18 June 2016 | gricey_sandgrounder
The studios best film since Despicable Me
With the animation genre in such a golden age, more and more studios are starting to drop their name into the mix.
The latest one is Illumination Entertainment. After starting really well with Despicable Me, it has seemed to have made OK flicks such as Hop, The Lorax, Despicable Me 2 and Minions.
Now we have what many people are hyping as their best feature since Despicable Me, in the form The Secret Life Of Pets. The marketing has been pretty good and trailer suggests a good time at the cinema.
For me, I was pretty satisfied with what I saw. The first third of the film was its strongest part. It was introducing the characters well, there were some solid laughs and they were setting up the story nicely. However the longer the film went on, the slightly sillier it was getting. It was starting to lose its feet, and the gags were getting a bit too much. Thankfully, it was not that bad at all on the whole. It was still moving a long nicely, the characters were being solidly developed and the story rounded off pretty well. I think it might have peaked too soon and everything else felt inferior.
The voice performances were good. Jenny Slate continues to do well in her voice work and I felt she gave the strongest performance. Kevin Hart played his character really well, and had some nice laughs. Louis C.K. was well cast as the lead and gave us a character you could root for. The rest did their job well. They were not good enough to be memorable, but not bad enough to be negatively criticised.
On the technical side, the animation looked really nice and fitted the tone well. The action was entertaining if not a bit over the top at times. The character designs were strong, and I can see them being sold well as merchandise.
Overall, some of it felt disappointing. But on the whole I had a fairly good time watching this. It is definitely the studio's best film since Despicable Me. But with so many other animation studios delivering much stronger films at the moment, this could be forgotten sooner than you think. This might not do as well in the box office as originally expected. Especially a new Pixar film on the way.
There is also a short before the main film, and it features the studios most famous characters. It was o.k. But nowhere near as strong as Pixar's shorts.