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  • Nikhil Bhagwat

Incredibles 2: “In-credi-dull!”

Voice Cast: Craig. T. Nelson, Holly Hunter, Samuel L Jackson, Bob Odenkirk and others

Release Date: June 22, 2018

Nikhil’s Rating: **1/2

Runtime: 118 Minutes (2 Hours)

Incredibles 2 is probably one of the most anticipated animated feature films of this year. As a cine-goer, would it be wrong to expect a compelling story after what the prequel delivered? This is especially true after an anxious wait of 14 years for the release. The first in the series, The Incredibles released in 2004! Yes, you heard that right! Don’t tell me that I didn’t warn you.

This film propels from exactly the point from where the last one ended. If you need a refresher, watch the first one again. The family of “Super heroes” namely- Mr. Incredible, Elastagirl, Dash, Violet, their toddler Jack Jack & their uncle “Frozone” are battling a nemesis- The Underminer. Their job together is to protect the city from some form destruction- A plot line that has been overused in almost all superhero films. The novelty of the superhero film has died down in mainstream filmmaking especially after the Marvel & DC films- An apt term from James Cameron comes to mind here: Marvel/Superhero “fatigue” in general. This doesn’t mean I don’t like such movies. But it is the base of the narrative here too.

The original movie had a story that was novel in 2004 (the year the first one released). It had a unique story & the silver lining was the style of its narration. The Incredibles had a clever mix of an engaging plot, humour and action set-pieces that to this day are entertaining. Matching the expectations and making a sequel to a well received film is a huge burden to handle.

In this film they reverse roles. Mr. Incredible is left to look after and care for the kids. Elastagirl is sent off to a mission to save the country from destruction. There’s nothing wrong in doing so. In fact, it is a welcome change and a great idea; and parts of it do bring a smile to the audiences faces. In addition, the theme explored is of relevance in today’s time: considering the gender equality debates that have ensued recently, in both the west and at home.

The first half of the film is a slog. One gets a sense of what the one line story is but that is about it. It is not only boring but is also not half as crisp or relentless as it ought to have been. Incredibles 2 takes the route of “family values” and the “choices” that one makes in life. If you have watched the trailer or promo, this film is a bloated extension of the same idea; stretched into a 2 hour film. It is the longest animated feature film that Pixar has ever produced in terms of length. Another problem with the film is that it has too many characters who haven’t been fully utilised to create a lasting impact on patrons. It also at times bores the audience.

You must be wondering, does he have anything positive to say about the film? All he is doing is ranting about it? Oh yes; there are a few positives but these are in the technical aspects of the movie and few and far-in-between in the screenplay. I for one do not understand why Brad Bird, the director of the film took so long to release the film. There is no doubt that an animated film, especially of this scale, is very hard to write and present. To give credit where it is due, the animation in the film in terms of Production Design and detailing is extremely realistic and great to watch. But that alone is not enough to make a movie compelling.

Two characters I enjoyed watching are Jack-Jack, the toddler of the Parr household. Jack Jack and the other one is Edna Mode. He gets adequate screen time and for the audience to discover his cuteness quotient. Edna; the fashion designer is coincidently, voiced by Brad Bird himself; brings the house down to a certain degree in the second half.

To be honest, this film was so eagerly awaited for a long time that it ought to have been a pacy and an “Incredible” ride throughout- pun intended. But alas, it is not the case. If you have watched the first movie and had been blown away, then I am sorry to report that this one might disappoint you- A third one is probably on the horizon.

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