With an ensemble cast of fearless house pets, The Secret Life of Pets 2 returns with more zany misadventures and a surprisingly fun continuation balancing hairier aspects with lots of laughs. The CG-animated follow-up hides its secrets on Blu-ray with a reference-quality video presentation, a satisfying Dolby Atmos soundtrack and a healthy collection of supplements. The overall package is Highly Recommended for the whole family.
You can read our full thoughts on The Secret Life of Pets 2 in our review of the 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray HERE.
Vital Disc Stats: The Blu-ray
Universal Studios Home Entertainment brings The Secret Life of Pets 2 to Blu-ray as a two-disc combo pack with a Digital Copy code. The Region Free BD50 disc sits comfortably opposite a DVD-9, and both come inside a blue, eco-elite case with a slipcover. After several skippable trailers, viewers are taken to a static menu with music.
The secret is out on Blu-ray with a remarkably gorgeous, reference-quality 1080p/AVC MPEG-4 encode, delivering a feast for the eyes from start to finish. The freshly-minted transfer is continuously razor-sharp, from every piece of furniture and the tiniest trinket decorating the apartment to each window, brick and cloud in the distance. Every blade of grass and leaf is striking, the fine lines in the clothing of the humans or in the collars of the pets are distinct, and the individual hairs of every animal are highly detailed and move independently of each other. Viewers can even plainly make out the textural bumps of the dog's noses, the crusty rust spots of Rooster's vintage-truck dog home and the smallest blemish in Max's bee toy.
Presented in its original 1.85:1 aspect ratio, the HD presentation also flaunts about with spot-on contrast and brightness balance, showering the action with superbly crisp, pitch-perfect whites and rich, silky blacks. Each hair on Gidget, Snowball and Hu remains discrete and separate, and we clearly see the elaborate features in Sergei's outfit while also maintaining outstanding visibility in the darkest, creepiest corners of the cat lady's apartment. The highlights in light fixtures, the sunshine glistening in the water and daylight exteriors, in general, are equally impressive and outstanding. Not surprisingly, the video boasts a stunning kaleidoscope of colors, from the animated, flamboyant primaries to a sumptuous array of richly-saturated secondary hues, keeping the scarier, more alarming moments with Sergei upbeat and light-hearted. (Video Rating: 100/100)
The pets set out on a brave rescue mission equipped with a fantastically fun and highly satisfying Dolby Atmos soundtrack, filling the room with the hustle and bustle of the city while the scenes set on the family farm are often layered with the subtle noise of the local wildlife.
The design displays excellent directionality and placement, as various atmospherics travel through the surrounds and into the ceiling speakers with flawless panning. It's not always consistent or as effectively immersive as some of the best tracks currently available, but for a children's animated feature, the effects employ the overheads from time to time, generating an amusing soundfield that terrifically complements the visuals. The best moments are the scenes with Gidget inside the cat lady's apartment and when the gang battles Sergei and his wolves aboard the train.
Much like its predecessor, the majority of the action is better and more effectively spread across the screen, as background activity smoothly moves between the front and height channels, creating an engaging half-dome soundstage. Imaging continuously feels spacious and expansive, exhibiting outstanding clarity and detailing in the mid-range. The low-end provides a welcomed punch and presence, serving the action well without being too demanding. With well-prioritized and precise vocals throughout, the object-based mix makes for a great listen. (Dolby Atmos Audio Rating: 88/100)
The Secret Life of Pets 2 returns with more zany misadventures of Manhattan dogs, cats and bunnies as they discover their inner hero on a farm, in a cat lady's apartment and against a creepy circus owner. With an ensemble of talented actors, the sequel is a surprisingly fun continuation that nicely balances some of the graver, more somber aspects with lots of laughs. The CG-animated follow-up hides its secrets on Blu-ray with a stunning, reference-quality HD video presentation and the same satisfying Dolby Atmos soundtrack. With a healthy collection of supplements to entertain the whole family, the overall package is highly recommended.