Goodbye, Cute. Hello, Cool.
Nov 29, 2004 (Updated Nov 29, 2004)
Review by jswikler
Rated a Very Helpful Review
Pros:Enjoyable for the whole family. Brings the quality one expects from a Pixar film.
Cons:Does not bring the originality one expects from a Pixar film.
The Bottom Line: If you have enjoyed Pixar's previous efforts, check this out.
Plot Details: This opinion reveals minor details about the movie's plot.
Recommend this product?
Ever since the success of the first installment in the Toy Story series, Pixar has been synonymous with high-quality, animated films. The Incredibles lives up to the standard set by its predecessors, but does not exceed them. This is not a bad thing considering the great success of Pixar's prior films.
Allow me to set the stage. The Incredibles is a film centered on a family of superheroes. The father is Mr. Incredible, voiced by Craig T. Nelson (from the television series Coach). His superpowers are similar to Colossus of the X-Men in that he has superhuman strength. His wife is Elastigirl, voiced by Holly Hunter (a much more recognizable voice). Her ability to stretch her body exceeds the famous skills of Stretch Armstrong. They have three children: Violet, Dash and Jack Jack. Violet, voiced by Sarah Vowell, has the power of invisibility and the ability to create force fields. While Dash, voiced by Spencer Fox, has powers much like The Flash in that he is "super" speedy. Jack Jack is the baby of the family. Other characters worthy of mention are: Frozone (Samuel L. Jackson), a family friend with the power to freeze objects (sound like Silver Surfer?); E (Brad Bird), a super-hero seamstress; and the villain (Jason Lee).
The story takes place in a world where superheroes saving the day is the norm, and there is an abundant number of superheroes willing to do the job. But when certain people are getting saved against their will, the inevitable happens: frivolous lawsuits. In order to save the heroes from surmounting compensatory damages, they are all placed into a protection program where they can lead normal lives. Inevitably, something happens which requires these heroes to come out of hiding to save the world yet again.
The film is very entertaining. It plays out very much like a classic Bond film, only with superheroes replacing 007. The villain, in my opinion, was the most ingenious part of the movie. I was very pleased with how that plot point worked out. Lee was a great choice for the voice-work for such a character as well. The enthusiasm that is intrinsic in his tone was perfect for a character that was such a hero-worshiper, as well as an egomaniac.
Hunter was another excellent choice. In this go-around, she has much better maternal instincts than she did in Thirteen, another film where she played a mother. But I digress.
I still don't get how Bird voice E, a woman (kind of like Frank Oz voicing Miss Piggy). Maybe I'll have to check out the movie again to realize how that worked out. The other voice talents got the job done without too much finesse.
Overall, the movie was great. It was filled with many funny moments, and a lot of excitement. Truly, it was more entertaining, and family friendly, than any recent action film.
The down-side is that it really didn't bring a whole lot new to the table. The reason I say that is because of Pixar's track record. They brought toys to life in Toy Story (yes... like the Winnie the Pooh, but different). They showed you the secret world of insects in A Bug's Life. They showed you the industry of monster's in your closet in Monster's Inc.. They dazzled you with an undersea tale in Finding Nemo (very different than A Little Mermaid). Now, they are showing an action-adventure movie with superheroes?
Don't get me wrong, I really enjoyed the film. I loved it, in fact. I'm just trying to point out that it lacks the innovative quality that Pixar has so proudly displayed in the past.
But I try not to give a movie a worse review because of preconceived notions concerning what a movie should or should not be. Therefore, I do recommend The Incredibles strongly because it is a highly entertaining romp.
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