Brave is set in the mystical Scottish Highlands, where Mérida is the princess of a kingdom ruled by King Fergus and Queen Elinor. An unruly daughter and an accomplished archer, Mérida one day defies a sacred custom of the land and inadvertently brings turmoil to the kingdom. In an attempt to set things right, Mérida seeks out an eccentric old Wise Woman and is granted an ill-fated wish. Also figuring into Mérida’s quest — and serving as comic relief — are the kingdom’s three lords: the enormous Lord MacGuffin, the surly Lord Macintosh, and the disagreeable Lord Dingwall.
I wasn't entirely sure about this one, because I was worried it would be like many, where the trailers have all the good stuff and the rest of the movie stinks. BUT! That was not the case with this wonderful and super funny movie, in which we have a girl who doesn't want to just be a typical girl and princess in the dark ages, and in her dreams and efforts to change her life and find adventure, she causes what is a very cute and fun, and very funny catastrophe of events, in which we have some of the most hilarious animated characters in years all running amok and with some of the funniest and most charming scenes in a cartoon movie in a long time. This one is great for kids, families and adults, who like me, love their cartoons!
Summary: pleasant enough experience for kids and adults alike. Could it have been better? Absolutely. The writing was not as clever as we have come to expect from our animation films. It was no Toy Story or Shrek. However, in between the beautiful Irish lilt in female voices to the parody of Celtic menfolk, the lessons in communication between parent and child are worthy of time and money. Little girls will laugh and some will even shed a tear before the film ends, but the big "boon" will be for Moms. More than a few Mothers will get an all too rare "I love You Mom" from their tween girl(s) and toddlers toward the film's end sequence. That alone is worth the price of admission.
I find it hard to believe that so many thought that this movie fell short. I laughed hysterically every five minutes though out the entire film. If you have not seen Brave, Go See It! If you have seen it and thought that Pixar was just being safe, I recommend that you watch it again but this time...clear your mind, don't expect the greatest movie ever made, and watch it as a kid would watch it. If you do that, you will find as I did, that this IS probably the greatest animated film ever made! Thankyou and go see thus film!
In today's world, with the exception of a few pathetic, Paleolithic countries, women are champions of their fate; "captains of their souls". Women shine as CEOs, CFOs, heads of state, professionals on equal plane with their male counterparts; gone are the shackles of prehistoric, nonsensical dictates; no longer confined to two rooms or behind a Purdah, women are free, free to follow their whims, instincts, desires.
"Brave" dedicated to the memory of Steve Jobs is an animated film imbued with pungently powerful metaphors and lessons meaningful for all ages. "Brave" is fun, captivating and entertaining for "little" and "big" folks, equably.
Pixar gifts us "Merida" a ferocious flame that no retardant could suppress; she is fire, igniting the sparks on the Fourth of July, May Day, Diwali, Festival of Lights; she blisters the screen with flaming, whirling, twirling tresses; she rides wantonly, with intrepid abandonment, bareback; her arrows pierce the accurate center of every target; she is tireless, eats like a stevedore, and is a princess. A princess, that refuses the role, her loving mother, tries to cast her in; she is intransigent, recalcitrant and sets up the age old ubiquitous mother/daughter dilemma. Herein lies a love story, a provocative narrative of two generations clashing, warring opinions, wishes that disastrously come to fruition.
This fantastical and "brave" tale about miscommunication, mayhem and magic gone awry, resonates with a sage, discerning, simple message: travails of the world could be salvaged, thwarted if parties listened, without roadblocks, prejudices or boundaries to the verbalized thoughts of one's advisory, whether familial, governmental, personal; words have curative, antidotal, alchemical powers; Merida and her mother are transformed and endow the audience a relevant, eloquent, satisfying "happy ending".
First let me preface my review with this. Overall I enjoyed Brave and it had some great moments. However I expected a lot more from this movie.
The movie starts off really well with a backstory of Merida and her family. We see the joy and strife that the family shares and we are really torn by the decisions Merida's mother Elinor must make for her daughter for whats best for the realm and Merida's desire for independence. Merida's archery is a symbolization of this strife between them. It's this clash that really drives the movie and sets a great tone all the way up to where Elinor throws Merida's bow into the fire.
And then the movie seems to take a nosedive. It splits off and instead of leading to a resolution of the strife between her and her mother, it becomes a disjointed trek to fix her mothers comical predicament where the resolution of their strife just happens. There are a couple of great moments, but we lost so much of what the first half of the movie led up to. Merida's archery skills are almost forgotten. The final confrontation in the movie isn't even resolved by Merida, but but Elinor, and it's really for a resolution of a briefly inserted backstory.
I really expected more from Pixar and Disney, but Brave is still a movie worth watching.
A "Brave" Review
My family of three went to see an early screening of the new Disney movie, "Brave" yesterday, so I thought I would write a quick "mommy" review of the movie.
Disney definitely breaks the standard "Disney Princess" mold with this movie as Princess Merida is a fun, outgoing and wild girl that for once is not in search for the love of a prince. The characters in the movie are entertaining and I loved the way that the Scottish culture comes out in the movie. I found myself wishing for more music though, which is one of the things that I truly love about past Disney movies. I would compare this movie more with "Shrek" than a movie like "Tangled."
As to the age of the kids that would like this movie I would have to say maybe 5 years old and up. The movie is not quite engaging enough for very young viewers, which was a little disapointing for our three year old. There were parts of the movie that our daughter enjoyed, but for the most part this is a more serious Disney movie with great life lessons for older viewers and not quite engaging enough for younger viewers attention spans. There are also several quite scary scenes that frightened younger viewers in the audience and made them cry, so be forewarned of this if you are bringing children under the age of five years old.
I've always been a big fan of Disney movies so on a Five Star scale I would rate this a 4 **** star movie. It's definitely not a favorite, but I give it four stars for the relationship that build between Merida and her mother. I think this offers a great lesson to appreciate your family and truely listen to eachothers needs and concerns.