Director: Brad Bird
Writer: Brad Bird
Released: June 2018
Starring: Craig T. Nelson, Holly Hunter, Sarah Vowell, Huck Milner, Samuel L. Jackson, Bob Odenkirk
I recently wrote that I was excited to see this film, but I do wonder if I was perhaps influenced by other people’s enthusiasm because I was never really a massive fan of the first film. I liked it of course, but it ain’t no Toy Story.
Nevertheless, I do love a Pixar animation, and I am very interested in the voice acting scene, so I was more then happy to see Incredibles 2.
This second instalment picks up exactly where the first one left off where the Incredibles are attempting to save the city from a giant mole super-villain. Unfortunately despite their best efforts, they do not catch the culprit and superheroes are condemned and remain illegal.
The movie predominately follows the story of Helen Parr/Elastagirl (Holly Hunter) who is hired by a man named Winston Deavor (Bob Odenkirk) who hopes to make superheroes legal again by showing conflicts from her perspective. Meanwhile, Bob Parr/Mr. Incredible (Craig T. Nelson) has to stay at home with the children – including baby Jack-Jack who is proving difficult.
Just like most other animations that have been released over the last couple of years (including Brave and Maleficent), the feminist movement is a major theme in this film. It features a gender role swap where Bob reluctantly takes over family life at home while Helen enjoys the action-heavy job of being a paid superhero.
Helen thrives at work, which shows how well-rounded she is at being a mum as well as an employee. But Bob is said to be ‘too messy’ to accept the superhero position and struggles to cope at home with the children, painting him as incompetent.
While it was refreshing to have a female hero, I did think this movie swung a little too far away from ‘gender equality’ into the sticky territory of ‘man-hating’, as it showed the male characters failing (including but not limited to Bob) and female characters excelling (including but not limited to Helen). In addition to this, the script was peppered with plenty of derogatory language from female characters toward male characters. (I will include the exact quotes I’m referring to once they become available online.)
I’m going to say it – if Bob spoke Helen’s script, there would be protests in the street. I believe this highlights that this isn’t a movie promoting gender equality, it’s displaying bitterness toward men by putting them down. Feminism isn’t about revenge, please.
Eesh… Enough of the heavy.
Thankfully, everyone’s favourite characters are in the sequel including Edna Mode (Brad Bird) and Lucious Best/Frozone (Samuel L. Jackson). They are sure to make you giggle!
The supervillain in this film, Screenslaver, has some pretty philosophical lines if you listen out for them. The character talks about staring at a screen all day instead of actually getting up and doing something, quite insightful considering the audience.
Screenslaver: Superheroes are part of a brainless desire to replace true experience with simulation. You don’t talk, you watch talk shows. You don’t play games, you watch game shows. Travel, relationships, risk; every meaningful experience must be packaged and delivered to you to watch at a distance so that you can remain ever-sheltered, ever-passive, ever-ravenous consumers who can’t free themselves to rise from their couches to break a sweat, never anticipate new life. You want superheroes to protect you, and make yourselves ever more powerless in the process.
Overall, you can look as much or as little as you want into this film. It’s certainly fun, but not hilarious. It’s a solid family film and easy to watch, but nothing ‘incredible’.
Jodie’s rating: 6/10