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The Secret Life of Pets 2 (2019) <><><>

An adequate followup to a good animated movie. The original Secret Life of Pets came out four months after Zootopia and couldn't quite measure up. The sequel stands alone with no shadow this time. Max has been re-voiced by Patton Oswalt, replacing Louis CK. Tiffany Haddish was added to the cast as Daisy and stars opposite Kevin Hart, Snowball. Harrison Ford bring brovado as Rooster, the mentor of Max. The voice actors are all great. Harrison Ford is a wonderful addition to the cast and I want more Haddish/Hart after this and Night School. I hope they get a movie that elevates their talents instead of hindering them.

The movie is a loose collection of various vignettes, much like a Family Guy episode, and quickly separates itself into three stories. Max and Duke head upstate to a farm; I am still unsure if that is a nod to childhood pets heading to the farm. Snowball and Daisy pair up to comedic excellence; they go to save a baby tiger from the circus. Lastly Jenny Slate and Lake Bell go on an adventure together to turn a dog into a cat. All three stories are disconnected until the final chase scene. The movie bounces quickly between story lines whenever one story gets too boring; it feels very scattershot. These stories would have been better served in television episodes dedicated to each story.

Each scene taken on its own is pretty good with a few standouts; a dog learning to become a cat, a wolf vs. dog fight, and a train heist come to mind. Individually, many of the scenes are funny and had me laughing, but when summed together the movie doesn't ad up.

The through stories really let the movie down as it feels more like herding cats than a team of sled dogs headed in one direction. Pet owners will find scenes they love, but may be indifferent with the movie on the whole.

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