The Pixar Sequel About A Family of Superheroes is Back and Full of Surprises
After 14 years The Incredibles 2, a sequel to one of Pixar’s most beloved films will debut in theaters worldwide, continuing the story of the Parr family and their curious case of their ongoing superhero adventures.
What poised creator Brad Bird and Pixar to step back into this retro futuristic 1960’s world of sharp architecture and “Mad Men” style clothing?
According to Bird, it was not the money. “Many sequels are cash grabs. Money on the table is not why I get up in the morning, having people enjoy my movies 100 years from now is what gets me up in the morning. It makes no financial sense to wait this long, we have a story to tell.”
The first Incredibles film came out in 2004 to near-universal acclaim, where the story of a family of superheroes and their friends took center stage. Voiced by Samuel L. Jackson, Holly Hunter, John Ratzenberger, Sarah Vowell and as the leader of the family, Craig T. Nelson as Mr. Incredible, the film centered on the Parr family of Bob, Helen, Violet, Dash and baby Jack-Jack.
In the sequel they are back, and with minor changes like a new voice actor for Dash, and newcomers like Bob Odenkirk and Sophia Bush, the crew and story stick closely to the original. It takes place mere minutes after the original left off, where the Parr family, now all costumed up after learning to accept that a family is stronger together, (literally in their case), is ready to face off against the threat of the mole like Underminer and his giant drill-based vehicle which tunnels out of the ground into the streets of Metroville.
A Second Adventure
The boilerplate synopsis for the sequel reads: “Elastigirl springs into action to save the day, while Mr. Incredible faces his greatest challenge yet — taking care of the problems of his three children.” In this simple statement, we are introduced to the idea that Elastigirl (Holly Hunter), is going solo for most of the journey of the sequel.
Although the film’s narrative has been kept mum up until now, new details have emerged from the Pixar team on what the course of the film will deal with.
The first 22 minutes of footage dealt with picking up the film after the first Incredibles and the fate of the Underminer battle that closed the 2004 story and setting up the “superhero redemption” plot of the sequel.
The animation is similar to the original film for the first few minutes and subtly changes to the higher resolution and animation dynamics that come with 14 years of tech advancements, and the experience of 13 additional films under Pixar’s belt since The Incredibles’ release.
Bird says that the new film will touch on the first films main themes, which he says were “The roles of men and women, fathers and mothers, how teenagers see the world, midlife crisis, the importance of father’s participating and allowing women to express themselves in work just like men do.”
The central core to the film has always been the difficulties of parenthood, and as Bird puts it, “that parenting is a heroic act.”
In footage screened for the press at Pixar Studios earlier this month, there was scenes of the introduction to two mysterious siblings who run a telecommunications company called DevTech. Voiced by Bob Odenkirk and Catherine Keener, the brother and sister duo Winston and Evelyn Deavor have called upon the supers to help change the public perception of them and revert the laws that have made it illegal to work or in any way be a superhero.
At first the trio of Mr. and Mrs. Incredible and Frozone (Samuel L. Jackson) meet with the siblings in their giant company headquarters, a tower reminiscent of a stack of playing chips. Their initial pitch is for the Parr’s to do great things as superheroes to restore faith in the supers in Metroville, but that’s as far as we get with the two in the scenes shown to the media.
Elastigirl takes center stage in what we’ve seen so far, and specifically in a really great action scene where she is first trying out her Elasticycle in her new job as DevTech’s hired superhero.
The high-tech motorcycle can come apart and move with her as she expands and contorts, and it is put on full display in the scene we were shown.
It involved Elastigirl on a city chase on the streets weaving through traffic and on rooftops as she tries to stop Metroville’s new passenger filled mag lev train from coming to a crash after it mysteriously goes haywire on its maiden voyage.
One of the most mysterious aspects of the film is the new villain, which any good superhero film needs. The first film had the boy who grew up to be a crazed #1 fan in the form of Syndrome. Of course, since the fate of that villain was to be sucked into his plane’s engine due to the unfortunate fashion choice of having a cape, there needed to be someone else to face off against the Parr family in the sequel.
Although we didn’t get to see much of the new villain, a bit has been revealed about him/her. At the end of the final Incredibles 2 trailer as a masked and goggle-wearing foe named The Screen Slaver. It is apparent from the trailer that this villain will use hypnosis, but to do what? And what is his/her motivations? That will be seen come June 15th.