Will (Angarano), the teenage son of legends The Commander (Russell) and Jetstream (Preston), is sent to Sky High, a school for superheroes except he has no powers of his own. While trying to live up to his familys reputation, hes also faced with suc
Stop us if you’ve heard this one before: an awkward adolescent with prominent parents goes to a school for specially gifted children in order to hone his special powers. That’s the premise of Sky High, which at first glance looks scarily like a Harry Potter/Incredibles hybrid. Fortunately, though, the film’s smart enough to develop its own identity.
Director Mike Mitchell cannily combines the staples of high-school comedy (bullies, romantic triangles, tyrannical teachers) with something altogether more fantastical — and it’s a blend that works well. The kids’ quirks are more original than your average superhero’s — witness the lass who can shapeshift into a purple-striped guinea pig, or the kid who melts into a puddle on cue.
But it’s the grown-up co-stars who steal the film. Kurt Russell is hilarious as the superhero dad who’s incapable of acknowledging any of his son’s shortcomings, while there’s a great little turn from Bruce Campbell as a sports teacher with a nice line in bellowing.
As derivative as it all may be, it’s still superb entertainment — and in a kids’-film market dominated by computer animation, it’s even better to see a live-action movie making its mark.
Sky High has the potential to become your favourite film ever if youre eight. But even if youre older than that, chances are youll love it too.