The Incredibles

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"Pull-yourself-together! 'What will you do?' Is this a question? You will show him you remember that he is Mr. Incredible, and you will remind him who you are. Well, you know where he is. Go, confront the problem. Fight! Win! [normal voice] And call me when you get back, darling. I enjoy our visits."

Edna Mode


The Incredibles
TheIncredibles.png

"NO CAPES!"

Edna Mode
Genre: Animated
Action
Comedy
Superhero
Family
Directed by: Brad Bird
Produced by: John Walker
Written by: Brad Bird
Starring: Craig T. Nelson
Holly Hunter
Sarah Vowell
Spencer Fox
Jason Lee
Samuel L. Jackson
Elizabeth Peña
Cinematography: Andrew Jimenez
Patrick Lin
Janet Lucroy
Music by: Michael Giacchino
Distributed by: Buena Vista Pictures Distribution
Release date: October 27, 2004 (BFI London Film Festival)
November 5, 2004 (United States)
Runtime: 115 minutes
Budget: $92–145 million
Box office: $631.6 million
Franchise: The Incredibles
Sequel: Incredibles 2

The Incredibles is a 2004 American computer-animated superhero film produced by Pixar Animation Studios and released by Walt Disney Pictures. Written and directed by Brad Bird, it stars the voices of Craig T. Nelson, Holly Hunter, Sarah Vowell, Spencer Fox, Jason Lee, Samuel L. Jackson, and Elizabeth Peña as Pixar's 6th feature film. Bird, who was Pixar's first outside director, developed the film as an extension of the 1960s comic books and spy films from his boyhood and personal family life. He pitched the film to Pixar after the box office disappointment of his first feature, The Iron Giant (1999), and carried over much of its staff to develop The Incredibles. The film premiered on October 27, 2004, at the BFI London Film Festival and had its general release in the United States on November 5, 2004. A sequel, Incredibles 2 was released on June 15, 2018.

Plot

In the alternate universe in 1962, married superheroes Mr. Incredible (Craig T. Nelson) and Elastigirl (Holly Hunter) are forced to assume mundane lives as Bob and Helen Parr after all super-powered activities have been banned by the government and live a quiet suburban life. While Mr. Incredible loves his wife and kids, he longs to return to a life of adventure, and he gets a chance when summoned to an island to battle an out-of-control robot. Soon, Mr. Incredible is in trouble, and it's up to his family to save him as well as Mr. Incredible's desire to help people draw the entire family into a battle with a former fan who now plots to wipe out all superheroes with his killer robot.

