Movie Review: The Incredibles
Story:(This is a Guest Review by my pal, Nicole Greevy). A married couple of (forcibly) retired superheroes must return to action to save the world -- this time aided by their also-superhero kids.
Ostensibly a kids' movie, but what makes this film so much fun are the parts that are best appreciated by grownups. Superheroes have been put into a supered-up version of the Witness Protection Program as a result of lawsuits brought by the people they rescue. Set up with corporate drone jobs, they live in the suburbs, have families, gain weight, and attempt to live normal lives-- while a burgeoning super-villain starts to hunt them down, one by one.
Pixar's films just get better and better. A fun, exciting and hilarious romp. Highly recommend for all ages.
Acting: Just voices, of course, but all very good. Craig T. Nelson is both sweet and overblown as Bob Parr/Mr. Incredible, the incredibly strong man who misses his old gig, and Holly Hunter, as Helen Parr/Elastigirl is his smart, sexy, tough wife and mother of three (My fiance, Todd, would like me to note that he thinks she's the sexiest cartoon character since Jessica Rabbit).Jason Lee is a funny, obnoxious geek-turned-super-villain and Samuel L. Jackson is great as Lucius Best/Frozone, Mr. Incredible's best friend.Writer/Director Brad Bird does a hilarious turn as Edna Mode, the couture designer of superhero costumes (I always DID wonder where superhero outfits came from...). She looks like a cross between Coco Chanel and Ayn Rand. Steals every scene she's in.
Predilection:I love Pixar films, which is to say I go in with very high standards.(Already I'm concerned about Cars, for which I saw a trailer before the film started...)
Critters:I can't remember, but since they're all animated, I don't think it counts, anyway.
Food:A family dinner scene and lots of baby food for the youngest Incredible, Jack Jack.
Visual Art: It's an animation film. It's ALL visual art.
Blatant Product PlacementNone I recall, so no.
Soundtrack:According to what I'm reading on imdb.com, composer Michael Giacchino used Henry Mancini's and John Barry's works as inspiration for the jazz-orchestra score and used analog recording methods that were the standard in the 1960's. Whatever The score had a very James Bond feel, and definitely enhanced the picture.
Opening Titles:Very brief; just The Incredibles! after a funny newsreel opening.
Theater AudienceWe saw the film the Friday after Thanksgiving in Harrisburg, PA.The theater was packed with families, all of whom either seemed enthralled (the kid in front of me) or less so (my two nieces, who fell asleep, but hey, the oldest one is only three, so what do you expect? At least they were quiet).
Sappy Factor: For a movie about a family, not really. Again, Pixar.
Quirky Meter:The movie really embraces the superhero genre, so comic-book fans will find a lot to like. Does that count as quirky?
Drift Range:I was rapt the whole time.
Squirm Scale:No, but it is a bit darker than I'm used to for a kids' film.Rated PG, and with reason. People die.
Predictability Level:Well, I was pretty sure they wouldn't bump off the kids and that a happy ending would eventually come about.
Tissue Usage: No.
Oscar Worthy:Yes, actually. The thing with Pixar-- they understand that a good animation film starts with a good script.And Pixar's best movies have scripts waaaay better than a lot of what's out there-- and not just in animation. In fact, I think the whole Best Animated Film Oscar category is stupid and exists only because the Academy is still annoyed about 1991 being such a dry year that Beauty and the Beast got a Best Picture nod... but I digress.
Nit Picking:Only one-- though before noting it I would like to say I HATE loose ends in films, and this one tied up every one I could think of (see Pixar and good script, above).BUT... after years in the 'burbs, Mr. Incredible was quite, um, large, and Elastigirl was not (though she is very curvy. Todd would like me to say again how sexy he thought she was). What is it with fat men and their sexy wives in movies and TV? Makes me NUTS.
Big Screen or Rental: Big screen, definitely.
Length:121 minutes -- long for a kids' film. But I'm not a kid, so I didn't care.
LOBO HOWLS (ALA Nicole): 9. This movie is a lot of fun. And Todd would like me to again mention that Elastigirl is hot.