Brooke Nicholson | Arts & Entertainment Editor
Back in 2004, an animated film about a family with superpowers who called themselves ‘The Incredibles’ hit theaters all across the country. Pixar Animated Studios never anticipated how big of a hit the two-hour long children’s film would be when it was released. Now, 14 years later, we get to see what the Parr’s have been up to since the major cliffhanger at the end of the first film left everybody on the edge of their seats.
Having Bob Parr, the father of the three kids and husband of Helen Parr, be the sole focus of the first film, Pixar switches it up with Helen moving the plot forward this time. A telecommunications company, DevTech, approaches her, and gives her the opportunity to make superheroes legal again, after all superheroes were driven underground by a nationwide law in the first film.
After accepting the offer and traveling with DevTech’s brain children of the company, Helen is able to defeat crime and publicize the heroic acts to help change the minds of politicians. Bob Parr, on the other hand, has the main role of figuring out how to become another kind of super hero – being a great dad to his three kids while Helen is away.
While Bob figures out how to keep his kids with super abilities safe for a long period of time, Bob realizes that Jack-Jack, the youngest of the family, has begun developing his own powers. This ensues a hilarious struggle between Bob and the kids when things begin to spiral out of control, with Bob slowly degrading away from lack of sleep and energy trying to keep the family from falling apart.
Fourteen years is a long time to wait for a film, but many people knew that it was going to be worth it. There’s even a short introduction before the Pixar short film, “Bao”, with the voice actors from the movie stating that they “know it’s been a while, but we promise it was worth the wait,” and they were right.
The main thing that separates this movie from the first one is how the topic of family is dealt with, the swapping of gender roles and how just being a good parent juggling a job and kids is superhero enough. With Helen being gone and having done most of the work around the house while Bob would go to work, it was absolutely hilarious to watch as Bob has to relearn everything Helen does and it doesn’t go smoothly.
Pixar knows the struggles of being a parent, and they made sure it wasn’t all sunshine and rainbows. Nothing was sugar coated for the sake of wanting this ‘super’ family to look like it was super all the time. They wanted to show the real side of growing up, dealing with kids and raising a family.
We got to know Helen Parr very well in this movie, and Pixar made sure that her character developed into a badass, femme fatale that actually loved fighting crime all along, realizing that she had missed it a lot more than she thought she did after superheroes were deemed illegal.
The other character with a lot of important character development that came from the movie was actually the baby, Jack-Jack, with a huge portion of the movie dedicated to him figuring out what his powers were and how they worked.
Pixar wanted to make families laugh at their own family and have them watch on the big screen how growing up and trying to figure out the world can be a hilarious ride. There wasn’t 15 minutes that went by without the audience laughing hysterically at the struggles of talking to a crush, finding out how to control superpowers at a young age or the way a dad cannot help his son with math homework because the school wants the children to do it a new way.
This movie has a little bit in it for everyone, and even though it is considered a children’s film, it had something that any age group could relate to. There were more preteens and young adults in the theater seats than younger children, wanting to relive a bit of their childhood through a movie they loved as a kid, while older adults enjoyed the hilarity of being a parent and relating to the struggles of nailing the balancing act.