- "On November 5th, expect the incredible"
The Incredibles is the sixth Disney/Pixar feature film, produced by Pixar Animation Studios and released by Buena Vista Distribution in the US on November 5, 2004. The movie is about a family of superheroes.
The Incredibles is the first Pixar movie to feature an entirely human cast of characters. It was released in a two-disc DVD in the U.S. on March 15, 2005. According to the Internet Movie Database, it was the highest-selling DVD of 2005, with 17.18 million copies sold.
The film, and its video-game adaption, were both left with a cliff-hanger that a follow up video-game sequel was produced, The Incredibles: Rise of the Underminer. Besides the videogame sequel, a comic book series was also produced, which is being published by BOOM! Studios.
The film is set in a 60s-esque alternate universe where superheroes, also known to the public community as "Supers", are renowned and commended for their heroic deeds worldwide, allowing them the luxuries of a Golden Age. One particular superhero who truly lives in this age is the super-strong Mr. Incredible, engaged to the dexterious Elastigirl and best friends with the cryokinetic Frozone. While driving to his wedding with Elastigirl, Mr. Incredible experiences an otherwise routine day of fighting crime and saving lives, including rescuing a man from falling off a building and stopping a train from falling off its track (though, in a deleted scene, Syndrome says that it's against the law for supers to marry and have kids). In addition to confronting an infamous member of his rogues' gallery Bomb Voyage, Mr. Incredible must deal with the intrusion of his self-proclaimed #1 fan, Buddy Pine, who tries to impose himself as Mr. Incredible's sidekick, "IncrediBoy". Constantly frustrated by his presence, Mr. Incredible coldly rebuffs him each and every time he appears. After he gets married, Mr. Incredible faces a series of lawsuits: the man he saved from falling off a building was trying to commit suicide and is suing for the hinderance of such, while the victims of the train rescue are suing for the injuries they have sustained. These lawsuits have inspired people across the world to sue Supers everywhere for the "annoyances" they create while they do what they do normally. With the suits costing the government millions of dollars, the government sponsors a witness protection program in exchange for the promise to stop all superhero work, thus seeing the end of the Golden Age of Supers.
Fifteen years later, Mr. Incredible and Elastigirl have settled into relatively normal lives. Now known by their secret identities, Bob and Helen Parr, they have a house in the suburbs and are raising three kids: 13-year-old daughter Violet, 10-year-old son Dashiell ("Dash"), and infant son Jack-Jack. Like their parents, Violet and Dash have their own powers; Violet can turn invisible and create force fields, while Dash can run at breakneck speeds; it seems as if Jack-Jack is a normal baby without powers. Bob is overweight and frustrated with the drudgery of his job as a claims adjuster for a corrupt insurance company called Insuracare and secretly helps deserving clients to find loopholes to get their payments. He dreams of returning back to his glory days of superheroism, going so far as to moonlight as a crimefighter by listening to a police scanner every Wednesdays, with his friend Frozone, known now as Lucius Best, claiming to their wives that they're going bowling, though Lucius actually wants to go. They have discovered that another former superhero named Gazerbeam has had trouble adjusting to civilian life like Bob does, and is now missing. They go to save people from a burning building but the heat is to much for Lucius to put out with his powers. They accidentally run into the nearby jewelry store, where the security guard assumes they are robbers; Lucius freezes him with the water from the nearby dispenser. When Helen finds out about Bob's nighttime escapades, it causes an argument; Bob hates having to hide their gifts, and wants to return to the heroics of the old days, while Helen is concerned about keeping the family together and not having to start over again by going into hiding in a brand new location.
