film & game reviews, the retro way.
Craig T. Nelson
Samuel L. Jackson
14 years after the release of The Incredibles, Pixar released its long-awaited sequel, picking up the story right where it left off with the superhero family tackling supervillain The Underminer in the middle of the city before the start of a brand new adventure.
Pixar's track record in terms of sequels may have been a little hit-and-miss, though the misses were underwhelming at worst, but The Incredibles always did feel like the perfect franchise to expand upon. Indeed, having characters with numerous super-powers opens up endless possibilities in terms of villains and storylines. Speaking of which, the plot this time around involves Helen/Elastigirl (Holly Hunter) being hired by an entrepreneur who wants to change people's perceptions of superheroes for the better.
Elastigirl becomes the new face of this pro-superhero movement as she goes around saving lives with a video camera capturing her every move. Along the way, she encounters a mysterious foe who calls himself The Screenslaver and she starts to investigate him. Meanwhile, Bob/Mr. Incredible (Craig T. Nelson) begrudgingly stays home to look after the kids, which proves to be more difficult than anticipated, especially when he discovers baby Jack-Jack's new, unpredictable powers.
Like all good sequels, The Incredibles 2 keeps what worked so well in the original film and builds on that. The normal family/cool superhero team dynamic is just as charming and fun as it was back in 2004 and the characters are all just as likeable. We get to see more of what Elastigirl can do solo, we see the family work as a team to defeat a significant threat plus deal with new issues back home, Edna Mode (Brad Bird) once again pops up for a scene-stealing cameo and the action sequences are, once again, exciting and ambitious.
The whole thing is also reliably very funny: one scene sees Jack-Jack battle a raccoon in the garden using all his crazy powers and it is a treat worthy of classic Tex Avery cartoons. Samuel L. Jackson is given a lot more screen-time as Frozone, a new team of heroes is introduced and Bob Odenkirk is very good as Saul Goodman-esque entrepreneur Winston Deavor. Unfortunately, the film stumbles a little when it comes to its villain and their evil plan, which doesn't seem to make a whole lot of sense when you know that superheroes were not celebrated to begin with. That said, there are some cool (if strobe light heavy) scenes involving said villain.
Though it could have done with a stronger, less predictable twist, The Incredibles 2 ticks all the right boxes otherwise. This is an extremely entertaining Pixar film with stunning animation, colourful visuals, a lot of heart and some epic action scenes worthy of the original film.