Hi everyone! Today I’m doing a little review on the new Incredibles 2 film by Disney-Pixar and the short film before it, Bao! I am going to stick to a spoiler free section first and then spoilers at the end. I’ll warn you before it comes up!
In this section I’m only talking about the stuff released prior to the film such as how it relates to the first film or what is in the trailers. I’ll also do minor spoilers but ultimately you’ll still need to see the film!
So I did see the film last week with two friends, and I hadn’t expected it to start where it did. In the film, no time has passed since the first film. I was surprised as I thought at least some time would pass. Obviously not a ton, as Jack-Jack is still a baby in the trailers but it’s literally the same baddie that pops up at the beginning. I didn’t think it was a bad thing at all, just caught off guard.
Essentially in this film Supers are preparing to come out of hiding and working to adjust their lives after spending so long trying to hide their powers. Helen, as Elastigirl, is working as a Super again while Bob is trying to be a stay-at-home dad to Violet, Dash, and Jack-Jack.
Things get complicated when Jack-Jack turns out to be a little too much to handle when his powers are discovered but Bob is determined to handle everything to allow Helen to succeed as a solo Super. On top of that Violet has boy trouble and Dash has homework trouble to deal with as well. Helen is focused on her mission but of course still trying to figure out how to balance her new career with her family.
And of course, the family aspect of the film is incredibly sweet! The family grew close at the end of the film with their joint takedown of the film’s baddie. This time around the family continues to grow their relationships with each other as well as clash as families tend to do.
Overall the film didn’t lose the magic of the first film. I thought it was a great continuation and stayed true to the characters. Oftentimes I feel that sequels “reset” the character development that they had in the first film but it didn’t feel that way at all this time around. Each character felt real and although I hadn’t seen the first film in a few years (at least) I easily was able to slip back into the world of the Supers and cheer them on just as I did fourteen years ago.
I don’t want to say much more on that in case of spoilers so I’ll leave it at that and tell you to go see the film ASAP! In the meantime, let me chat about Bao, the animated short before the film.
Bao was such a sweet short! Honestly, I love the Pixar shorts and Bao didn’t disappoint. I can’t do the story justice as it’s perfect as it is but I did want to mention how cute it was! The story follows an Asian-Canadian mother who is dealing with an empty nest and estranged son. I thought the story was so sweet and incredibly moving. I wanted to immediately run home (well drive, the theatre was quite far from my home) and give my mother a giant hug. I’ve heard a few things that people didn’t think it was “relatable” so they were “confused” but I am calling absolutely bullshit on that. It very clearly was unless you have no empathy. Even though I have no intention of ever having kids I could see that point of view because I have a mother and can put myself into other people’s shoes so I don’t understand how it was “confusing” in anyway way. I find it highly unlikely that anyone hasn’t been able to at least talk to a mother (not even their own necessarily) and seen how much a mom’s life can revolve around their kids so that annoyed me. On a better note, this was the first Pixar short to be directed by a woman, and while part of me is also slightly miffed that it took this long it always makes me happy to hear that women are finally included in something, such as directing an amazing Pixar short.
Okay so now onto some spoilers! If you don’t want to see spoilers skip the part after the movie poster that I took from the Incredibles 2 Twitter (yup, not mine, borrowed from Twitter for review purposes!) and when you see the post a SECOND time then you know you’re clear to read the end of the post.
As I was saying, the characters stay true to themselves and continue their development. Both Helen and Bob want Supers to be able to live in the open but while Bob is all for the idea, Helen is more cautious and reasonable. I loved that they did have Bob be a bit jealous for Helen because it did feel so realistic. After all, he’s the one that has had the most trouble keeping his powers a secret all this time and now he’s the one that is left behind while the spouse is out saving the world. While annoying that it of course had to be about him at some points, such as when he can’t wrap his mind that Winston wants to send Helen out for the first few missions, it’s very realistic for the character.
Helen was perfect as well. She calls often to speak to Bob about the kids and is ready to go home at a moment’s notice, which makes sense as she was a stay-at-home mom for so long that it is going to take an adjustment period. However, her confidence shines through when the missions get going and her intelligence and quick wit got their chance in the spotlight. Although she didn’t suspect Evelyn she did know that something wasn’t right when she “caught” the Screenslaver and trusted her gut.
The kids felt pretty spot on as well. It bothered me that Violet’s main plot point was still the boy she was crushing on in the first film but she is a teenage girl, so I can see why they went with that. I would have preferred her working on her newfound confidence but she clearly didn’t have trouble displaying her anger management issues when trying to destroy her Super Suit. (#Goals.) Dash was given the struggles of math homework, which would also be relevant to a child around his age I believe. I thought he was a terrible babysitter, and that’s probably realistic as well. I did laugh when he called his mother, who was out on a mission, to ask where something he had misplaced was. This literally does happen to my coworkers who are moms so I thought it was hilarious! Lastly Jack-Jack was probably the most relatable as he was cookie-obsessed and turned into the demon baby if he didn’t get a cookie. Also he it turns out he was poorly behaved because he missed his mom! So cute!
As for Winston and Evelyn, I liked their addition. I could immediately tell Evelyn was the mastermind, as could every adult in the theater I’m sure. But they were really passionate and driven. Winston was the idealistic sibling with plans and the people skills while Evelyn’s technical skills were what allowed her to create the persona of the Screenslaver.
The Screenslaver itself was slightly uncomfortable as it seems like something that could be possible. Perhaps I’ve been watching too many Shane Dawson conspiracy videos on YouTube but every so often the conversation does resurface of how much screen time is too much and how susceptible we are to it. I liked that it introduced this concept to kids and hopefully did get their little minds thinking that maybe they should question their own screens a little more.
Clearly, I enjoyed the film! I’m so glad it exists and I do think the wait was worth it. I much prefer that Pixar takes it’s time to find not just any story to continue the tale of their films, but they wait for the right story which makes all the difference.
And that’s my review on the Incredibles 2, along with Bao! In the end, I do recommend you see it if you did enjoy the first Incredibles and these types of films. It was fun and sweet, and the strong sense of family and responsibility is amazing to see.
So, have you seen the film yet? Do you plan to? Let me know!
Thanks for reading!
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