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The Incredibles: The Power of Family
By Kyle Jane Heskett
When watching Disney movies, it is easy to take them lightly and enjoy them for pure entertainment value. Let’s face it, they are entertaining. But several Disney films actually have great symbolism and meaning. In my opinion, one of the best displays of this can be found in 2004, The Incredibles. When I first sat down to watch the film with my husband, I thought it was just like any other superhero movie. Superheroes are cool. They save lives. The end. To be honest, I liked it, but I didn’t love it. It was my husband who pointed out to me the amazing symbolism of the characters, which has caused me to appreciate it more.
The film centers on the power of family its ability to work together, despite each member’s differences. After being forced to live a normal life due to the disbanding of superheroes, Mr. Incredible, known to the civilian world as Bob Parr, and his wife Elastigirl, known as Helen, live in the suburbs raising their three children. Mr. Incredible, the father of the family, often feels the pressure to provide and keep everyone safe. That is why his superpower is super-strength. Mrs. Incredible, or Elastigirl, is the one who wears many hats in the family. She cooks, she cleans, she takes care of the children, she gives advice, she’s nurturing, she has to “stretch” herself in all different directions. Her superpower is body elasticity. The oldest daughter, Violet, is a typical teenager. She’s often awkward and shy, wanting to protect herself. Her superpower is invisibility and force fields. Dash is Violet’s younger brother. He is a growing boy with lots of energy. He can often seem reckless. His superhero power is super-speed. And then there’s the baby of the family, Jack Jack. His exact skill is not yet known, much like anyone who is that young. Each member of the family has their unique abilities, or their superpower’s so to speak. But not just one person can save the day. It is the whole family working together that makes the difference.
So what makes you unique? What is your gift? Despite the fact that we don’t have superpowers, we still have amazing things about us. When I look at those around me, I try to appreciate each and every person for what makes them different. The Incredibles is a great reminder to me that God has created each person unlike any other.
“But as it is, God arranged the members in the body, each one of them, as he chose. If all were a single member, where would the body be? As it is, there are many parts, yet one body. If one member suffers, all suffer together; if one member is honored, all rejoice together…Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it. And God has appointed in the church first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then gifts of healing, helping, administrating, and various kinds of tongues. Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Do all work miracles? Do all possess gifts of healing? Do all speak with tongues? Do all interpret?” 1 Corinthians 12:18-20, 26-30 (ESV).
In the verses above, the church is recognized as a family of many different kinds of people, but each member is essential. As believers, we each have a role to play in the Kingdom of God that was meant for us. It is when we embrace each other as family that we can learn to work together.