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Review: The Incredibles 2

This sequel falls just short of incredible.

Pixar’s films have always held a strong grasp on story. Diving into their creative process, it’s clear to see that creating a strong backbone utilizing rich characters and storytelling is paramount. It’s the key reason The Incredibles came out to such acclaim, and a pillar to Pixar’s continued success. Fourteen years later and after much demand comes The Incredibles 2; however while the first film felt like a statement for the studio, this sequel comes off as an enjoyable echo with a story structure that is all too similar to its predecessor.

The film picks up right where they left us fourteen years ago, with the Underminer attacking the city, and the family prepped to save the day. However, this is not the film we left with and that is clear from the first bit of footage you see. The Incredibles 2 is a spectacle, sporting some of the most insane lighting in an animated motion picture, and detail that lays waste to many Pixar films that have come before it. Certain supporting characters were almost unrecognizable in their updated models, but it was always for the better.

The character models weren’t the only update given to everyone’s favourite animated family. The script exceptionally allows us to dive in a little deeper to our heroes, in fact the colourful characters are the freshest thing about the film. The flick’s key issue is it’s reliance on story structure from its predecessor, leaving you with a film that is all too predictable, and almost doesn’t justify its existence. Does that make it bad? Far from it in fact. The film is still a lot of fun at times because of the beautifully scripted dialogue and brilliant fight choreography. The new characters are also a great addition to the fun, but after all this time with the first film the filmmakers should have pushed the type of story possible with this set of characters.

The Incredibles is a Pixar classic. It continued to cement the company as an animation juggernaut and delighted audiences for years. The delight was so overwhelming that the studio spurred the sequel, but does that justify a new film? Does new technology justify a new film, or even something as simple as an IP purchase? Sequels should be spurred off of new stories that aren’t shadows of their past selves. That happens when writers wait for new stories to come to them, not when they put pen to paper due to fan outcry. At best this brings mediocrity, and that’s what we have here, a film that isn’t necessarily bad, in fact it’s enjoyable. With characters like the ones Bird and his team have developed this film had much more room to grow, but this sequel falls just short of incredible.

Andrew Hamilton

Andrew Hamilton is a Toronto based filmmaker and creative mad man. Legend has it that he spent most of his childhood locked away in a cell beta testing Netflix.