Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Incredibles and the Right

Speaking of The Incredibles, we got—and are enjoying—the double DVD pictured in our current philm item and lo and behold! The conservatives turn out to have been right, more or less, in their take on the hit film. The DVD extras interview with director Brad Bird and particularly the alternative opening sequence do confirm that The Incredibles has a considered pro-family viewpoint, and Bird was trying to make a quietly radical film.

In the alternative opening, the Parrs are at a neighborhood barbecue and a career-type woman is disdainful of Helen Parr’s staying home with baby Violet. The lines given to Helen, says Bird, are inspired directly by the experience of Bird’s own wife, who postponed her career for a time to raise their first child. Helen offers a passionate defense of motherhood in its more traditional expression.

Of course, Bird is not a culture warrior (thank goodness), and so even for these deleted scenes the “war” metaphor is inappropriate. He comes across in the DVD interviews as a cheerful film enthusiast with a healthy amount of common sense (one wishes Hollywood had more of this type). Given the acrimony in the air these days, his strategy for setting out a story where one’s views will speak out for themselves calmly and naturally is most welcome.

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