Told from a dog's perspective, Universal Pictures' feel-good movie A Dog's Purpose shares the heartwarming and surprising story of one devoted dog (voiced by Frozen's Josh Gad) who finds the meaning of his own existence through the lives of the humans he teaches to laugh and love.
Over the course of five decades, a single voice-that of an indefatigable dog-takes us along a riveting and uplifting path that speaks to the heart of anyone who has ever loved an animal. Although he is reincarnated in the bodies of multiple canines through the years, it is his unbreakable bond with a kindred spirit named Ethan that carries and inspires one dog throughout his journey to find a true purpose for his boy.
In 1962, eight-year-old Ethan Montgomery (Bryce Gheisar) and his mother (Juliet Rylance) rescue a Golden Retriever puppy they discover suffering inside a hot car. Despite the reservations of Ethan's father (Luke Kirby), the family adopts the pup they name Bailey, and the friendship of a lifetime ensues.
Bailey is wholly the responsibility of Ethan – who feeds, walks and trains his puppy, as well as teaches him unforgettable tricks along the way. As Ethan becomes a teenager (KJ Apa) , he finds his first romantic love in the charming and caring Hannah (Tomorrowland's Britt Robertson), while remaining inseparable with his faithful Bailey.
Fresh off of a football career-ending injury and a devastating breakup with Hannah, Ethan heads to college to begin his next chapter. Unable to bring Bailey with him, he has to leave his trusty companion at home. While away at school, the aging Bailey becomes sick, and Ethan makes it to the veterinarian just in time for their final goodbye. Ethan is inconsolable.
Just as we think that is the end of their bond...Bailey is reborn in the body of Ellie, a German Shepherd K-9 first responder with the Chicago Police Department. Indeed, no one is more surprised at this turn of events than the wiggly puppy who knows he is still Ethan's best friend. The audience next meets reincarnations of Bailey as a Corgi named Tino, then an Australian Shepherd/St. Bernard mix named Buddy.
Though Bailey is unsure why his soul keeps returning again and again for new adventures, he will discover that the purpose of his many lifetimes is more crucial to his boy than he could have ever imagined.
Joining the talented cast of A Dog's Purpose are Dennis Quaid and Peggy Lipton as Ethan and Hannah as adults; John Ortiz as Carlos, Ellie's police officer owner; Kirby Howell-Baptiste as Maya, Tino's human; Pooch Hall as Al, Maya's love interest; and Nicole Laplaca and Primo Allon as Wendi and Victor, Buddy's neglectful owners, whose carelessness will ultimately lead our hero home.
Director Lasse Hallstrom, A Dog's Purpose is adapted for the screen by Cameron & Cathryn Michon (Muffin Top: A Love Story) and Audrey Wells (Shall We Dance) and Maya Forbes (Infinitely Polar Bear) & Wally Wolodarsky (Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days).