Film Review: “The Secret Life of Pets 2”

  • THE SECRET LIFE OF PETS 2
  • Starring the voices of: Kevin Hart, Patton Oswalt
  • Directed by:  Chris Renaud, Jonathan del Val
  • Rated:  PG
  • Running time:  1 hr 26 mins
  • Universal

If you are a pet owner, I’m pretty sure you’ve seen, and loved, “The Secret Life of Pets.”  It was uncanny how the creators captured the little idiosyncrasies that had many in the audience, myself including, thinking “that’s exactly what my dog/cat/bird/ferret, etc does.  And that insight carries over into the second chapter in the adventures of Max (Oswalt) and his furry and feathered friends.

Things are going well for Max.  His owner attends to his every need and all is right with the world.  Until the day she meets a gentleman.  Nothing wrong with that.  But as things progress, as they do in life, Max soon finds himself having to deal with a new person in his life…a baby.  At first he is wary of the new arrival, but as the boy grows, they form a bond that, anyone who had a dog as a child will know, can’t be broken.  Which makes Max frantic.  Where he used to enjoy going for walks, he now feels the streets, and the things encountered (steam grates, flocks of pigeons) are hazards for the boy.  This causes him to develop a nervous tic which sadly leads him to be encased in, what both my wife and I (and the film) call the cone of shame.

Meanwhile, in another part of town, Snowball the bunny (Hart) is also enjoying life.  His owner likes to dress him up as a superhero and he takes to the idea, proclaiming his prowess to his pet friends.  He is quick to jump – do you see what I did there – into action when he is asked by his Shih Tzu friend Daisy (Tiffany Haddish) to help save a tiger being held by a cruel circus worker.  What’s a bunny to do?

Cleverly written and fast paced, “The Secret Life of Pets 2” is the ideal early summer film.  The characters and their traits are spot on and the voice actors do their best to inflect some of their own personalities into the characters.  Oswalt, replacing original Max voicer Louis C.K., is well cast.  Of course, he was outstanding as the voice of Renny in “Ratatouille,” so this should come as no surprise.  Hart once again is the frantic Snowball and I’m happy to see he is no longer homicidal (my one big problem with the first film).  Other actors lending their voice include Eric Stonestreet, Jenny Slate, Nick Kroll, Ellie Kemper and Pete Holmes.  Even Harrison Ford shows up, marking his animated film debut.  But as great as they all are, the vocal star here is Lake Bell, who seems to inhabit the character of Chloe, a cat like no other and yet like every cat we’ve ever encountered!

My only fault with the film is the same one I had with the first.  Though obviously geared for kids (and the parents that accompany them), there are some scary moments here, including one (thankfully off camera) of the tiger being disciplined with a whip.  There is also a pretty intense pack of wolves that made at least one child near me at the screening hide her face in her mother’s side.  So parents with very young children, be warned.

All in all, though, “The Secret Life of Pets 2” is a welcome treat to begin the early days of summer.

CBD Treats for Dogs & Pets Buying Guide & Review

If you’re here, you’re no doubt a dog lover that absolutely adores your Fido. You also probably know a little bit about CBD, or cannabidiol.

If the latter isn’t true, however, that’s just fine. This guide will be a quick primer on what CBD is, how it can help your beloved pet, and what to look out for when you’re considering purchasing Simply Pets CBD Biscuits.

First, let’s talk about what CBD is all about and why it works so well.

What is CBD?

Cannabidiol, or CBD, is one of the compounds within the cannabis plant.

First off, it’s important to not confuse CBD with THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol, which is the compound that has psychoactive effects and is known for creating a feeling of “highness”. For the record, hemp itself has very low levels of THC. While CBD derived from the marijuana plant will have higher levels, all legitimate pet products that are derived from the hemp plant will carry a note regarding THC levels, which are regulated down to a practically non-existent presence.

CBD is beneficial to dogs,cats, and humans alike. It’s a nontoxic, completely natural solution to a variety of ailments, which we’ll get to in a moment.

What can CBD do for my dog?

The most common reason that pet owners choose a CBD product to give to their pet is general pain or anxiety.

Especially for dogs with significant chronic pain, CBD can be a game changer. This could include neuropathy or nerve-related pain, as well as joint and bone issues. The biggest benefit is related to potential inflammation, which CBD is known for helping to reduce.

