“… amazing for both children and adults alike.”
The Incredibles is a movie that I, much like many other people I’m sure, regard as a very important part of my childhood. One thing that sticks out to me and sets The Incredibles apart from all of the other movies I watched endlessly as a child is that my parents always seemed inclined to watch it as well. Watching The Incredibles again last night for the first time in god knows how long really opened my eyes to a lot of the nuance that makes the movie so great, and also what makes Pixar a successful company.
The first thing I need to discuss is the animation. The Incredibles was released in 2004, fourteen years ago as of writing this review, and as we all know digital animation has only gotten better with time. With that being said The Incredibles looks as though it could have been released for the first time yesterday. The film takes a stance that stylizes all of the characters enough to not date them, but also takes great care in the small details that make these very same characters come to life in an almost creepy manner. The way the characters look, interact with one another, interact with the environment; all of these things create a stunningly realistic, yet wonderfully stylized world in which the Parr family are free to roam. And what makes the animation in The Incredibles so great is that it knows its strengths. Sure the characters are highly detailed, but in settings like the sprawling city that serves as the backdrop for a lot of the action set pieces the animators know how to pull focus. Although everything still looks great, there is a distinct lack of detail in the background of a lot of the shots which works wonderfully to not detract from the amazing detail that was given to these characters. We can fully respect how much work went into choreographing and animating certain scenes when our attention is being held completely by that scene. Its this intelligence that sets good artists apart from great ones, and nobody who worked on The Incredibles is short of great.
The second thing I want to discuss is the story of The Incredibles. Pixar is known for having stories that are very adult, if only in the undertones. This creates a movie that is enjoyable for children, but also for adults. The Incredibles is no different, and as a matter of fact I would say its their most adult story yet. The Incredibles features a very realistic look at what a world filled with superheroes would resemble. Sure there are moments of triumph and corny one-liners, but there are also moments of darkness and legal battles. A lot of this stuff would go over a child’s head, so it was put in there solely for the adults watching this movie. And to add to this point, The Incredibles did a great job at highlighting the monotony the Parr family deals with in their everyday lives despite being superheroes. This is a very relatable point for anyone who is old enough to vote, and it once again highlights just how mature this movie actually is. And one thing that really sold the real-life aspect of The Incredibles were the performances. Apart from Samuel L. Jackson, none of the actors in the movie were particularly well known at the time of its release. Hell, they still aren’t that well known. And I didn’t bring this up just to spite them, but instead to congratulate that fact. Not having the Parr family cast with recognizable voices really added to the realism of the movie and created another layer of immersion. And another thing: they were great! The performances given in The Incredibles are nothing short of amazing. The emotion felt in most of the lines, the realism in the bickering between Violet and Dash, the love felt by the entire family; all of it is phenomenal.
Overall The Incredibles is a movie that is amazing for both children and adults alike. It’s fun, heartfelt, and also an interesting look at what superheroes would face in a realistic world.
I give The Incredibles an A