So, I highly recommend you rewatch the original to be recaught up on a few plotlines that transition right to this. Taking place a second after the Underminer came out of the ground saying “Soon all will trip up before me”, the Parr family have their masks on and ready to fight. But there’s a problem; despite saving the world from Syndrome and the big robot three months ago, the clause making superhero action illegal is still on the go. Then a big businessman named Winston Deavor calls up Bob, Helen and Frozone. His father was a long-time superhero advocate and wants Elastigirl to help him put superheroes back on the positive side of the rest of the world to make them legal again, but there’s a strange supervillain named Screenslaver wreaking mind-control havoc and is clearly supremely against superheroes, and the rest of the family is at home focusing on their own personal problems but it won’t be long before they are pulled back into careening (not really) and anarchic danger.
The first trailer showed primarily Bob looking after the kids and trying to prevail and using all of his might to keep things in order. And I was worried about that, because for people with high expectations like me, doing that sort of familiar plot where there could instead be some more of those amazing action sequences of the family could’ve been a disaster. But something its predecessor also did right was balance excitement with a realistically together but disconnected crew. Violet was so shy and desired to be alone, her superpowers both are on the basis of not being touched. Dash kept getting sent to the principal’s office and wants to go out for sports and doesn’t see why he has to lay low. And Brad Bird makes it so that not only do we have a balanced amount of action and family bonding but the bonding scenes make you interested on what they are supposed to lead to.
Elastigirl in the spotlight is more than okay. It allows the team to go bonkers with inventive ways of being able to bend and use them to save the world, from jumping over police cars to catapulting yourself to being not just a parachute but a squirrel suit, fitting through a window’s cage bars. And we all enjoy every second of it.
Something you’ve most likely heard about is Jack Jack’s big plethora of powers, and the amazement to the imagination the writer’s have at all of this even feels tribute to another trick Pixar did with Inside Out three years ago (god, has it already been that long?) For the main character (who’s not an emotion)’s childhood, they brought back audio clips from Mary Gibbs, the voice of Boo from Monsters Inc. when she was a toddler and saying those lines. The boy who played the voice of Jack Jack is now a teenager but they brought back his lines recorded from the first one too. Nice touch. Oh, and let’s not forget all the swiftly creative ways a new character’s superpower is made. Watching Voyd create portals, I actually think my flying superpower dream might have competition.
The voice actors are having just as much fun as last time, though here, Sarah Vowell, the voice of Violet, who SERIOUSLY needs to have more work in the voice acting world, has a resplendent and completely distinctive and sometimes even broiling energy. I couldn’t get enough of her. And the rest of the voice actors, who all went back into their super suits like it was just yesterday the first was released, minus Dash, who’s now voiced by Huck Milner, all just keep up the characters and performances of these characters that made them classics. There’s very little not to like here. What would those little things be?
I’d say the villain reveal is crazy obvious, unlike the first movie which if I’d seen with the intellect of today I never would’ve thought of. There was also a plotline that picks up from the last movie and then doesn’t take any big extra steps which is a little disappointing when you wait this long for some extra progress on storylines, but these are tres tres minor, especially when you create a picture that’s three minutes longer than its predecessor, The Incredibles formerly being the longest 3D animated movie ever. Breaking a record doesn’t promise greatness but after the long wait, this big time allows us to once again appreciate and have a satisfying amount of time with every character (especially Edna, hilariously voiced by Bird), and gives reasonable time with the family plotline before it needs to dive into the big fight.
Now, please, step on Incredibles 3! If you make us wait 14 years for the next one, I’ll purposefully animate my own sequel. You were able to make three Cars movies in between these two!