Of course, less inflammation invariably leads to less overall pain. And reducing inflammation is the No. 1 thing that CBD products work to do in pets. It isn’t just joints, bones, and external issues,either, but CBD can help with internal organs and other parts of the dog’s body that might be inflamed.

There is even quite a bit of research to suggest that CBD could help fight cancer, and while this hasn’t yet been proven definitively, there are plenty of ancillary benefits.

What should I look for in CBD dog treats?

The majority of CBD dog treats that you’ll find on the market are 100 percent natural, and that’s the first thing to look for as you’re exploring your options. If it isn’t promoted as completely natural, then you’re probably looking at a product that was exposed to pesticides and things of that nature.

You’ll also want to ensure that the product you select has been lab tested. As mentioned earlier, knowing the THC content is vital, too. Make sure that nothing you’re giving your dog has high contents of THC.

And again, the majority of CBD dog treats will have the above traits noted on the packaging but be sure that you’re paying close attention to it.

Are CBD treats the right choice for my dog?

Probably! Of course, these types of decisions are entirely up to you as the pet parent, but there isn’t any research to suggest that CBD dog treats or other CBD products could be harmful to your dog, so why not find a natural, holistic solution to whatever ails your beloved puppy?

Make sure to do all of the research mentioned above and go ahead and get to helping your dog feel better!

Blu-ray 3D/4K Ultra HD Review “The Secret Life of Pets”

Actors: Louis C.K., Eric Stonestreet, Kevin Hart, Jenny Slate, Ellie Kemper
Directors: Chris Renaud
Rated: PG
Studio: Universal Studios Home Entertainment
Release Date: December 6, 2016
Run Time: 91 minutes

Film: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Blu-ray: 5 out of 5 stars
3D: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Extras: 4 out of 5 stars

From the moment I saw the first teaser for “The Secret Life of Pets“, I knew that Illumination Entertainment had another hit on there hands. The characters are amazing and the film is filled with laughs from beginning to end. It has jokes for kids and parents as well. In fact, my family (no lie) quote this film AT LEAST once a day since the first time that we have seen it. It packs a really solid voice cast including Louis C.K., Eric Stonestreet, Kevin Hart and many others. I hope that they have some sort of plans to follow up with this series because they really have a winner here! Can’t wait to see what Illumination, home of the Minions, does next!

Official Premise: Comedy superstars Louis C.K., Eric Stonestreet, and Kevin Hart make their animated feature-film debut that finally answers the question: what do your pets do when you’re not home? When their owners leave for the day, pets from the building gossip with their friends, satisfy their sweet tooths, and throw outrageous parties. But when a pampered terrier (C.K.) and his unruly new “roommate” from the pound (Stonestreet) get lost in the urban jungle of New York City, they must put aside their differences to survive the epic journey back home.

Universal released this film in in various formats i.e. Blu-ray, Blu-ray 3D and 4K Ultra HD. The animation and colors are so vivid and vibrant and this film looks extraordinary with it’s 4K transfer. I was blown away with this presentation. The 3D presentation on this film was also top notch. As we are whizzing through the streets of New York as well as close up encounters with fellow characters like Viper, the effects are spot on! If you can watch this film in either of those formats, I highly recommend it for sure! The audio tracks also are epic with a revolutionary Dolby Atmos track as well as wall shaking Dolby TrueHD 7.1. Universal delivered for sure with A/V presentation here for sure!

The special features are all short and sweet and worth checking out if you enjoyed this flick. Kids can enjoy as well. There are three mini-movies included. One we saw before the film in theaters “Minion Mowers”, which is hysterical. There are also two new ones set within the world of “The Secret Life of Pets”. First is NormanTV, which features the gerbil from the film crawling through the buildings vents. The last one is an animated musical tale of the hot dog brand that Max and Duke end up at. These are a great addition to the film itself and are also available if the film is redeem digitally as well, so that’s a nice bonus.

