The Incredibles


Whilst much of the film-reviewing world had multiple orgasms around the release of The Incredibles, I was somewhat anxious – after criticism of my reviewing, and my ‘lack of appreciation of comedies’, I thought it likely I would be copping a barrage again. So be it.

The IncrediblesThe Incredibles is an adequate piece of film-making, with excellent animation, some great humour, and exciting action, but it fails on other levels, leaving it much less than the best film of the year as I’ve heard it referred to. Much of the first half of this film had as much life as a dead fish floating around my fish tank. I wanted to shout at the screen, and beg them to get on with it. Where Spider-Man 2 effectively explored the difficulties of being super-powered in its first half, The Incredibles imitates this poorly. Not only was this section too long, but also – dare I say it – it featured caricature only, not character. Bob & Helen Parr are an animated version of a stereotyped couple facing midlife crises, nothing more. I can’t believe other reviewers felt this movie resonated depth and understanding.

When it finally does get going, there are fun and thrills to be had. Jason Lee voices Syndrome well, but the real scene stealer is Dash Parr, the boy with wings on his feet. The most exciting action always involved Dash. Jackson’s Frozone was disappointingly underused. My favourite character though was obviously Edna Mode, who was simply superb.

The story struggles to release itself from this top-heavy first half, and when it is boiled down, is actually very simple. It certainly doesn’t support 121 minutes of screen time.

While The Incredibles is better than Shark Tale, it is regular everyday fodder. If you’re expecting your world to move after seeing it, don’t hold your breath…

Rating: 2.5 stars
Review by Mark Lavercombe, 1st January 1970
Hoopla Factor: 3.0 stars


Pixar certainly are the leaders in their field. Even when their films don’t quite hit the mark (Finding Nemo) they’re still damn good. With The Incredibles they have created possibly their best film to date.

The IncrediblesThe Incredibles is just about perfect. Hilarious (as always), with great characterisations and thrilling action sequences. This is certainly the most adult of the Pixar films, and at times I wondered if kids could actually follow the finer details of the plot (although I’m sure they’d love it all the same). Then again, the only complaint I had about this film was that it was a bit predictable. It’s strange that there were also a couple of the usual Hollywood gratuitous flashbacks, yet they were so quick that I doubt many younger kids would grasp on quick enough.

The animation is superb. Rather than go for photo realism, Pixar’s characters are thankfully comical, and the ‘cinematography’ constantly wows us with doing things real film could not. I loved the retro look of the film.

There is a standout performance by director Brad Bird as Edna ‘E’ Mode. Every time she said anything she had the audience in stitches.

The Incredibles is easily one of the best films of the year, and it’s times like this that you can be sure Disney are thankful for their partnership with Pixar. Without it, they certainly would be up the proverbial creek (does anyone remember Home On The Range or Brother Bear? I didn’t think so…).

By the way, the accompanying short Boundin’ had me a little confused. Was that supposed to be funny? Or is it some famous American kids’ poem I’m unfamiliar with? It certainly seemed a bit Bill Peet-ish.

Rating: 4.5 stars
Review by Stuart Wilson, 1st January 1970
Hoopla Factor: 5.0 stars

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