Incredibles 2 (2018)

Incredibles 2

Fighting crime is hard enough without having a baby to watch over.

It should come as very little surprise that it took fourteen years to bring the Parr family back to the big screen in Incredibles 2. Director and writer Brad Bird knew he had characters that are rivaled by few in the Disney Universe (not just Pixar), so he took his time. The result is a sequel that, while it does not live up to the original, still is passable as family fun for all ages.

The movie picks up right where we left off in the first film. The Parr family is chasing after the Underminer (Pixar voice man John Ratzenberger). After his escape, the family is under legal trouble again, and must go back into hiding. That all changes when they are approached by super hero enthusiast Winston Deavor (Bob Odenkirk) and his sister Evelyn (Catherine Keener). They tell of a plan of how Mr. Incredible (Craig T. Nelson), Elastigirl (Holly Hunter) and Frozone (Samuel L. Jackson) can wear hidden cameras to show the hero point of view, not the point of view from the politicians. The choice is eventually made that Elastigirl will be the best bet for the public since she destroys the least amount of property.

This leaves Bob alone with his kids as a stay at home dad (though Deavor has given them a new house with amazing features). This is the plot where the film adds the most laughs, as Bob is unaware at first of his kids’ individual problems. Dash (Huck Milner) needs help with homework (“Why would they change math?!”). Violet (Sarah Vowell) is upset because her crush from the first film Tony (Michael Bird, son of Brad Bird) had his memory erased of her and does not know who she is. Then of course, there is Jack-Jack (Eli Fucile) who is discovering his new powers along with his family. It is so desperate that Bob even has to go to Edna (Brad Bird) for help (while in his monster form, Jack-Jack is also voiced by Nicholas Bird, the other son of Brad Bird).

Meanwhile, Elastigirl is on the hunt for a new villain named Screenslaver, who does have secrets of his own (I did guess at who the identity of the Screenslaver was, but I will still not reveal it). His powers are able technical in that he can entrance people on the TV screen. Eventually, this tech is transmitted to goggles.

There are other minor characters that don’t get as much screen time, but are fun to have around anyway. These are the super heroes who have also been in hiding, such as Voyd (Sophia Bush), Helectrix (Phil LaMarr), and others with their own unique powers.

Parents, the film may be the first time I have heard some swearing in a Disney/Pixar film (very minor ones like Hell and Crap). Aside from that, it is safe to say that any kid would be fine with this film if they saw the original.

The movie is fun, but far from the (pardon the pun) incredible first film. It does lack the originality and uniqueness from the first film, and does not nearly have as good a villain (though few can compare to Syndrome). Still, that should not stop you from having a great time with your family.

Though I would advise you to tell your kids that fighting a racoon may not be the best idea.

 

Overall: Three and a Half Stars ***1/2

 

The Hateful Eight (2015)

The Hateful Eight

Jennifer Jason Leigh and Kurt Russell, just two of “The Hateful Eight”.

 

One of the worst things people can do as movie goers is shy away from a Tarantino flick just because it is violent (that is going to be violent goes without saying).

Althought The Hateful Eight was almost not made (more on that later), it is still classic QT. It contains the usual amount of violence, and (most importantly) sharp, wonderful dialogue that no one does better. The film stars Tarantino regular Samuel L. Jackson as Major Marquis Warren. He stumbles upon bounty hunter John Ruth (an excellent Kurt Russell) on his way to the city of Red Rock, where he will deliver murderer Daisy Domergue (Jennifer Jason Leigh, equally fantastic). A snowstorm delays them to a cabin filled with others including Bob (Demian Bichir), Oswaldo Mobray (Tim Roth,) Chris Mannix (Walton Goggins), Joe Gage (Michael Madsen) and Sandy Smithers (Bruce Dern).

My favorite thing about Tarantino is that I never know what will ever happen next. This means I never know who lives and who dies. I obviously won’t go further into the story, except to say that not every character is what they seem to be. There is also a part here played by Channing Tatum, which proves (along with 2014’s Foxcatcher) that he can be a great actor if given the right script).

Parents, the fact that this is Quentin Tarintino means that the film will deserve its R rating (though the only sexual thing is a character showing that he was forced to give oral sex and that he was fully nude while doing it.) So yes, 17 and up. Still, for those who can handle a Tarantino flick, the film is well worth it (It is not his best, but then how could he top a film like Pulp Fiction?)

I close by saying why the film was almost not made. Tarantino’s script was leaked online, and therefore did not want to make it. Fortunatly, he was convinced to do so. To those people who like to find out about movies before they are released, I say the following: Why? Why not wait for the surprise in the first place? Can you at least stop ruining it for others?

Overall: Four Stars ****