Next up, we have “The Humans That Brought You Pets” which feature interviews with Producers Chris Meledandri and Janet Healy, Directors Yarrow Cheney and Chris Renaud, and Writer Brian Lynch. “Animals Can Talk: Meet the Actors” are speed chats with the cast talking about their roles. “All About the Pets” features cast joking on set with animal trainer Molly O’Neill. “Hairstylist to the Dogs” features Duke’s voice actor Eric Stonestreet talking grooming with Stylist Jess Rona. “How to Make an Animated film” and “Anatomy of a Scene” go behind-the-scenes. Lastly there is a nice collection of “The Best of Snowball” and some sing-alongs and trailers.

Related Content

Enter to Win Complimentary Passes to an Orlando, FL Screening of “The Secret Life of Pets”

If you would like to enter for a chance to win tickets to the following advance screening below, please leave a comment below with your favorite pet from this film? Winners will be chosen on a RANDOM BASIS on Sunday July 3rd. Winners will be awarded an ADMIT TWO passes and will be notified via email. NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Only one entry per person/per household. Must be 13 years or older to enter to win. Employees of all promotional partners and their agencies are not eligible.

Theater: AMC Altamonte
Date: Tuesday, July 5, 2016
Time: 7:00 PM

For their fifth fully-animated feature-film collaboration, Illumination Entertainment and Universal Pictures present The Secret Life of Pets, a comedy about the lives our pets lead after we leave for work or school each day.

Comedy superstars Louis C.K., Eric Stonestreet and Kevin Hart make their animated feature-film debuts in The Secret Life of Pets, which co-stars Jenny Slate, Ellie Kemper, Lake Bell, Dana Carvey, Hannibal Buress, Bobby Moynihan, Steve Coogan and Albert Brooks.  Illumination founder and CEO Chris Meledandri and his longtime collaborator Janet Healy produce the film directed by Chris Renaud (Despicable Me, Despicable Me 2), codirected by Yarrow Cheney and written by Cinco Paul & Ken Daurio and Brian Lynch. 

http://www.TheSecretLifeOfPets.com/
https://www.facebook.com/SecretLifeOfPets
https://twitter.com/PetsMovie
https://www.instagram.com/SecretLifeOfPets/
https://www.youtube.com/user/DespicableMeMovie

Related Content

Book Review “Disney Palace Pets: Guess Who Castle Cuties”

Age Range: 3 – 5 years
Grade Level: Preschool – Kindergarten
Series: Guess Who
Hardcover: 10 pages
Publisher: Reader’s Digest
Release Date: August 12, 2014

Our Score: 5 out of 5 stars

Disney is not dumb at all. They released a free app for kids called “Disney Palace Pets”. Parents probably though…”Hey, it’s free”. But I have spent more money in Disney Palace Pets merchandise in the last few months than any other Disney product. There are not only the app but also action figures and other books as well. But let you tell you I love everything that comes out of this series. When I see my daughters face when you interacts with these characters, there is nothing better in the world.

Official Premise: Young Disney Princess fans will have hours of fun listening to the rhymes and guessing which adorable Disney Palace Pet is hidden behind each flap in this enchanting hardcover book that includes sparkly glitter on the cover. With their hug-me expressions, big eyes, and dainty curls, characters such as Aurora’s darling kitty, Rapunzels’ prancing pony, and Cinderella’s playful pup are sure to win everyone’s heart.

This new book,  “Disney Palace Pets: Guess Who Castle Cuties” features our favorite Disney Princesses and, of course, their pets. The text is simple and rhymes well. It also includes sturdy flaps to lift and find these little cuties. This is a not a flimsy book each. I have seen numerous flap books that rip right away but this one is holding up well. I have no idea how my daughter does it but she not only knows ever Princess but also their corresponding Palace Pets. A must have book

 

Related Content

XBOX 360 Game Review “The Sims 3: Pets”

Platform: Xbox 360
Publisher: Electronic Arts
Category: Simulation

Our Score: 3 out 5 stars

Who doesn’t love pets…and games about pets? Ever since Nintendo releases their “Nintendogs + Cats” series, it changed the way people look at these types of games. Combine that with the insane popularity of “The Sims” and should have a winning combination.  This game definitely has it fun and cute moments but lacks the want to come back continuously.  This latest edition of “The Sims” is also not a major improvement from past editions.  It still though has good graphics but also  a some lag in a few spots but nothing major.  Hardcore fans of “The Sims” should appreciate the expansion of the world and your ability to control new situations, but casual fans like myself might want to spend their time playing games with a little more draw.