Why It's Incredible

  1. The film gives a unique idea twist on the superhero genre; rather than a film that's simply about explosions, lasers, and a superhero trying to save the world from a villain, it is a film about a family of superheroes that also goes in-depth with what they do when they're not superheroes.
  2. For a Pixar film, it deals with serious and mature subjects that weren't afraid to show them, such as midlife crisis, marital dysfunction, genocide, and child neglect. This is perhaps Pixar's most mature film along with Soul.
  3. The film has a great amount of heart and teaches us that overall family always comes first and makes life worth living.
  4. Great animation, per the norm for Pixar and 2004 standards by the time.
  5. Exciting and fast-paced action scenes, especially the intro scene.
  6. Fantastic writing and direction from Brad Bird, the director of Ratatouille and The Iron Giant, who would later return to direct it's successor.
  7. Great voice acting, namely Jason Lee (Syndrome), Craig T. Nelson (Mr. Incredible), Holly Hunter (Elastigirl), and even director Brad Bird (Edna Mode).
  8. Bob's desperate desire to be a superhero once more is an excellent allegory for someone going through a mid-life crisis.
    • At the same time, this shows the contrast in how Bob is more interested in being a hero to do good, unlike Syndrome who only wanted to be a hero for the fame and glory.
  9. The film has great and funny humor, even poking fun at how supervillains have the need to monologue and Mr. Incredible ejecting Buddy from his car when Buddy tries to join. There are also very funny quotes, such as "We're dead! We survived, but we're dead!" from Dash when the airplane was destroyed. Another good example of humor in the film is the famous "no capes" monologue by Edna Mode when Bob mentions Dynaguy about the capes.
    • The characters are likable and believable, notably the Parrs, who might be a superhero family but can also be very relatable as a normal family and Frozone.
  10. A fantastic score from Michael Giacchino, especially the theme song "The Glory Days" at the intro. It is the best James Bond score ever written. And then Michael Giacchino went and wrote it. Other examples included:
    • "Life's Incredible Again" packs in sheer joy and relaxation as Bob Parr's family life seems to look up immensely.
    • "Kronos Unveiled". Tense as always just like Mr. Incredible's desperation in researching about the Omnidroids, it builds up to the part where he's caught.
    • "Missile Lock". Everything in the orchestra is jam-packed with tension to simulate the desperation as the homing missiles soar toward Elastigirl and her kids.
    • "Lithe or Death" carries tunes and mysterious riffs reminiscent of the James Bond film series.
    • "The Incredits" is loaded with action, even after the whole film is done, boasting tons of motifs, shrill chords, and tensions keeping you at the edge of your seat.
  11. Many awesome dialogue, like:
    • "Coincidence? I think NOT!"
    • "Honey! WHERE! IS! MY! SUPER SUIT!"
    • "I'm not happy Bob. NOT. HAPPY."
    • "It's bigger! It's BADDER! Ladies and gentlemen, it's too much for Mr. Incredible!"
    • "Yeah, I got time."
  12. Syndrome is an excellent villain who's entertaining and has an interesting backstory, boosted by Jason Lee's voice performance. He's both very threatening and intimidating, but he can also be pretty funny. His death is also one of the most brutal Pixar deaths, as he gets caught in a turbine, and the way he gets caught is a decent reminder of Edna Mode's "no capes" policy.
    • His plan is also pretty intelligent, where he plans to sell advanced weapons to everyone, so (in his own words) when everyone is super, no one would be.
  13. The scene where Mr. Incredible logs into a secret computer and finds the truth about Syndrome's plan and how he's been using the omnidroid to murder every single superhero is extremely dark, tense, and suspenseful, mainly because of the score and lack of dialogue. It is arguably the darkest moment Pixar has ever created, along with the opening of Finding Nemo.
  14. The ending shows the scenes with the Underminer's reveal is great, and it makes the viewers wonder what happens next in the sequel.
  15. The moment when Frozone is looking for his supersuit is hilarious and has become a popular moment in the film.
  16. Edna Mode is a great supporting character, who is the best scene-stealer, voiced by the director Brad Bird.
  17. Jack-Jack gaining his powers is a surprising twist, and this is explored further in the DVD extra short Jack-Jack Attack and the successor.

Bad Qualities

  1. The scene where Edna points out to Bob the deaths of all the superheroes that had capes during the flashback in the year can be a bit dark for its target audience, even Syndrome's sucked into the plane's engine to death is also almost darker than the previous scene.
    • On the topic of Syndrome, while an excellent villain, he can be quite annoying at times.
  2. The scene where Elastigirl looks at her bottom in the mirror and sighs can be inappropriate for younger audiences.
    • On the island When Mr. Incredible was stretching and before he said showtime his blue suit became a two-piece suit also he was showing his stomach and belly button which is also inappropriate for a family film.
  3. Because of its age, the animation sometimes has rather washed-out colors, so overall it looks a little bit bland at times compared to its sequel (Although it's still amazing). Also, the character Tony Rydinger (who eventually starts a relationship with Violet at the end of the sequel) looks jarring here compared to his appearance in the Incredibles 2.
  4. Even though nearly the rest of the characters are likable, Gilbert Huph, although having a great voice actor (Wallace Shawn, who even voiced Rex from Toy Story), is an unlikable character due to him being such a selfish, inconsiderate, corrupt businessman and how he treats Bob, and his design looks ugly. Thankfully, he does get his comeuppance when Bob finds out he wouldn’t let him save a guy from being mugged and thrown into the walls by choking him (despite that resulting in Bob's dismissal from work job).

