The Secret Life of Pets: Louis C.K. & Kevin Hart Carry Furry Animated Fun
Albert BrooksEllie Kemper...
In 1 Cinema
The latest original creation from Illumination Entertainment comes in the form of the irresistible but not completely flawless, The Secret Life of Pets; a delightfully witty and feverishly energetic piece of furry summer entertainment which might not have all of the laughs, but, plenty of heart to win anyone over.
The story is told mainly through the eyes of Max (voiced by comedian Louis C.K); a loyal terrier who lives in a Manhattan apartment complex with his owner Katie (Kemper) with whom he is completely in love and obsessed with. However, when Katie brings home a big hairy mutt of a dog named, Duke (Stonestreet), his reign as Katie’s number one man is soon threatened, forcing the two dogs to compete for dominance and their owner’s affection.
Their rivalry however, soon finds the two dogs in a situation which no dog wants to face; on the street, collarless and hunted by Animal Control. Somehow, the two manage to escape with the help of ‘The Flushed Pets’; a band of abandoned pets who now live in the sewers of New York City, led by a deranged white rabbit named Snowball (Hart). Coming to realise that another escape plan is very much required, the two dogs unite and begin working together to break free from Snowball’s army of animals whilst Max’s next-door neighbour Gidget (Slate) – a white Pomeranian who is hopelessly in love with Max – starts assembling all of the pets from their building to go out and bring Max home.
Carried by a brisk pace and liveliness that sometimes refuses to let go, The Secret Life of Pets is a sweet-natured tale of friendship, which tells the story of a group of New York City pets – who enjoy a special kind of existence when their owners leave for the day- with a great deal of heart and wit. Like Toy Story, the plot is told from within a world unseen by humans, but unlike the award-winning animated film, the story here lacks as enough substance and the emotional depth to connect to the wacky world it presents.
Visually pleasing, the sweeping shots of New York City – as well as the movie’s continuously colourful and vibrant appearance – are satisfying throughout, while the storyline itself is quick to move in and out of scenes, resulting in a very few moments of dullness.
Boasting an interesting line-up of characters, including the forever-restless pug Mel (Moynihan), a determined parakeet named Sweet Pea (Strong), a lethargic and constantly-hungry tabby cat, Chloe (Bell), and the easy-going dachshund Buddy (Buress), the voice casting is strong and Louis C.K, Stonestreet and Hart bring their A-game.
Funny, whacky and at times a little fuzzy, The Secret Life of Pets is no Toy Story, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t have its own voice and charm.