Movie Review - Incredibles 2
It's odd that the basic idea that was underneath the first film isn't carried into this one. That idea was about using technology to give everyone super-powers and how that would affect things. Instead, writer-director Brad Bird goes back to the legality of super-heroes, which was essentially what the first film had as its theme and was a basic theme of X-Men (2000) and some of its sequels. The movie's basic question is if super-heroes or people with super-powers should be legal.
Yet, the movie doesn't want to have the kind of conversations that would be comparable to conversations about the legal status of marginalized people in this country. The super-heroes here are not akin to undocumented immigrants but they would be akin to how gay people or LGBT people have been treated in many countries, including the United States. Unfortunately, this movie doesn't have those conversations and it's arguable if any LGBT people are even identified here.
Given the recent film Tully by Jason Reitman, the reversal here is a good one for feminists or for reinforcing this idea of the difficulties of parenthood, which mostly is born out of white, middle class portrayals. There is a black character in this film named Frozone, voiced by Samuel L. Jackson, but his home life or if he has kids is never explored, which could have provided an interesting contrast between how white parents raise children as opposed to how black parents do it. It's just we've never seen films portray black parents as put upon or depressed as the white parents in Tully or even this film. This lack of diverse representation of parenthood is also compounded by the fact that the Pixar short film that preceded this feature was about how Asian parents raise children.
Bird basically took his script for the 2004 film, copied and tweeked it by gender-swapping a few things, but what carries the film beyond what Deadpool would call "lazy writing" is some pretty, well-done action sequences. The whole thing is rather undermined, not by the actual character in this flick named the Underminer, but by the main villain whose plot seems so convoluted for no reason and whose goal could have been achieved through vastly simpler means.
Rated PG for action sequences and mild language.
Running Time: 1 hr. and 58 mins.