Secret Life of Pets is Perfectly Fine

Four movies left, ladies and gents. Unless you count Hop. Which I’m not, since it’s not fully animated. Sorry, hardcore Hop fans.

Secret Life of Pets is a nice bit of refreshment after the last few Illumination movies. Not because it’s incredible, but simply because it isn’t offensively awful or obnoxious. It’s a perfectly fine, if somewhat unoriginal, animated kids movie. One that I didn’t mind watching.

Max the dog lives a happy life with his owner Katie in their small New York apartment. When Katie adopts a new pet, the massive and messy Duke, Max becomes jealous. The two bicker back and forth before their collars are stolen and the two are left for animal control. Now they need to put their differences aside to get back home safely. Cute animal hijinks ensue.

So… it’s Toy Story, but with animals. Okay, sure. That’s fine. I like Toy Story!

Originality jokes aside, the story here is perfectly fine. It’s your standard kids movie fare about cute animated animals learning a valuable life lesson. It’s safe, predictable, and inoffensive.

Honestly? That’s fine. I’ll take an alright movie over the crap I’ve had to watch for the last few weeks. At least this one doesn’t have Minions in it.

Animation wise, this movie isn’t especially interesting. It’s got some decent character designs, but that’s the most impressive thing about it. In terms of style or technical finesse, it’s no better or worse than any of the other Illumination movies.

The same applies to the music. You know the drill by now. Generic orchestral arrangements and the occasional inserted pop song. It isn’t all that memorable or good.

Still better than the Dr. Seuss Illumination movies…

Secret Life of Pets is a perfectly fine movie. It may not be mind-bogglingly incredible, but at least it isn’t entirely miserable to watch. If you need something simple and decently enjoyable to watch with your kids, you could pick a lot worse than this one.

Can the same be said for its sequel? Probably not.

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