The Corner

Film & TV

‘Pets 2’: Where the Homophobic Meets the Homicidal

I enjoyed Kyle’s observations on white minstrel performer Bruce Springsteen and “Born in the U.S.A.” It is a fact: Nobody listens to the lyrics.

I was reminded of that last night when I overheard a commercial for The Secret Life of Pets 2, which was lifted up by a peculiar musical choice: DMX’s “Where the Hood At?” It is a great, anthemic song . . . about murdering homosexuals. The first verse is about that, anyway. The last verse is, strangely enough, a homosexual rape fantasy. DMX is sending some mixed signals.

I don’t object to the use of the song, and I assume that if it is in the film it has been artfully deployed, as in the commercial. I think attempting to use moralistic criteria to evaluate art — even pop songs — is an error.

But I do wonder how such Hollywood scolds as Patton Oswalt — a wonderful actor but kind of insufferable — justify that sort of thing to themselves. What sort of thing? Literally using messages of hate and violence to make money.

I might even begin to suspect that these high-minded Hollywood activist types are not entirely serious!

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