INCREDIBLES 2 Reviews Are Here But Does The Animated Superhero Sequel Live Up To Expectations?

The first reviews for Incredibles 2 have landed but what do critics think about the animated sequel and does it live up to the lofty heights its predecessor reached fourteen years ago? Find out here...

Believe it or not, it's been fourteen years since The Incredibles hit theaters. With such a huge gap between that movie and its sequel (which is set to be released this Friday), expectations are understandably high and with early projections pointing to Incredibles 2 being a hit, the pressure is on director Brad Bird to deliver. Well, based on this first wave of reviews, it seems that it succeeds!

As you can see by clicking on the "View List" button below, there's a mixture of verdicts from the trades, entertainment websites, newspapers, and more. Some reviews aren't overwhelmingly positive but there's not really a truly bad one among the bunch and that's good news for Pixar following a couple of disappointments over the past few years with the likes of Cars 3 and The Good Dinosaur.

So, check out the Incredibles 2 reviews below and then share your thoughts on them in the usual place.




True, this means Incredibles 2 doesn't enjoy the same advantages of a well-run cinematic universe that, say, Avengers: Infinity War did. Your emotional attachment to the characters isn't as strong, and your familiarity with the universe isn't as deep.  But it also gets to avoid some of the pitfalls. Incredibles 2 doesn't need to spend time tending to potential spinoff characters or setting up possible sequels, or wink-wink-nudge-nudging at stuff you've seen in other movies. You can even enjoy it without having seen the first Incredibles, though it's probably a little easier to follow if you have. It feels like a proper movie, with a beginning, middle, and an end, rather than just another entry in an extremely lavish and slow-moving TV series. It's a satisfying meal unto itself – one delicious enough that you'll probably want to return for another helping, sometime in the future. 

SOURCE: Mashable

Incredibles 2 sits as a more than worthy entry into the pantheon of Pixar sequels and a bright, stylish, hilarious return to the Parr family’s high-flying, Silver Age-flavored world.

SOURCE: CBR

Pixar doesn’t have the greatest track record when it comes to sequels, but this follow-up surpasses most everything without Toy Story in the title. The animation is stellar and detailed in excellent action sequences, Michael Giacchino’s score swings harder than ever, and the first film’s family-friendly warmth is just as appealing now as it was then, even if Incredibles 2 isn’t totally incredible itself.

SOURCE: USA Today
 


Sequels, especially sequels that came out over a decade since the original, are a tricky prospect. The original casts a longer and longer shadow as its popularity grows, and it becomes difficult for a sequel to make a splash on its own terms while retaining what people liked about the first movie. While it never quite reaches the delirious highs of The Incredibles, Incredibles 2 is a worthwhile sequel that never loses sight of why we fell in love with these superheroes in the first place. [B+]

SOURCE: Collider

Really, the only negative things to say about Incredibles 2 are that, after 14 years, the opening of the film is forced to jam in a lot of narratives to catch everyone up, and the structure is very similar to the first film. Yes, this time we learn more about the characters; the world is bigger, the action better, there’s more going on beyond the screen, and the film is wildly entertaining throughout. But, despite all those things, at times the film can feel like a mere continuation or rehash of the first movie instead of an escalation or elevation of it. And those little asterisks are all that holds Incredibles 2 back from being a pantheon Pixar sequel.

SOURCE: io9

I do wonder if the 14-year wait between movies will have people expecting something “grandiose” or “important.” That’s not really what Incredibles 2 is or what it’s trying to be. Instead, it feels like a direct extension of the first film. It feels like a movie that could have easily come out in 2006 as opposed to now, which is what makes Incredibles 2 so fun. It doesn’t belong to a time, so ten years from now both of these installments will just seem like they’ve always just kind of been here. Incredibles 2 will now take its rightful place alongside the first film in the “family canon.”

SOURCE: Uproxx
 


As ever, the package is widescreen gorgeous, from the color-popping but realistically lit visuals, to Bird’s classically rigorous framing and shot movement, and, resembling nostalgia for nostalgia, there’s the return of Michael Giacchino’s delectably brassy, spy-movie pastiche score. (Stay through the end credits for the individual, amusingly lyricized themes for our heroes, including a soul-snazzy entry for ice-generating, Samuel L. Jackson-voiced Frozone, who’s back as well.)

SOURCE: The Wrap

Even so, I’d be lying if I said I didn’t enjoy myself. The action scenes may be broadly predictable, but they still offer rare humor, verve and visual invention. There are new superheroes, funny ones. (One guy is named Reflux: “Medical condition or superpower … you decide!”)  And while Incredibles 2 rarely treads new stylistic or thematic ground, what it lacks in cohesion or originality it makes up for with a remorseless willingness to entertain. I’m told that certain societies have a word for such phenomena. They call them “sequels.”

