The Secret Life of Pets 2 – new films coming to Portsmouth cinemas

The Secret Life Of Pets 2. Pictured: Chloe (voiced by Lake Bell) and her owner (Laraine Newman). Picture: PA
The Secret Life Of Pets 2. Pictured: Chloe (voiced by Lake Bell) and her owner (Laraine Newman). Picture: PA
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Grab the popcorn for these new releases. 

The Secret Life of Pets 2

Chris Renaud and Jonathan de Val co-direct a tail-wagging sequel to the award-winning 2016 computer-animated comedy, which imagined what our four-legged, feathered and finned friends get up to when our backs are turned.

In the follow-up, mischievous terrier Max (voiced by Patton Oswalt) and lolloping mongrel Duke (Eric Stonestreet) are fascinated when their owner Katie (Ellie Kemper) falls in love with Chuck (Pete Holmes).

The couple get married and raise a baby boy called Liam, who Max vows to protect at all costs.

The family heads out of Manhattan to visit Chuck's uncle on a farm, where Max faces canine-intolerant cows, lackadaisical sheep and vicious foxes.

Thankfully, veteran farm dog Rooster (Harrison Ford) helps Max to overcome his insecurities and unleash the hero within.

Back in the city, pampered Eskimo dog Gidget (Jenny Slate), agrees to take care of Max's favourite toy, Busy Bee, in his absence.

The squeaky rubber plaything tumbles out of a window and into the downstairs apartment of a crazy cat lady.

In order to retrieve Busy Bee, Gidget turns to sardonic house cat Chloe (Lake Bell) for valuable tips on how to imitate the behaviour of a puss.

Elsewhere, maniacal white rabbit Snowball (Kevin Hart) adopts his superhero persona to help a fearless Shih Tzu called Daisy (Tiffany Haddish) rescue a caged white tiger from a cruel circus master.

Released May 24. 

Rocketman (15)

Executively produced by Elton John and directed by Dexter Fletcher, Rocketman is an occasionally thrilling but largely conventional biopic that won't go breaking the hearts of the singer-songwriter's fans.

Scriptwriter Lee Hall, who pirouetted to the Academy Awards with Billy Elliot, attempts to serve John's competing personalities: moments of quiet introspection for the self-doubting introvert who is emotionally bruised by his childhood, and splashes of eye-popping spectacle for the flamboyant peacock who escapes reality with snorts of nose candy.

The polite amalgamation of Bohemian Rhapsody and The Greatest Showman is easy to admire but harder to unabashedly adore, and only truly achieves lift-off in the spectacularly choreographed musical set-pieces that energise a briskly sketched opening hour.

Taron Egerton is endearing as Elton John and goes one better than Oscar winner Rami Malek by singing live rather than lip-syncing original vocals.

The script doesn't sidestep John's homosexuality nor does it convincingly unravel the psychological power struggle between the singer and his controlling personal manager John Reid (Richard Madden), who was a similarly toxic presence in Bohemian Rhapsody.

Out now. 

Aladdin (PG)

Guy Ritchie directs a colourful live-action remake of Disney's 1992 Oscar-winning animated adventure, which was energised by Robin Williams as the voice of the irrepressible, shape-shifting Genie.

The toe-tapping soundtrack updates the songbook by composer Alan Menken and songwriters Howard Ashman and Tim Rice including Friend Like Me and A Whole New World.

Street urchin Aladdin (Mena Massoud) and his pet monkey Abu run amok on the streets of Agrabah, stealing just enough to survive.

He falls hopelessly in love with beautiful Princess Jasmine (Naomi Scott), whose resents the rules imposed upon her by her father, The Sultan (Navid Negahban).

She yearns to break free and stand on her own two feet, and a fledgling romance with Aladdin gives her the confidence to pursue her dreams of becoming the next Sultan.

Her father's chief adviser, Jafar (Marwen Kenzari), is plotting to seize power with his macaw Iago (voiced by Alan Tudyk).

He hopes to rule Agrabah by claiming a magic lamp, which lies deep within an enchanted cave.

Jafar dispatches Aladdin into the bowels of the earth to steal the golden trinket but the street urchin rubs the lamp and releases a live-wire blue genie (Will Smith), who promises to grant three magical wishes.

Out now.