This summer's blockbuster offering from Pixar was Incredibles 2, the long-awaited sequel about a family of supers. Since the film recently became available on Blu-ray and Digital, more families are viewing the summer hit. One fan complained to Incredibles 2 director Brad Bird for the film's inclusion of a few swear words. Bird replied to the Twitter user's comment, starting a wider conversation about medium of animation. Here's what he said:
Twitter is an especially good platform to have debates, and Brad Bird started one regarding how animation is typically seen as exclusively for "kids" films when it's often intended for a broader audience. Since Incredibles 2 is a movie made under Disney's Pixar, many consider it a family-friendly film (and it is); but, as Bird challenges, it's not created only with children in mind.
The movie is an action film that discusses themes of gender roles, consumption of media, and family. It can be universally viewed by all ages, but doesn't need to be particularly sanitized of more mature content just because it's an animated movie.
Another Twitter user more recently shared a picture of the Incredibles 2 classification on the iTunes Store under genre of "Kids & Family." Brad Bird once again responded, explaining how he didn't agree with his film's current genre classification. In his opinion, Incredibles 2 should join films such as Avengers: Infinity War and Solo: A Star Wars Story in the Action & Adventure section. Take a look:
Brad Bird's thread of tweets brings up an interesting conflict many filmmakers of animated films often face. Animation has long been thought of as a medium made for kids, but it's just another way to create and present a story onscreen. The lines are further blurred through the lens of Disney/Pixar, which often markets their movies and characters to a younger audience -- even though much of their content isn't exclusively "for kids."
Take 2015's Inside Out. While the Pixar film can be enjoyed by kids as an imaginative way to learn about the mind and emotions, at its core, it's about the loss of innocence and childhood. That's a theme only adults can identify with, having experienced it themselves.
Director Guillermo Del Toro also chimed in to the Twitter conversation, explaining how animation is a medium, not a genre for only kids and families. It's an interesting debate, especially since studios often classify animated films as for kids when the filmmakers have created it for broader audiences. For a parent caught in between these two parties, it can be understandably confusing to show a movie to your children, thinking it's created just for them, and finding some more mature themes as you watch.
While you mull over these topics, check out this list of other movies that recently became available on Blu-ray, DVD, and Digital.