SOURCE: Village Voice

It’s true that the “Toy Story” films, all three of which are fantastic, did variations on the same theme of a toy’s obsolescence, but as movies they kept the emotions close to the surface. In “Incredibles 2,” we never get that rush of feeling. Yet Brad Bird, who once again voices Edna the sawed-off Teutonic fashionista, hasn’t lost his wizardly gift for orchestrating a sight gag. The Parrs’ youngest child, Jack-Jack (Eli Fucile), with his infant tuft of hair that’s like a single devil horn, revealed his superpower near the end of “The Incredibles” (when he caught fire and morphed into a purple ogre), and in “Incredibles 2” he’s got that and other powers to spare, from levitation to laser vision. Is he the film’s reigning crowd-pleaser? You bet. I wouldn’t be surprised if there was a movement to give him his own sequel. But that, even if it happened, would have very little to do with what made “The Incredibles” incredible.

SOURCE: Variety
 


It is a funny, thoughtful, and thrilling adventure that artistically justifies itself without invalidating what came before.

SOURCE: Forbes

The sequence where Jack-Jack gets into a fight with a raccoon would have worked better as a separate short film. Still, watching him giggle and spew lasers from his eyes and fluster his parents (and his dad in particular) is never not funny. Incredibles 2 is kind of like Jack-Jack; relatively small, extremely smart, bursting with potential, and capable of mutating into a new form in a matter of seconds. One scene might be about the most mundane familial drama imaginable. In the next, Helen might meet new supers with incredible powers like Voyd (Sophia Bush), who can create portals between different places, a skill Bird and the Pixar team use to very clever effect during the film’s fight sequences.

SOURCE: Screen Crush

It's still fun to watch smart storytellers like Bird working within the system and using his platform to self-evaluate or comment on what's going on, even if the conclusion is a little flimsy. Bird could have easily just brought back his lovable characters, leaned on Jack Jack's antics and cashed in the check. It makes the effort and care here seem even more incredible.

SOURCE: Associated Press
 


Incredibles 2 definitely attempts to have its McShake and eat it too, however the fact the film tries to put that vegetable alongside it, even if sugar-crazed Jack-Jack is unimpressed, automatically gives it more substance than the boilerplate superhero movies that’ve come to dominate the culture in the Parr family’s absence. That the animated family can go there, and genuinely make the case for why the concept of superheroes were so euphoric once upon a time in spite of mass commercialization, causes this film to have the kind of zip only reserved for Dash. In that sense, it’s kind of incredible, really. [4/5]

SOURCE: Den Of Geek

If there’s one quibble with this nimble entertainment, it’s that Bird’s eye-popping flair outpaces his story’s emotional resonance. Incredibles 2 is such a fleet treat that it doesn’t always stop for its characters’ pathos to really connect: Mr. Incredible’s threatened masculinity, Elastigirl’s newly awakened independence and Violet’s awkward dating woes all streak by too quickly. But that limitation is somewhat mitigated by the warmth of the voice performances. Samuel L. Jackson returns as the Incredibles’ uber-cool, crime-fighting buddy — he has less to do than in the 2004 film, but he still adds some extra swagger. As for Hunter, she’s a delight as a woman relishing her chance to be the hero — and not just in her own family.

SOURCE: Screen Daily

Ultimately, what Bird has created with "Incredibles 2" is an expected sequel to the first film, but also one that doesn't quite feel fully worthy of it -- something that rewards our wait, but doesn't necessarily amplify or transcend what made its predecessor so fun, exciting, and unique. Of course, maybe that's "enough" when so many sequels drop off precipitously in quality; but after a movie called "Incredibles" lives up to its name and then some, it's hard for "No, Really, It's Very Good" not to feel a like at least a little bit of a disappointment.

SOURCE: Moviefone
 


Perhaps most intriguingly, “Incredibles 2” is both pop-culture eye candy and a sly critique of it — albeit one delivered in the form of the bad guy, who rails against the mediation of screens as a poor substitute for unfiltered life experience. I don’t need to tell you who wins here, but it’s refreshing to see a movie sequel that can question its own existence, even as it revels in it. (A movie theater marquee advertises “Dementia 113” in the background of one shot, a sight gag that evokes the kind of throwaway joke you might see on “The Simpsons,” for which Bird once worked.) It’s been a long time coming for “Incredibles 2,” but the punchline is worth the setup.

SOURCE: Washington Post

I won’t spoil any of the setpieces but will note the existence of one showstopper: a slapstick sequence in which baby Jack-Jack is provoked by a raccoon (they are provocative creatures) into exercising his powers for the first time. As with everything else, Bird’s timing makes even what’s expected galvanically funny and what’s unexpected volcanically so. Can we dare to hope that the studio people behind the current plague of superhero movies will watch The Incredibles 2 and feel a twitch of shame? Their films are largely set inside computers anyway, so why not take their cues from Bird and streamline the storytelling, distill the action to its lyrical essence, and give us one great climactic sequence instead of the usual shambolic five? May they learn from the Bird to fly high!

