L. Neil Smith's
Number 300, December 12, 2004

Bill of Rights Day December 15

An Incredible Movie Review
by (who else?) your kindly Kaptain
(a.k.a. Manuel Miles)


Exclusive to TLE

Yes, shipmates, this week's entry in The Kaptain's Log is an actual movie review. It's little wonder that you, my vast legions of devoted readers, nearly worship me. And that hint brings us to the film in question, "The Incredibles"...

Pixar films has triumphed yet again! If you liked Toy Story, Monsters Inc. and Finding Nemo, you're going to love this one. It was written, directed, and even partly voiced by Mr Brad Bird, the animation genius who wrote and directed the 1985 animated classic, The Family Dog, among others. (You Spielberg fans will remember this one as an "episode" of his otherwise non-animated horror TV show, Amazing Stories.) I have rarely laughed so hard in my adult life as I did when I saw that truly "amazing" cartoon... until now, that is.

The character of "E Mode" alone is worth the price of admission. Heck, the animated "short" which preceded it ("Bounding"), was worth the price of admission! And as a special bonus to Libertarians, all manner of sacred cows get barbecued throughout the movie. If you have a family, or have ever been a member of one, you'll have trouble keeping in your seat as you rock with laughter, even if you're not an animation-loving, Libertarian super-hero whose secret identity is "Bob Wallace". (And man, is he ever going to like this one!)

Mr Bird's CGI characters are, as another online reviewer pointed out, more "real" in most ways than the non-computer-generated ones in The Usual Holiday Fare this year. In The Incredibles, we see a middle-aged American man's efforts to deal with the usual problems which plague white male suburbanites: a neurotic teenage daughter, a hyperactive elementary school terrorist of a son (who has somehow managed to stay out of reach of the Ritalin pushers), a mind-numbing job in a tiny office cubicle, a wife who worships "normality", rush hour traffic and, what was it now... oh, yes—the need to protect his Secret Identity as a retired super-hero while saving the world from Evil in spite of Official Government Disapproval.

All the characters, no matter how minor, are so unerringly written, animated, and voiced that you will be constantly "recognising" them. I suspect that several are based on actual public personas, but I may be wrong. Still, that hangdog-faced government bureaucrat, the maniac school teacher, and the insurance company executive look mighty familiar... Maybe it's just that this society mass produces such types; maybe it's that they are public figures thinly disguised; I'm too old and senile to know for sure (the baby is named "Jack-Jack Parr"...), but it doesn't matter; you'll laugh so hard at everything they say and do that you'll miss half of it the first time you see this incredible movie, anyway. (My advice: see it twice.)

RATING: Out of a possible ten gun broadside, this old sea dog fires all ten plus a brace of pistols. See it, or turn in your membership card in the human race. "Don't make me beg!"


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