Eventually Mr. Huph, Bob's miserly boss, suspects Bob is helping clients and reprimands him. During the lecture, Bob notices a person being mugged in the street. Mr. Huph stops Bob from going to the victim's aid, threatening to fire him, and the mugger escapes. When Huph smugly begins lecturing again, Bob, furious with his boss's insensitivity, grabs him by the neck and hurls him through several office walls. Huph is hospitalized and Bob is fired. Normally the government agent and Bob's old friend Rick Dicker would cover such an incident by paying to keep the company quiet, relocating his family, and erasing memories of the incident, but since it is costing too much money for the government, Dicker can no longer help Bob. While Bob is trying to figure out how to tell Helen about his accident, Mirage, a mysterious agent, contacts him and offers highly-paid work: subduing a renegade robot, the Omnidroid 08, on Nomanisan, an uncharted volcanic island. Bob takes the assignment, telling Helen that he is attending a conference out of town, hiding both the loss of his job and the renewal of hero work. Bob defeats the Omnidroid, and with the hefty reward he begins to lead a much happier life with his family. However, he has slightly damaged his supersuit from the battle, and takes it to its designer, the flamboyant Edna Mode, for repairs. Edna also offers to create a brand-new suit for him and he accepts but, unbeknownst to him, she also creates suits for his entire family.
Two months later, Mirage calls Bob with a new assignment. Helen overhears the call, but does not realize its full implications or content and begins to have suspicions of an affair, though she nervously keeps it to herself. When Bob returns to the island, he discovers it is a trap as he is ambushed and defeated by an improved version of the Omnidroid prototype robot, Omnidroid v.X9. He discovers that his anonymous employer is Buddy Pine, having become a psychotic and incredibly wealthy weapons designer named Syndrome. Embittered by constant rejection from his former idol, he made a fortune in high-tech weapons technology. He then invented the Omnidroid, a robot designed to kill Supers. Bob manages to escape from Syndrome and discovers Gazerbeam's remains. He infiltrates Syndrome's base and gets beyond the wall of lava to his main computer. Typing in the password "Kronos", he had access to all of Syndrome's files. He learns that Syndrome has killed many of his superhero friends in the process of developing the Omnidroid (though many survived or haven't been located), and is now planning on unleashing the robot into the city of Metroville where it will cause mass destruction, with only Syndrome able to stop it.
Back at home, Helen notices that Bob's old super suit has recently been repaired. She visits Edna and learns that he has resumed superhero work behind her back. With a call to Insuracare she also realizes that Bob is no longer employed. Edna has also created super suits for Helen and the children, and advises her to take control of the situation. Helen activates the homing device Edna built into Bob's super suit, which inadvertently reveals his location to both her and Syndrome (who recaptures him). She heads for the island in a jet plane, on which Violet and Dash have stowed away, after leaving Jack-Jack at home with a babysitter, Kari. Syndrome, meanwhile, tortures Bob for information and launches a missile attack against Helen's airplane. Helen and the kids manage to escape unharmed, and swim to the island, though everyone on the island believes they are killed. Bob grabs Mirage and threatens to kill her unless Syndrome frees him; Syndrome calls this bluff, and Bob releases her unharmed, remaining Syndrome's prisoner. Mirage is furious at Syndrome for calling his bluff and says next time he gambles, he should bet his own life.
While Helen infiltrates Syndrome's base, the new and improved Omnidroid v.10 is launched on a rocket towards its target, Metroville. In Syndrome's base, a grateful Mirage secretly frees Bob just before Helen. The two superheroes rush to find their children, who are fighting off Syndrome’s henchmen. A battle ensues, wherein the family co-operates to defeat their attackers. However, Syndrome arrives and captures the Incredibles using his zero-point energy fields. Syndrome then explains his plan: to save Metroville from his own Omnidroid and thereby become a hero. He later intends to sell his gadgets to the world, making everyone super, for "when everyone is super, no one will be," impling that he may kill them off as well. He then leaves the Incredibles in an energy prison. Violet’s force fields allow them to escape, however. With Mirage’s help, they depart for the mainland after Syndrome with a rocket.