This game is the first time in franchise history that you will be able to take full control of your pet’s in the game. Since this is called “Pets”, it should also be no shock that you will have the ability to create the perfect pet and control all aspect including personality and look etc.  While playing you are able to scroll through the “Live Mode”, “Town Map”, “Buy & Build”, “Landsculpting”, “Mystery Journal”, “Karma Points” and “Challenge”, which typical for your average Sims game.  You can to get to chase, dig, tackle and more. You also have the ability to be friendly or mean to your Sims and the other animals.  I was pretty impressed, I have to admit, with the features that were included and the aspects that were controllable. This game is quite a bit more than just petting or playing fetch with your pets.  You can learn skills like hunting, locating collectibles and also are given career opportunities.  I think that the ability to run around the town and are able to go on adventures throughout.

If you have the Kinect for Xbox 360, you will even get more of an added bonus (I wish I did), you can command your Sims and their pets using voice commands. Could be a cool feature.  Also exclusive for Xbox 360, is the Limited Edition of the game which comes with exclusive content, including 10 rare and exclusive breeds.  These are really cool addition to the game.  You can also activate your online pass and connect to the “The Sims 3: Pets Exchange” where you can download other players content and share your own.  Overall I wouldn’t call this the best game of the year but it is hardly the worst. Lastly I am a little confused about the rating of the game though, which is  “T for Teen: Crude Humor, Sexual Themes, Violence”.  I know that “The Sims” is known for its free ability to pretty much whatever but I would think of this game aiming more towards a younger audience.  I honestly do not see a 40 year old man playing this all night.  If your are thinking about this for a kid, the game play will definitely keep them interested and involved.

Have a Pet or Be a Pet: “The Sims 3 Pets” Is Available on Store Shelves Today

Have a Pet or Be a Pet: The Sims 3 Pets Is Available on Store Shelves Today

Fetch a Copy of the Latest Standalone Release for PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Nintendo 3DS and Expansion Pack on the PC/Mac

REDWOOD CITY, Calif. –(BUSINESS WIRE)– Let the fur fly! Will you have a pet or be a pet? Now you can play both ways as pets are Sims too! Electronic Arts Inc. (NASDAQ:ERTS) today announced The Sims™ 3 Pets is now available in North America on PlayStation® 3 computer entertainment system, Xbox 360® video game and entertainment system, Nintendo 3DS™ and as an Expansion Pack on the PC/ Mac*. Developed by the award-winning team at The Sims Studio, The Sims 3 Pets gives players the ability to play as a pet for the first time in franchise history and see The Sims world through their eyes.

Across all platforms, players will be able to use the robust Create a Pet tool to customize dozens of breeds of cats and dogs. On the PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and PC/Mac, players are able to design their pet from their coats, colors and body shapes, and even down to their snouts and age. Players can also choose from a variety of unique personality traits such as friendly, hyper, clueless and piggy, offering limitless opportunities for fans to create the pets of their dreams or nightmares.

“Pets have always been the top requested theme from our players, and we are delivering a deep, rich experience in The Sims 3 Pets for our fans to enjoy,” said Scott Evans , General Manager of The Sims Studio. “From the moment a player starts the game, they’ll revel in the opportunities to recreate their childhood pet, train their dog to be the most desirable or despicable animal in the neighborhood, share their favorite pet on The Sims 3 Exchange or witness the special lasting relationships their Sims build with their pets. The Sims 3 Pets is about the moments that are unique to the player who lives them.”

The Sims 3 Pets also features gameplay experiences specific to each platform. Exclusive to the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, players will explore all new venues and embark on mysteries in the New England -style town of Sugar Maple Coast . Karma Powers return to the console games and give players the ability to bestow wealth on their Sim or completely uproot their lives. New Karma Powers include: Transmogrify that allows a Sim, cat or dog to turn into a different species; Meteor Strike that drops space rocks from the sky; Feral Possession which turns players’ pets into furry terrors; and more. Exclusive to the Xbox 360, players who are Kinect-enabled can use voice commands to quickly jump between areas of Create a Sim and live mode to change outfits, fulfill the needs of both their Sims and pets and more.

