After the first Incredibles movie came out in 2004, fans were left wanting more from the Parr, or Incredibles, family but were never quite sure if the time would ever come. Waiting fourteen long years, fans finally got the sequel to The Incredibles that they’ve been waiting for.
The Return: The Incredibles 2
Brad Bird’s screenplay for The Incredibles 2 is undeniably a good film for all ages. Combining elements of an old-fashioned sitcom with many action scenes, The Incredibles lived up to its high expectations. Beginning right where the first film left off, the returning characters are certainly as lovable as we all remembered. Catching up with Bob “Mr. Incredible” and Helen “Elastigirl” Parr (played by Craig T. Nelson and Holly Hunter); their children Violet (played by Sarah Vowell), Dash (played by Huck Milner), and baby Jack-Jack; and their old pal Lucius “Frozone” Best (played by Samuel L. Jackson).
The Life of The Incredibles Continues
The Incredibles are in a mad rush to save the city from the Underminer, the villain that was introduced at the end of the previous film and the family has yet to find out about baby Jack-Jack’s superpowers. The film continues to purposely employ a midcentury modernist aesthetic (it’s more or less set sometime around 1962), with design (and some story) elements that seem to be borrowed from early James Bond and Mad Men. There’s also some very funny, slapstick, hilarious new characters, and a handful of sequences that match any great Pixar film such as Toy Story 3, Up and more. Of course, the big difference between The Incredibles and Incredibles 2 is that in the intervening 14 years, the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe has successfully colonized multiplexes and the summer blockbuster season.
The Plot *Spoilers Ahead*
Needing to rescue the city of Metroville from its newest threat, the Underminer (played byJohn Ratzenberger). But instead of being grateful for the supers’ help, the Metroville authorities resent the Incredibles and their good friend Frozone for being destructive. Telecommunications CEO Winston Deaver (played by Bob Odenkirk) and his tech-genius sister, Evelyn (played by Catherine Keener), offer the supers a chance to make themselves relevant and indispensable again.
Winston convinces Elastigirl to wear a new suit outfitted with a body camera so everyone can see how much she does for the community. As Elastigirl tracks down Screenslaver, a mysterious new villain who hypnotizes people, Mr. Incredible stays home to take care of the kids: Moody Violet, who’s dealing with her first broken heart; spirited Dash, who needs help with homework; and little Jack-Jack, who suddenly comes into some super-potent powers.
Why It Was Worth The Wait
This is the rare sequel that lives up to everyone’s massive expectations. The film also delivers as much of the joy and adventure as the original. Some critics and fans initially questioned the need for a sequel to The Incredibles, especially one that took more than a decade to arrive. But director Brad Bird has struck magic again with his exploration of contemporary family life via superheroes. Incredibles 2 puts Elastigirl in the spotlight, showing the many challenges involved with balancing work and home, even when you have superpowers.
The way Elastigirl worries and feels guilty about missing Jack-Jack’s first powers emerging is as relatable and believable as Mr. Incredible’s frustration while trying to figure out modern-curriculum math when he sits down to help Dash with homework.
Bird Breaks Boundaries
Bird certainly touches on breaking gender stereotypes in this film as well. Elastigirl is the one taking care of business while Mr. Incredible stays home to help the kids. Michael Giacchino, a notorious Pixar composer’s, jazzy score and the movie’s vibrant, mid-century modern designs are quite retro. However, Incredibles 2 is also simultaneously current with its depiction of technical advances portrayed in the film.
It’s the characters that viewers wanted to see more of. Including crowd favorite fashion designer and most popular meme Edna Mode. Edna Mode steals scenes with her hilarious and sassy personality yet again. Bird is an observer of what it means to be part of a close and happy family. This sequel makes audiences laugh, think, and appreciate their parents and siblings. Evidently, fourteen years was worth the wait. Hopefully, we just won’t have to wait for fourteen more for another one.