In Metroville, Syndrome attempts to stop the Omnidroid's destructive rampage, but the robot figures out the nature of his remote control and knocks him unconscious. The Incredibles and Frozone fight the robot. Bob realizes that the only way to defeat the Omnidroid is on the inside like he did the last time and has his family use the remote for one of the arms to activate it, allowing him to throw it at the robot, defeating it. The town applauds them for their achievements; the possibility of superheroes coming out of hiding is mentioned. Syndrome wakes up to find that the Incredibles have stolen his glory. Rick Dicker drives the Incredibles home, telling them that they've frozen Syndrome's assets. Helen listens to the messages left by Kari and learn that a replacement came over, so they hurry to their house only to find that Syndrome is kidnapping Jack-Jack, intending to raise him as his sidekick, in return for his future being taken away. As Syndrome attempts to fly up to his jet using his rocket boots, Jack-Jack suddenly reveals his super powers by transforming into fire, metal, and then an imp-like monster. Syndrome drops Jack-Jack, who is caught by Helen, and attempts to flee. Bob, however, remembers Edna's point of how supers have died thanks to their capes and hurls the family car into the jet; Syndrome is knocked into the turbine and his cape is caught in the engine and pulls him in. Violet then protects the family from the raining flames and debris as the jet explodes, much to the amazement of their young neighbor.
Three months later, the family is much happier; even Bob is content with their civilian life. Dash is running in a track meet; he carefully controls his use of super-speed and finishes in second place. Violet, who formerly felt alienated to the point of using her hair to hide her face, is found with her hair pulled back and successfully asking Tony Rydinger for a date to the movies. As they walk out of the sports complex, a new villain, The Underminer, rises from the ground and declares "war on peace and happiness.” The family members, including Jack-Jack, put on their masks and prepare to fight.
- Craig T. Nelson: Bob Parr (Mr. Incredible)
- Holly Hunter: Helen Parr (Elastigirl)
- Sarah Vowell: Violet Parr
- Spencer Fox: Dash Parr (The Dash)
- Jason Lee: Syndrome (Buddy Pine, A.K.A. "IncrediBoy")
- Brad Bird: Edna Mode
- Samuel L. Jackson: Frozone (Lucius Best)
- Elizabeth Peña: Mirage
- John Ratzenberger: The Underminer
- Wallace Shawn: Gilbert Huph
- Frank Thomas: Frank
- Ollie Johnston: Ollie
It was written and directed by Brad Bird, who was best known for directing the critically-acclaimed 2-D animated movie The Iron Giant, as well as being a director on the popular sitcom, The Simpsons. The Incredibles was originally developed as a traditionally-animated movie for Warner Bros., but after the studio shut down its animation division, Bird moved to Pixar and took the story with him. He and John Lasseter had been close friends since their days at CalArts.
The Incredibles received near-universal critical acclaim, receiving a 97% "Certified Fresh" rating at Rotten Tomatoes which made the movie the fifteenth greatest action film of all time and the only one of Top 20 with more than 100 reviews.
Despite concerns that the film would receive underwhelming results, the film grossed $70,467,623 in its opening weekend from 7,600 screens at 3,933 theaters, averaging $17,917 per theater or $9,272 per screen, the highest opening weekend gross for a Pixar film. However the record was later broken in 2010 by Toy Story 3.
The film won the Academy Award in 2005 for Best Animated Feature (the second Pixar feature film to do so) as well as Best Achievement in Sound Editing. It also received nominations for Best Original Screenplay (for writer/director Brad Bird) and Best Achievement in Sound, but did not win.
This film was rated PG, the first for a Pixar film. The second PG rated film was Up.
Associated short films
One Pixar tradition is to create trailers for their films that do not contain footage from the released film. Trailers for this film include:
- An out-of-shape Mr. Incredible struggles to get his belt on (hence, none of the Incredible Family members wear a belt in the film, and instead sport elastic waist straps).
In 2004, when Disney owned sequel rights, they announced plans to make sequels for The Incredibles and Finding Nemo without Pixar involvement. Those plans were subsequently scrapped. When Disney acquired Pixar in 2006, the expectation was that Pixar would create more sequels and bankable franchises (currently, Cars 2 and Monsters University are slated for release in 2011 and 2013). Director Brad Bird stated in 2007 that he's open to the idea of an Incredibles 2 if he comes up with an idea superior to the original film. Bird says, "I have pieces that I think are good, but I don't have them all together."
In 2011 John Lasseter confirmed there's actually no work on a sequel to The Incredibles. As he said: "We love [The Incredibles]. We love those characters and love that world too, but there's nothing in the works right now."