In The Sims 3 Pets PC/Mac Expansion Pack, players are able to create and adopt dogs, cats and, another first for the franchise, horses. Fans are able to take their Sims and their pets on wild adventures while exploring the new world with animal-specific venues and environments such as the dog park, cat jungle or horse stables. Another exclusive to the PC/Mac version, players will be able to search through their world for the elusive unicorn. The magical unicorn can be added to a player’s household after they’ve built up the relationship enough. Unicorns offer fun opportunities to play with life by being able to bless other Sims, teleport around the world and even spark fires. Other minor pets that Sims can own and interact with, but are not fully controllable, include birds, rodents, lizards, turtles and snakes.

Unique to the Nintendo 3DS version of The Sims 3 Pets, players can now create, customize and control a household full of pets without any human Sims. In addition, players will be able to save up to three separate games, each with its own household of three playable Sims. Through gameplay, players can add a fourth member to their household. The Sims 3 Pets on Nintendo 3DS lets fans use Play Coins collected from the Nintendo’s 3DS pedometer feature to spend as Karma Power points. Additionally, players will be able to use Nintendo’s StreetPass function to share their Sims and pets with other Nintendo 3DS users in near vicinity.

The Sims 3 Pets is rated “T” for Teen, with an MSRP of $49.99 on PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and $39.99 on Nintendo 3DS and PC/Mac.

The Sims 3 Plus Pets is also available on PC/Mac and bundles The Sims 3 base game and The Sims 3 Pets Expansion Pack with an MSRP of $49.99 .

For more information, visit http://www.thesims3.com/content/en_US/promo/pets/pets.htm, like the game on Facebook or follow us on Twitter. For more information on The Sims 3, visit http://www.thesims3.com/.

*Requires The Sims 3 for PC/Mac to play.

About The Sims

The Sims™ franchise, the groundbreaking game series that allows players to create and live a virtual, simulated life on a computer, celebrated its 10-year anniversary in 2010 and has sold more than 140 million units since its launch in February 2000 . Now translated into 20 different languages and available in 60 different countries, The Sims series has quickly become a universal gaming and cultural phenomenon. Since its June 2009 launch, The Sims 3 has sold more than 10 million copies worldwide across multiple platforms and was the #1 best-selling PC title for 2009 in North America and Europe . Fan intensity is evidenced through nearly 250 million downloads of player-created content including: The Sims characters, houses, stories and more. The Sims 3 community site, www.thesims3.com, welcomes up to seven million unique visitors monthly, handles more than 240 content downloads every minute and more than 3.5 million uploads to date, including 11 movies each hour. The Sims 3 YouTube Channel is within the top 10 most-viewed sponsored channels of all time, with more than 45 million video views. Visit The Sims 3 official website to see what the players are creating at www.TheSims3.com or the official YouTube Channel for The Sims at http://www.youtube.com/user/TheSims. The Sims 3 is available for PC, Mac, iPhone®, iPod touch®, mobile devices, PlayStation®3 computer entertainment system, Xbox 360® videogame and entertainment system, Nintendo DS™, Wii™ and Nintendo 3DS™. Join The Sims 3 Facebook or Twitter communities at www.facebook.com/thesims3 and www.twitter.com/thesims3. In August, 2011, The Sims Social browser-based game launched on Facebook and within one month garnered an impressive 50M monthly active users and secured the #2 position on Appdata’s chart of top Facebook games. To play The Sims Social, visit www.facebook.com/TheSimsSocial.

About Electronic Arts

Electronic Arts (NASDAQ:ERTS) is a global leader in digital interactive entertainment. The Company’s game franchises are offered as both packaged goods products and online services delivered through Internet-connected consoles, personal computers, mobile phones and tablets. EA has more than 100 million registered players and operates in 75 countries.

In fiscal 2011, EA posted GAAP net revenue of $3.6 billion . Headquartered in Redwood City, California , EA is recognized for critically acclaimed, high-quality blockbuster franchises such as The Sims™, Madden NFL, FIFA Soccer, Need for Speed™, Battlefield, and Mass Effect™. More information about EA is available at http://info.ea.com.

The Sims and Need for Speed are trademarks of Electronic Arts Inc. Mass Effect is a trademark of EA International (Studio and Publishing) Ltd. John Madden, NFL and FIFA are the property of their respective owners and used with permission.