You’ve got everything in this sequel to A Dog’s Purpose (2017). A Dog’s Journey (2019) delights audiences once again with teary moments, sweet scenes, a little bit of action, adorable puppies, emotional storylines and plenty of feel-good moments — much like its prequel.
It goes without saying that most sequels are never as good as the first. This one is an exception to that generalisation. It’s great, if not better than the first film. Once again, we follow Bailey the dog, voiced by Josh Gad, as he is reincarnated as different breeds belonging to various owners, all the while focusing on Ethan’s happiness.
In the sequel, we see Ethan talk to Bailey about making sure his step-granddaughter CJ, played by Kathryn Prescott, is OK. So that becomes Bailey’s new purpose, and in turn helps him unravel the meaning of his own existence through the lives of the humans he meets. He’s there when CJ needs him most, and helps lead CJ’s life in the right direction again and again. Much like Bailey did with Ethan, Bailey tries to show CJ he’s the puppy from her childhood, just in a different reincarnation.
“I had a lot of lives, all different,” said Bailey. “Sometimes I was big, and sometimes I was small.”
Bailey is an extremely caring soul who, throughout the course of several lifetimes and owners, always shows gratitude and appreciation to them, yet wonders where Ethan is and if he’s OK. Whether he comes back as a girl dog or a boy dog, a small dog or a big dog, he always remembers his purpose to look after Ethan (and later CJ) who rescued him in 1962. The audience watches as fate intersects during Bailey’s journey to discover his purpose of life.