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Film Review: The Secret Life of Pets 2 (2019) Harrison's Remarkable Voice Acting

Updated: May 4

Film Review: The Secret Life of Pets 2 (2019) Harrison's Remarkable Voice Acting
FILE PHOTO: A Poster of THE SECRET LIFE OF PETS 2 (2019). ©Universal Studios

This 3D computer animated film is very successful in that all pets are attractive and lovely for all ages. The most influential factor in this film was Harrison Ford who played an ''Oz'' like-MENTOR role in this film, which is called Rooster, a Welsh Sheepdog. Many countries and regions dubbed original English actors with local voice actors. Thus, the English version is highly recommended. 

The audience will notice that there are sakura trees in the New York City sequence. It is a visual signature of Japanese landscapes in spring. It sends the audience a signal that The Secret Life of Pets 2 (2019) is not any kind of antithesis to Hayao Miyazaki's (1941-) animation films. On the contrary, it is quite harmonious with Miyazaki's world and his spirit. In fact, there is not any barrier between Miyazaki animation fans and Pets fans. The actual protagonists and roles are not humans, but all are pets. Thus, the story structure is unique and twisted from live action movies. The development of the film's story is not concentrated on one character, while the main conflict is basically the same. As a result, the pace of the film is pretty slow from the beginning to the middle of the entire film. The story is not driven by one protagonist, many characters are in charge of the main plot as an ensemble drama.

It is also the reason for the decentralization of the story structure. 

Story Structure ''EXPOSITION'' ACT1: The protagonist Max, a Jack Russell Terrier (Patton Oswalt), and its owner Katie (Ellie Kemper)'s family, take a road trip to their relative's farm. The inciting incident is not this change of location from New York to the farm. It is when Max accidentally breaks the cattle grid and some sheep escape, then the farm's tough sheepdog, Rooster, decides to retrieve the missing sheep with Max. The end of ACT1 is when Max successfully retrieves the missing sheep from the cliff, and gets Rooster's trust. At the end, Rooster presents Max with his handkerchief as a symbol of his trust. 

''DEVELOPMENT"ACT2: The first half of ACT2 is composed about a conflict around Busy Bee, which is Max's favorite toy left for his girlfriend Gidget (Jenny Slate), a white Pomeranian. Gidget accidentally loses it in one of the apartment rooms where she is infected by a bunch of cats and owned by a cat lady (Meredith Salenger). Later, Chloe (Lake Bell), a morbidly obese and apathetic gray tabby cat, trains Gidget on how to be a cat. As a result, not only does Gidget successfully retrieve Busy Bee with Plan B, but is hailed by a bunch of cats as the queen of cats. Midpoint: Chloe and Snowball (Kevin Hart), a white rabbit and former flushed pet, is Daisy (Tiffany Haddish), a Shih Tzu, and decide to rescue a white tiger named Hu which is tortured by the abusive Russian circus owner Sergei. The rest of the ACT2 is after Daisy and Snowball free Hu at Pops (Dana Carvey), an elderly Basset Hound's apartment. Hu is kicked out of there, so they hide him at Max's apartment. At the END of ACT2, Max and Duke's family come back from the trip, the Russian circus owner Sergei (Nick Kroll) sends his black wolves to track Daisy down with her flower clip she dropped, and Sergei captures Hu. This is the most dangerous and intensified moment for the characters. 

''CONFRONTATION''ACT3: Sergei escapes on the train, and Snowball, Max, hamster Norman (Chris Renaud), a guinea pig, and Gidget chase the train. Max and Snowball defeat Sergei's monkeys and wolves. They kick Sergei off the train, then Gidget knocks him out with the cat lady's car. Finally, they free Daisy and Hu. The Secret Life of Pets 2 (2019) is a good example of the Three Act Structure in ensemble drama. It is not so simple as a more individualistic structure, but it proved that the Three Act Structure actually works and fits and proves to be adaptable to an ensemble drama. 

This animation film is good for all ages of audience.


Any part of this report may be disseminated without permission, provided attribution to the professional film writer Ryota Nakanishi as author and a link to is provided.

This film article is for educational purpose only.

Copyright Disclaimer Under Section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976, allowance is made for "fair use" for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. Fair use is a use permitted by copyright statute that might otherwise be infringing. Non-profit, educational or personal use tips the balance in favour of fair use.

Film Review: The Secret Life of Pets 2 (2019) Harrison's Remarkable Voice Acting


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