Reception

The Incredibles was universally acclaimed by critics and audiences. On review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, The Incredibles holds an approval rating of 97% based on 248 reviews, with an average rating of 8.4/10. The website's critical consensus reads, "Bringing loads of wit and tons of fun to the animated superhero genre, The Incredibles easily lives up to its name.". Another review aggregator, Metacritic, which assigns a weighted average score to reviews from mainstream critics, gave The Incredibles an average score of 90 out of 100 based on 41 critics, indicating "universal acclaim". Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film a rare average grade of "A+" on an A+ to F scale, making it Pixar's fourth film to receive this grade (after Toy Story 2, Monsters, Inc., and Finding Nemo).

Trivia

  • Out of all Pixar films, this is the first film to debut with Marvel Cinematic Universe composer, Michael Giacchino.
  • This is the first, and thus far only, Pixar movie not to feature a distinct appearance of the Pizza Planet truck. While making this movie, writer and director Brad Bird, who, at the time, was not familiar with the tradition of Pixar's Easter Eggs (since he hadn't worked on any Pixar films before this one, being not full-time with them), hadn't been thinking about the truck and was unsure if the animators had snuck it into the film (though he was able to know some other stuff like teasing Pixar's next film and having a character voiced by John Ratzenberger). Many people claim to have spotted it, but screencaps only show blurry, "Rorschach test" images, and nothing that can be identified as the Pizza Planet truck. Lee Unkrich recently dismissed what people believed to have spotted, and confirmed that the truck does not appear.
  • The Incredibles was the first Pixar movie where the music wasn't composed by a member of the Newman family. Instead, it was the first Pixar film to be composed by Michael Giacchino, who would later go on to compose other Pixar films as well
  • Lily Tomlin was originally considered for the role of Edna Mode, but later turned it down. After several failed attempts to cast Edna Mode, Bird took on her voice role himself. It was an extension of the Pixar custom of tapping in-house staff whose voices came across particularly well on scratch dialogue tracks.
  • Sarah Vowell was offered the role of Violet unexpectedly; Bird wanted to cast Vowell as Violet after hearing her voice on the National Public Radio program, This American Life. Bird stated that she was "perfect" for the part and immediately called her to offer her the role.
  • This makes the first Disney/Pixar film to receive a PG rating since it has a bit more violence compared to the other films that received a G rating.
  • The school teacher, Bernie Kropp, when finding out Dash is going to go free again at the office, says "This little rat is guilty!" The voice actor, Lou Romano, provided the voices for Snotrod in Cars (2006), and Linguini in Ratatouille (2007), where he rose to fame working with a rat.
  • Until The Good Dinosaur, this marks the last Pixar film to be released in November, the Pixar films that followed were commonly given a summer release because of the late Steve Jobs' plan, from a marketing point of view, of having any future Pixar film to be summer releases, with the home video sales taking place during the Holiday shopping season, hence why Cars, the first of this tradition, was moved from November of 2005 to June of 2006.
  • According to Finding Nemo, 2004 DVD, commentary, Syndrome was originally written as a minor character who assaults Bob and Helen at the beginning of the movie, only to die in an explosion that destroys the Parrs' house (in this version, the Smiths), but he was made the main antagonist because the filmmakers liked him more than the character of Xerek, who was intended to fulfill that role. The Snug character that Helen talks to on the phone in the final film was intended to fly Helen to Nomanisan Island and to die, but he was removed from that position when Lasseter suggested having Helen pilot the plane herself.
  • According to the newspaper article Bob reads during the dinner fight scene, the movie's "present" timeline takes place in 1962, making the beginning of the film take place around 1947.
  • It spawned the "Mr. Incredible Becoming Uncanny" meme, which features a concept art of his face from the sequel getting progressively eerier there were even some faces of people like Derrick Todd Lee in phase 4 or 5 with a sinister and dark aura and the background music getting creepier. There have been many variations of this meme, such as "Mr. Incredible Becoming Canny", "Mr. Incredible Becoming Old", "Mr. Incredible Becoming Evil", "Mr. Incredible Becoming Idiot", "Mr. Incredible Becoming Angry", etc. Also, due to how popular this meme is, they also made other templates but from No Mr Incredible like Super Idol, Chinese Eggman, Floppa, MrBeast, Dr. Livesey, Trollge, and even Rick Astley.

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