Summary: Here is a review of Incredibles 2, review of Disney’s Father’s Day gift to fathers. There are spoilers for details that most adults in the audience will easily predict.
The Incredibles 2 is Disney’s gift to fathers for Father’s Day. For the first 30 minutes it runs as a standard sitcom, cute family clashing at home. The next 30 minutes combines two standard Hollywood themes: flashing from Dad the Doofus to Super-Mom. The last 45 minutes shows a superhero battle, as the guy and girl unite as battle buddies (Hollywood can show romance at home and work, but not functional modern marriages). The first hour passed slowly; the long fight at the end was terrific.
The CGI and actors voices are excellent. The plot is slap-dash (e.g., The Villain’s Master Plan Makes No Sense), as with most superhero films. The villain is probably right. Perhaps the production team’s creative energy all goes into the CGI.
To understand the plot better, watch while imagining the roles reversed (in ancient days that was the method taught to detect propaganda). Mr. Incredible cannot handle the children. We see him unshaved, screaming at the kids, before he breaks down and whines about the difficulty of filling a woman’s shoes. He is strong but not very bright. His daughter lectures him about the rights and dignity of women. Most of the guys are doofuses, such as the villain’s sibling and father).
Elastigirl steps out from the shadow of Mr. Incredible, resuming her career as a solo heroine. She is omnicompetent and uniformly awesome. Also, women are the only voices of authority in the film (even as teenagers). Guys’ commands and advice are ignored. Elastigirl is the hottest 40+ year-old feminist icon ever to wear a Playboy bunny suit. She is usually drawn in shadows or against dark backgrounds to mute this.
You have seen this plot a thousand times. It is skillful socialist realism art, preparing our children for a future dominated by women. Expect more to come from Disney.
“I’m holding out hope for an Incredibles 3 where Violet and Elastigirl team up against a baddie who goes by The Patriarchy.”
— Sara Stewart in the NY Post.
It is a nice film for kids, if you don’t mind showing your children yet another story of Dad as doofus. Today’s children have grown up seeing these gender roles and accept them as normal.
I suggest that instead of going to the theater you buy the Jonny Quest cartoons (1964). The producers give a subtle pointer to this superior work in a scene in which Flash is watching episode 8, “The Robot Spy.” The animation is excellent for its time. The plots are better than those of most cartoons today. Jonny’s father (Dr. Benton Quest) and their secret service agent protector (Race Bannon) are both great models for young men.
Fathers today in America
See yesterday’s post: Secrets about Father’s Day.
“Holidays reveal the inner life of a society. Especially Father’s Day, at the center of key changes being made to America. This analysis of that mutated holiday is an edited compilation of Dalrock’s brilliant articles.”
Even more important, see For Father’s Day: revolutionary words that will forever change the American family.
Update: about Mr. Incredible as a doofus
In comments at Reddit some say that Mr. Dad is not shown as a doofus. Although he screws up with Violet, he masters 4th grade math (eventually) and get a woman’s help with Jack-Jack. This is nuts. He was shown as stressed to the max by doing what the average woman does every day. He breaks down, a large angry unshaven guy screaming at his kids. That he was eventually able to master 4th grade math is not an endorsement.
He was shown in both the original and this as a big strong doofus. In the first he was angry at his boss and beat him up – a classic big thug unable to controls himself, beating up a smaller guy. Prisons are filled with guys like that. He routinely breaks things in daily life. As for his poor parenting skills, in the film he had 14 years of experience as a Dad.
Mrs. Mom was just as good as Mr. Dad as a hero – but achieved her results with much less destruction. More broadly, she is drawn as much smarter than her not-too-bright husband.
I was a Scout leader for 15 years, and saw scores of Dads. We had to assess their suitability to leaders, assistant leaders, or not useful. I saw some worse Dads than Mr. Incredible (mostly emotionally unsuited), but never any one so incompetent.
For More Information
Ideas! For shopping ideas, see my recommended books and films at Amazon.
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- The coming crash of marriage: why, and what’s next.
Trailer for Incredibles 2