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‘Incredibles 2’ review: Baby’s day out

A scene from the movie.   | Photo Credit: Special arrangement

Things don’t begin quite well for The Parr Family as we see them back on the big screen after 14 years battling Underminer and trying to stop him from robbing the Metroville Bank. The Super Relocation programme has been shut down, the superheroes have been declared illegal and a dreary future awaits the family of five—a week in the motel and a dull routine thereafter with Bob taking on a normal job and Helen managing the home.

Things brighten up when their super-friend Frozone shows the way to telecom tycoon and superhero fan Winston Deavor and his brilliant sister Evelyn. The two have a plan to bring the spotlight back on the superheroes’ crime-fighting ways and to get them their rightful legal place in the sun. While they recruit Helen aka Elastigirl for their mission, Bob takes charge of the new fancy home and kids. The dash of dark comes in later in the form of the new villain ScreenSlaver. What follows is a breathless rollercoaster ride with some breakneck action set-pieces, identifiable, heart-tugging emotions and sparkling humour. The visuals, voiceovers and music are all in perfect sync. Brad Bird creates an immersive, mesmerising world that you flow into unquestioningly instead of pausing to crib about the sundry plotholes and twists and turns.

Incredibles 2
  • Director: Brad Bird
  • Cast: Craig T. Nelson, Holly Hunter, Samuel L. Jackson
  • Storyline: The Parr family—Bob, Helen, Dash, Violet and Jack Jack—returns in the sequel to The Incredibles (2004) to get superheroes their rightful place back in American crime-fighting.
  • Runtime: 118 minutes

The film is also thoughtful in its own way. Though set in 1960s it’s got something eminently contemporray about it. Be it the portrayal of adolescent angst, the theme of domesticity and parental role-playing or that of bridging the gender divides. The hunky man slips back into the home and the kitchen, making pancakes, changing diapers and learning maths in order to be able to teach his son. On the other hand – the lady of the house, the supposedly weaker sex, riding away manically in her new wheels to save the city, society, country and humanity.

In the midst of the preponderance of bro-code, both in films and in reality, there is a freshness to the woman-to-woman talk between Helen and Evelyn, a rare sorority of sisters. There is also a larger comment on the image-heavy world we live in. If, on the one hand, media and its images can be harnessed positively to build support and public trust, you also have the ScreenSlaver hypnotising and brainwashing people into zombies, something our mobiles, tablets, laptops and the Whatsapp forwards are wont to do.

Of course, all this plays out more superficial than profound but then Incredibles 2 consciously harks back to the simple and the fun than the dark and angsty world of the superheroes. Here the weather is primarily sunny with just some showers and a few dark spells. Blame it all on the youngest member of the Parr family. Jack Jack is a thumping reassertion of the stress-busting capability of the widely circulated Taimur Ali Khan pictures and the innumerable cats, dogs and kids videos. Without them how will we ever find our sanity? The infant Parr brings the house down with his pot pourri of newly-found powers. He is an irresistible, endlessly gurgly delight who singlehandedly fashions a film that can bring a big, huge “awwwww” out of the most cynical of critics.

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Printable version | Feb 25, 2021 2:47:36 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/entertainment/movies/incredibles-2-review-babys-day-out/article24232457.ece

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