The Incredibles (2004)

(In theaters, November 2004) Pixar’s continued good run of excellent films continues unabated with this latest entry, most assuredly one of the best superhero films ever made. Combining sharp satire with a healthy respect for non-sappy family values, The Incredibles does everything it can with the elements it chooses to cover. A far funnier take on Watchmen‘s theme of disgraced superheroes, writer/director Brad Bird’s latest masterpiece (five years after The Iron Giant) is simultaneously one of funniest comedies of the year and one of the most awe-inspiring action film of 2004. Best of all, however, is Pixar’s patented tendency to refine the elements of its films until perfection is attained: Hence the non-stop delight of one of the film’s best sequence, in which an elastic woman is stuck in-between three (or four?) different doors at once. The action sequences are similarly awe-inspiring, with buzzsaw chases across an island paradise and a fantastic set-piece in which superheroes battle a robot in downtown Metropolis. Whew! But even with Pixar’s technical savvy and sophistication, it’s the script that shines brightly, with simple gags and fantastic characters such as Edna E Mode, a costume designer borrowing equally from Doctor Ruth and Christian Dior. Despite some initial lengths, rarely has a film stepped so assuredly on my Year’s best Top-10 list.

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