SOURCE: Vulture

Incredibles 2 is a movie that lavishes attention on the details but loses sight of the whole, where you can’t see the forest for the meticulously rendered trees. What sticks in the mind isn’t its half-hearted conflicts but the design of the Parrs’ loaner mansion, which looks like James Mason’s hideout from North by Northwest, or the way the roof of a massive hydrofoil opens up to disgorge a hidden jet plane. Perhaps that’s like coming out of a four-star meal and raving about the tablecloths, but the world needs nice tablecloths, too.

SOURCE: Slate

 


As before, one of the key creative contributions here is the super score by Michael Giacchino. Essentially unknown at the time, the composer put himself on the map with his work on the first entry and he's been one of the busiest soundtrack tunesmiths in Hollywood ever since. At 118 minutes, the new film is just three minutes longer than the original.

SOURCE: The Hollywood Reporter

Superheroes have made us lazy. Maybe not as citizens, but as consumers and creators. They’ve become too automatic. And yet, these stories have so much to offer, and the solution isn’t to just stop telling them. The solution is to make character-driven blockbusters that use spectacle in order to help us better see ourselves. To take a mesmerized people and transform their screens into lenses and mirrors. To put the human and the super in conversation, and listen to what they have to say about each other. “Incredibles 2” doesn’t make that look easy, but that’s part of what makes it great. [B+]

SOURCE: Indie Wire

The final act’s revelations confuse and deflate much of this. What we learn about the villain is unconvincing, and the smash-up climax races backward from the earlier complexity, devolving to the family-together fun of the first Incredibles. The thrills are always there, and you can enjoy the jazzy Michael Giacchino score, the sweet stay-at-home-Dad gags. But don’t let the dazzle fool you. Bird’s made the weirdest Pixar movie ever, revolutionary and retro, an anti-authoritarian ode to good parenting. [B+]

SOURCE: Entertainment Weekly
 


Brad Bird’s strong script and direction elevate this animated adventure to new heights. Instead of trying to copy or parody the superhero films of the past 14 years, Incredibles 2 embraces what made its first outing so memorable: The Parr family and their willingness to work together in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds. [9.2/10]

SOURCE: IGN

Pixar has now made 20 feature films over 23 years; seven of those films, including Incredibles 2, are sequels or prequels. (Their next film, opening in June 2019, is Toy Story 4. Sigh.) The expectations this studio places on itself, and that audiences place upon them, are sky-high, to a possibly damaging point. (This specific idea is mirrored in Bob’s character arc, and is more compelling than his frustration about Helen getting the glory.) The Incredibles is one of Pixar’s, and Brad Bird’s, best films. Bird is a good enough filmmaker that Incredibles 2 doesn’t come close to matching his personal best. But it’s a more exciting film than the last spate of Pixar sequels, both thrilling and thought-provoking. [8/10]

SOURCE: Slash Film

 For those not quite as predisposed to grouchiness—or those more inclined to embrace ethical egoism—Incredibles 2 ought to offer everything you liked about the first movie, with a bit of the surprise stripped away. This sequel has a richer, more intricate gleam than its predecessor—14 years have done a lot for animation technology—but it still whizzes and glides across the same architecture. It’s a blast—and then it’s gone.

SOURCE: Vanity Fair
 


"Incredibles 2" does what superior sequels should: it takes its already-established world and characters in fresh, organic directions while devoting more time to develop the key relationships viewers fell in love with the first time around. Take away their superpowers and the Parr family could be any family, one with ups and downs, struggles and victories, and ultimately love. At nearly two full hours, the third act might have been improved with a tighter edit, and one moment involving Lucius' wife, never physically seen but heard as a nagging offscreen voice, strikes as tone-deaf in a way the rest of the film is anything but. While the identity of mind-control villain Screenslaver will likely not come as a huge surprise, it scarcely matters since the picture far transcends this twist, its success or failure never hinging upon a single climactic reveal. "Incredibles 2" is another winner for Pixar, seemingly effortless in its savvy and confidence, excitement and heart. [3/4]

SOURCE: TheFilmFile

These are situations that are relatable, with characters that we care about. With Helen’s serendipitously sketched storyline perfect for the #MeToo era. She’s a woman who finally feels empowered, making great strides not only for herself but for everyone. (It’s this inclusiveness and sensitivity that should finally put all of Bird’s critics, who erroneously make him out to be an Ayn Rand-ian objectivist, to bed.) The uniqueness of these characters and the ways in which we care about them make “Incredibles 2” the best superhero movie of the summer. It would have been a relief if, 14 years later, “Incredibles 2” had simply met expectations. Instead, it exceeds them. [A]

SOURCE: The Playlist

One of the joys of an Incredibles movie is that, even as you're following this single family on its superhero adventure, you're also seeing all of these little details letting you know just how much bigger the world is, so it's interesting to know that even with all of that detail there are still things that get left out. There are heroes shown in literally one shot of the first movie who could have entire backstories and sets of adventures we haven't seen yet, and Bird keeps up that sense of a fully lived-in world with the sequel.

SOURCE: Syfy

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