Kyle J. Steenblik

Incredibles 2 is Smart, Funny, and Fantastic [Review]

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Incredibles 2
Directed by: Brad Bird
Written by: Brad Bird
Starring: Holly Hunter, Craig T. Nelson, Sarah Vowell, Huck Milner, Samuel L. Jackson, Catherine Keener, Bob Odenkirk, Brad Bird, Eli Fucile
Production company: Walt Disney Pictures, Pixar Animation Studios
Release date June 15, 2018
Running time 118 minutes
Rated PG for action sequences and some brief mild language
5 stars out of 5
Helen Parr- Elastigirl (Holly Hunter) is called on to lead a campaign to bring Supers back, while Bob Parr – Mr. Incredible (Craig T. Nelson) navigates the day-to-day heroics of “normal” life at home with Violet (Sarah Vowell), Dash (Huck Milner) and baby Jack-Jack — whose superpowers are about to be discovered.

Their mission is derailed, however, when a new villain called Screenslaver emerges with a brilliant and dangerous plot that threatens everything. But the Parrs don’t shy away from a challenge, especially with Frozone (Samuel L. Jackson) by their side. That’s what makes this family so Incredible.

Incredibles 2 managed to push past its predecessor with a more complex story and fuller character development.  Using the first Incredibles film as a starting block to begin a new narrative at sprint was an incredibly smart move by writer and director Brad Bird.  The sophistication of the story and character development is extraordinarily well balanced with the playful humor audiences would expect from a Pixar film.   Each character is presented with unique challenges and given moments to shine.

For example, Violet adolescent story arc revolves around her failed date and courtship of Tony, the boy she has had a crush on in the first film.  This journey shows her struggling to come to terms with the fact that super-hero life is an unexpected complication to both the maturation of adolescence and interpersonal and family relationships.

While the animation of Pixar has become noticeably richer in depth and texture with finer detail the animation used for Incredibles 2 matches the style and animation of the original very precisely, while also including that richer depth and texture in detail.  Like the first film, the animation was dynamic and engaging with enough visual eye candy to keep audiences of any age entertained.

Arguably the most successful element in Incredibles 2 is the addition of a truly dangerous and intimidating villain.  Screenslaver is ruthless and creates the necessary threat to push superheroes to the breaking point.  This is what pushes the story over the edge to create an honestly incredible film.

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