The Incredibles 2 (2018)
Pixar is the movie making equivalent of The Beatles. Their output is so good, so consistent and so much better than most of what everyone else is doing in their field. The movies Pixar are making will stand the test of time. Computer generated images may evolve closer and closer to photo-realism, but the stories Pixar are telling, and the emotional depth of those stories, will remain timeless.
Take Toy Story. It was Pixar's first film and the first ever fully computer generated animated movie. Today, that animation looks very dated. But does that hurt the enjoyment of the movie? Not a bit. It still has the power to make you laugh, make you cry, to excite and uplift, that it did when it first opened 23 years ago.
The Incredibles was Pixar's sixth film. It took what made The Sopranos so relatable, and adapted it to the family film market. Only instead of a mobster trying to balance family life with crime life, it was a family of superheroes trying to balance family life with hero life.
The Incredibles 2 builds upon that exploration, while adding a very modern times girl power anchor that enables it to further examine the redefinition of gender roles in today's society, and what effect that has on marriages (or common law courtships).
The Incredi-kids are also a little older than in the last movie and the filmmakers have a lot of fun using the hormonal teenage years and the terrible twos to put Mr. Incredible through his paces when he finds himself on Mr. Mom duty for much of the film.
The domestic balancing act, as deftly as it's handled and relatable as it is, is only half the story though. The other half is, of course, The Incredibles. The mask-on Incredibles, here to save the day. This time from an evil hypnotist called Screenslaver, which is much too cute a name to be even remotely threatening. But he tries his best, using the airwaves to turn screens all over the city into hypnosis-machines. He also has a handy gadget in the form of hypno-glasses, which he uses to hypnotize some of the superheroes in the movie to do his bidding.
Interestingly, Screenslaver doesn't want money, or to take over the world, or even to harm anyone. All he wants is superheroes to go away.
At the beginning of the movie, superheroes are considered a menace and are outlawed the world over. This is the movie's weakest and most unoriginal plot point. But Mrs. Incredible, with the help of a wealthy fan/investor, helps give superheroes their good name back by saving a train full of people from plummeting off a half finished track. This is the movie's best action set piece and some people have already called this rescue one of the best action scenes in movie history. Whether it is or not, it's super exciting and super impressive, even for a superhero of Mrs. Incredible's mettle. But these heroics piss Screenslaver off and thus, he fights back.
I haven't disliked anything Pixar has put out. Were Cars 2 and The Good Dinosaur disappointing? Yes, they were. But that's only because we've come to expect so much from this studio. Coco was one of the best movies of last year, Inside Out is one of the best movies ever and the Toy Story trilogy is probably one of the three or four greatest trilogies in movie history.
So when I say that The Incredibles 2 is one of Pixar's best films to date, I'm not messing around.
I always seem to say this when writing about a Pixar film, because it's always true: see this movie. I don't care how old you are, you are going to love it.