Friday, June 29, 2018

Movie review of “Incredibles 2”. Reviewed by Emily Maier

Run time: 118 mins

After fourteen long years, everyone’s favorite family of superheroes is back in “Incredibles 2.”
Growing up, “The Incredibles” was always one of my favorite movies, so I was (incredibly) excited to see what Pixar did with this second installment.

“Incredibles 2” picks up right where “The Incredibles” left off, with the Parr family teaming up to fight a mole-like villain known as The Underminer. Unfortunately, things don’t go exactly as planned and, in a world where superheroes are already deemed illegal, this only adds fuel to the fire.

In an effort to put people’s faith back in superheroes, the owners of a corporation known as DEVTECH enlist Elastigirl to star in their campaign to repeal the anti-superhero law. As Helen takes off to fight crime, Bob/Mr. Incredible is left to navigate his new role as a stay-at-home dad.

Overall, I was really happy with the turn this movie took in terms of the focus on characters. Though the first movie mainly followed Mr. Incredible, he took a backseat in order for “Incredibles 2” to explore Elastigirl’s character. The movie’s reversal of stereotypical gender roles was very refreshing; with Helen becoming the family breadwinner and Bob taking on the full-time task of raising three kids. It was also exciting to see more of Frozone, Violet, Dash, and Jack-Jack. Though I had been hoping for more scenes with Edna Mode, the screen time she does get is perhaps the funniest portion of the film, so it’s hard to complain.

I was also surprised at the rather realistic portrayal of teenagers. Violet and Dash are both susceptible to moody outbursts and instances of rebellion, but they developed as they learned lessons throughout the film. Oftentimes, movies will use children to take whatever steps are necessary to further the plot, causing unpredictable characterization. But “Incredibles 2” let kids be kids, and their actions felt natural instead of some forced plot device.

The animation is wonderful. This is ultimately expected of a Pixar movie, but I still found myself in awe of the natural fluidity of each character. Looking back at the first movie, there is a pronounced difference in the level of animation – after all, things have come a long way in fourteen years!
One of my only complaints is that the plot was often very predictable. Though “Incredibles 2” attempted a couple “twists,” even these seemed rather obvious. Still, I didn’t feel this took too much away from my overall enjoyment of the movie.

The action scenes were intense and the slower, family-centric scenes were heartfelt, so there was never a time in which I felt bored.

Nostalgia aside, “Incredibles 2” holds up perfectly fine on its own. Many sequels to popular animated films often have trouble finding their own voice, but I didn’t find this to be the case with “Incredibles 2.” The film expands upon already beloved characters and delves deeper into themes brought up in the first movie. Though I didn’t find “Incredibles 2” quite as compelling as the original, it was still a solid addition to the story.

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