The Secret Life of Pets: Film Review – Pets – As Never Before

Verdict: A warm story about pets, filled with adventure and interesting characters.

From the same guys that got us the highly adored ‘Despicable Me’ series, comes another warm film, about pets. Illumination Entertainment has produced a film that one might wonder why wasn’t done before. Of course, all animated films have talking animals and the likes, and while this one is no different, it is a refreshing take, with a focussed angle on pets. Think Toy Story, but based on pets. 

Set in Manhattan, the film follows the life of spoilt terrier Max (Louis CK), who is owned by Katie (Ellie Kemper). His friends are fellow pets like Chloe (Lake Bell), Mel (Bobby Moynihan), Buddy (Hannibal Buress), and Sweet Pea (Tara Strong). Max’s comfortable life comes to a halt, when owner Katie adopts a big sloppy dog called Duke (Eric Stonestreet). As you could expect, Max is upset about this, as he isn’t the only loved child anymore. 

The ego clashes soon get out of hand when they turn against each other, eventually getting lost in the city of Manhattan. Led by pomeranian Gidget (Jenny Slate), a team sets out to find them. Perhaps owing to the fact that she has a crush on Max, she is adamant on finding him. She is the most adorable fluffball you’ll ever see, with a voice so cute you will want to take her home right away. What follows is an absolute adventure, with the introduction of characters like rabbit Snowball (Kevin Hart), among others. Snowball, with his twisted agendas, is the leader of ‘The Flushed Pets’, an association of all types of abandoned pets, who obviously resent humans.


The voice cast is brilliant, with nearly every member being a comedian. Considering this, the characters have excellent comic timing, although most dialogues are not laugh-out-loud funny, with some scenes resorting to slap-stick. But that’s what you would expect in a movie for children.
The film also gently depicts how certain pets are natured. Some cat lovers may get a bit touchy, as cats are not shown in the best light. One such dialogue is: "Dude, I’m a cat," to which an elderly dog responds, "we can’t all be perfect…" Thankfully it is a bit of a banter, as Chloe the cat says: "Dog owners are weird. They do weird things, like – own dogs".

Keep in mind, the adventure begins as soon as Katie leaves the house and ends when she returns home, which is the end of the film. Now, the end of the film is perhaps the most heartwarming part of the film, and might actually convince you to get a pet, if you don’t already have one. You certainly won’t look at your pets the same way again! The tagline says it all: ‘Ever wonder what your pets do when you’re not home?’ Guess we’ll never really know…


Why You Should Watch This Movie:

It’s perfect for a family watch, the children will surely be entertained with this animal adventure.

Release Date: 06 Jul, 2016
Language: English
Director: Chris Renaud, Yarrow Cheney
Genre: Animation, Comedy
Cast & Crew: Louis C.K., Eric Stonestreet, Kevin Hart, Steve Coogan, Ellie Kemper, Bobby Moynihan, Lake Bell, Hannibal Buress, Albert Brooks, Jenny Slate

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