14 years later and we’re catching up with the Incredibles about 30 seconds after we last left them. Dash is competing in sports (sort of), Violet is getting her flirt on, Bob and Helen are happily entwined and no one is the wiser to Jack-Jack’s powers. Then, The Underminer shows up, and having had a taste of saving the world, the whole family rushes off to save the day. Minor mistakes are made, and it doesn’t go well. Their protection is canceled, their house is still destroyed and they have no immediate job prospects. Enter the eccentric billionaires that get the plot rolling — Winston Deavor and his sister Evelyn Deavor. The pair run a major tech and communications company and they want to bring Supers back out into the light — starting with ElastiGirl to get some good PR going behind the idea.
And so, making the tiniest deviation from the original, Incredibles 2 finds ElastiGirl getting back into her prime while Mr. Incredible stays home with the kiddos. The usual “Dad’s in charge” logic applies here and things fall apart quickly on the homefront, but ElastiGirl’s return to the spotlight is a smashing success. So, we follow her new adventures and Bob’s misadventures.
This set-up places the comedy pretty firmly on the home turf and the action squarely on Helen’s shoulders. And it all works pretty well. Incredibles 2 is splashy and fun, with mostly successful nods to the present cultural moment of brilliant women getting their due. The villain leaves something to be desired and the answers to the film’s central mystery are tipped far too soon, but there are two standout sequences that send those gripes to hide in the corner.
The first is what would be a staggering action set-piece in a live film, but is here just a neat bit of animation that finds ElastiGirl chasing down a runaway bullet train. The second unites fan favorites Edna Mode and Jack-Jack for the most uproarious five minutes or so of the entire picture. (Honestly, that’s the spinoff the world needs.)
Incredibles 2 doesn’t break any ground, but it also doesn’t disappoint, and in that, it was worth the long wait to see Pixar’s super family back on the big screen.