Fourteen years ago, Disney Pixar released the hit film The Incredibles, about a family with superpowers who are forced to live mundane lives. Superheroes are forbidden because of the collateral damage their missions cause. The film was a huge hit and asserted Pixar’s reign as a leading studio in animation. Most studios would come out with a sequel as soon as possible, to try and cash in on the success of its predecessor. Yet still it took them fourteen years before The Incredibles 2 came to fruition. The development time of the film was rather short, three years, compared to Coco’s six year production. But the question is, does it live up to the original or is it another unnecessary sequel?
What is it about?
RottenTomatoes says the following:
Everyone’s favorite family of superheroes is back in “Incredibles 2”–but this time Helen (voice of Holly Hunter) is in the spotlight, leaving Bob (voice of Craig T. Nelson) at home with Violet (voice of Sarah Vowell) and Dash (voice of Huck Milner) to navigate the day-to-day heroics of “normal” life. It’s a tough transistion for everyone, made tougher by the fact that the family is still unaware of baby Jack-Jack’s emerging superpowers. When a new villain hatches a brilliant and dangerous plot, the family and Frozone (voice of Samuel L. Jackson) must find a way to work together again–which is easier said than done, even when they’re all Incredible.
The film takes place right after the events of The Incredibles. While it is not necessary to watch the original before seeing this one, it is advisable.
Attention to detail
Regardless of whether or not this is a necessary sequel, the first thing that you notice when you watch this film is the attention to detail. It was evident in the trailer already. Everything, from the hair to the fabric of the clothes in close-up shots look fantastic. While the style of the film remains cartoonish, it still feels real. It’s clear that throughout the years, Pixar has evolved their style. They’ve always been great, but with new technology, they keep getting better. It’s no surprise that they are still one of the strongest players in the animation game.
One thing that is clear from the very beginning is that a lot of thought went in to the story. The plot twist is hardly surprising. I identified the bad guy half-way through the film already. However, because this sequel continues right where the first one ended, it provides closure. The story is complete now, even though the ending makes a third film a possibility.
Incredibles 2 is a fast-paced film with enough gags and gimmicks to entertain both kids and their parents. It is not merely a superhero film. It also deals with the hardship of having children and raising them. The film deals with the obsession we have for our screens nowadays. We’re warned to live our lives and experience things instead of having others experience them for us. While the bad guy was predictable, this was a nice touch.
Jack Jack the baby is the character that steals the show. Especially when paired with fashion designer Edna. Honestly, I never thought I would consider a baby to be the best character of any film. But here we are. I also enjoyed all the side-plots and never felt like they were weighing the film down.
While The Incredibles 2 never tops the original (but when does a sequel truly do that?), it is still a recommended watch. Especially if you are a Pixar fan or just enjoyed the original. It’s fast pace and humor ensures the film never truly gets boring, while it does convey an important message. A recommended watch.