dying, Ethan asks him to come back, find C.J. and protect her. We know Bailey will.

It's Bailey's time to pass onIt's Bailey's time to pass onCourtesy of Universal Studios

Another Life

Doggie Bailey is reincarnated as a beagle puppy named Molly whose brother Rocky is adopted by a cute Asian boy named Trent. He knows the now tween-aged C.J.

Young C.J. with Molly and young TrevorYoung C.J. with Molly and young TrevorCourtesy of Universal Studios

She wants to adopt Molly but knows mom Gloria hates dogs. C.J. hides Molly and since Gloria drinks too much and is out a lot, she doesn’t notice the dog for a long time. Molly and C.J. meet and play with Trent and Rocky. Finally mom discovers Molly but reluctantly lets C.J. keep her. As they go through high school Trent would like C.J. to be his girlfriend. Hannah and Ethan try to visit but Gloria turns them away telling C.J. that they tried to steal the money dad left for her. 

Unhappy Gloria doesn't like dogsUnhappy Gloria doesn't like dogsCourtesy of Universal Studios

Bad Boyfriend  

18-year-old C.J. (Kathryn Prescott) who now wants to be a singer/songwriter, meets a low-life but cute guy named Shane (Jake Manley) who is into booze, drugs and partying. For a while C.J. tries to go along but when a party is busted by the cops, she is sent to jail. Trent takes care of Molly. C.J.’s community service sentence at a facility training dogs to sniff out cancer ends in Molly being a natural at it. When Shane grabs C.J., attacking her, she tells her drunk mom, who couldn’t care less. Mom also tells her she has no inheritance from her dad. Mom spent it a long time ago! C.J. is shattered. She leaves home in the family car only to be followed and chased by angry Shane in his car. A wreck follows and little Molly is killed.

Will C.J. and Trevor be a couple?Will C.J. and Trevor be a couple?Courtesy of Universal Studios

New Life

Bailey/Molly reincarnates this time as a huge mastiff dog called Big Dog by his gas station owner Joe. He has almost given up on finding C.J. but fate puts her at the gas station on her way to start a music career in New York City. She has no idea that he is the reincarnated Molly and goes on her way.

C.J. meets Big DogC.J. meets Big DogCourtesy of Universal Studios

Sad Big Dog leads a nice life with Joe but ends up dying before ever finding C.J. again. This time he comes back as a feisty tiny terrier puppy dubbed Max. Max is up for adoption but won’t let anyone but C.J. adopt him. He snaps at everyone and is almost scheduled for euthanasia when he spots C.J., chases after her and leaps into her arms. She adopts him.

Molly adopts MaxMolly adopts MaxCourtesy of Universal Studios

Another Bad Boyfriend

Trying to make it as a singer while dog walking to earn money, Molly lives with her uptight, critical boyfriend Barry (Kevin Claydon) who has his own dog Duke and keeps telling C.J. she’ll never make it as a singer. She still has stage fright and won’t sing in public.

C.J. walks dogs for a livingC.J. walks dogs for a livingCourtesy of Universal Studios

Max leads C.J. to run into Trent (Henry Lau) who has moved to NYC from London and has a girlfriend Liesl (Daniella Barbosa) who is very possessive of him. Barry and C.J. break up and she sleeps on friends’ couches finally ending up staying in Trent’s guest room.

Illness for Trent

Little Max smells cancer on Trent. His girlfriend ditches him and it is C.J. who sees him through treatment to health. Mom Gloria has cleaned up her act, meets with a reluctant C.J. who can’t forgive her. Mom encourages her to bite the bullet and sing in public.

C.J. finally performs in publicC.J. finally performs in publicCourtesy of Universal Studios

With Trent’s support, she sings at a club and is a big success. After reading some letters Gloria gave her from her dad, C.J. wants to visit Ethan and Hannah at their farm.

Ethan, Hannah and Bailey on the farmEthan, Hannah and Bailey on the farmCourtesy of Universal Studios

A Happy Ending?

While C.J., Trent and Max are visiting the farm, Ethan senses that Max is really Bailey and proves it to C.J. who realizes that the other dogs in her life were Bailey as well. She also realizes that she actually loves Trent. Will their relationship blossom? What is in store for Max next and what’s going to happen to C.J., Trent and her family? What is Bailey’s eventual fate?

Trevor has always loved C.J.Trevor has always loved C.J.Courtesy of Universal Studios

Special Extra Features

This Blu-ray/DVD/Digital set looks and sounds great and contains a bunch of really enjoyable extra features.

  • 10 Deleted or Extended Scenes are all wonderful and are either adorable, dog-centered or build the characters well. All are very worth watching!

Young C.J. is fun-lovingYoung C.J. is fun-lovingCourtesy of Universal Studios
  • Gag Reel is a hoot. It is focused on dogs doing cute things on set that aren’t part of the script, dogs licking faces etc., Dennis Quaid who plays Ethan, joking with kids and dogs, a bug attack etc. Very silly fun to watch.
  • Working with Dogs –all of the film’s major actors tell us why they love working with dogs. Filmmakers and some actors bring their dogs to set. Dog trainers talk about training the film’s dogs with love and trust and they give tips on training your dog.  Dennis Quaid tells us how he felt a special bond with the dog playing Bailey. Soooo sweet.

Ethan and Bailey always playEthan and Bailey always playCourtesy of Universal Studios
  • A Dog’s Sequel – Josh Gad, the voice of Bailey in two films says he cried on reading the script. The other actors talk about their characters. The actress who plays meanie Gloria tells us she actually loves dogs and found it hard to be at all mean to them in the movie. Director Gail Mancuso on the story’s drama for dogs and people. Nice.
  • Everyone’s Best Friend presents all the actors talking about their personal dogs at home and the bond they feel with them. Some of them came to set. One actress has cats and dogs at home, one actor can’t wait to adopt a dog etc. Awwww.

Grandma and Bailey play with little C.J.Grandma and Bailey play with little C.J.Courtesy of Universal Studios
  • A Healing Journey concentrates on the reincarnation story with filmmakers and the book author talking about the possibility that animals can “come back” in other animals and our feeling that connection. The film helps kids, teens and even adults deal with the passing of a beloved pet. Cool.
  • Scoring the Journey deals with the film’s very touching soundtrack and a young pianist who loves dogs and provided some of the best of the film’s score. So cool!
  • Audio Commentary with Director Gail Mancuso is interesting as the director, who loves dogs, tells us about the scenes and filming process, working with the dogs etc.

Wrapping Up

As we said in our review when this film was in theaters, the movie is a mixed bag; very entertaining and heartwarming but with a lot of emotional push and pull that makes us feel like we are a dog on a leash being jerked through the lives and especially the passings of lots of cute dogs… there are four of them! 

C.J. has to hide MollyC.J. has to hide MollyCourtesy of Universal Studios

If you can rally and root for the “next dog” each time Bailey passes then you will enjoy the film.

Max/Bailey is glad CJ. and Trevor are togetherMax/Bailey is glad CJ. and Trevor are togetherCourtesy of Universal Studios

The extras provided on this Blu-ray/DVD/Digital set are wonderful and upbeat. They are so warm, funny and cuddly that they make us go up to four stars on this take home version of the film.

A Dog's Journey Blu-ray Rating: 4

Courtesy of Universal Studios

A Dog’s Journey home entertainment sets are out to purchase now! 

Share Your Feelings!

What about your dog, cat or other pet lets you know they will love you forever? Do you sometimes think your current pet is just like one you had in the past? Do you like movies that center on animals?  Let’s hear from you with a comment here or on your Kidzworld profile page!