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Monday, June 25, 2012

Movie Thoughts: Brave

Posted by Irish in Movie Thoughts9 Comments

Title: Brave (Official site)
Tag Line: Change your fate.
Release Date: 22 June 2012
Rating: PG
Runtime: 100 min
Genres: Animation, Action, adventure 
Series or Standalone: Standalone 
Where Seen: Movie Theater
Production Company: Pixar Animation Studios, Walt Disney Pictures
Distributed By: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
Director(s): Mark Andrews, Brenda Chapman, Steve Purcell
Writer(s): Mark Andrews (screenplay), Steve Purcell (screenplay), Brenda Chapman (story & screenplay), Irene Mecchi (screenplay)
Stars: Kelly Macdonald, Billy Connolly and Emma Thompson

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Like many others I flocked to the theatre on Friday, 22 June 2012, in order to see Disney/Pixar’s newest film release Brave.  Prior to seeing the movie I had seen the US and Japanese versions of the trailer and both were so different in how they were cut that I really had no idea what to expect when I walked into this movie. What I got was a thoroughly non-traditional Disney princess movie that I loved.
Over the weekend I’ve seen a few posts on how Merida was a waste of a strong heroine or that she was a selfish brat and I can see how those conclusions were drawn. But just because someone doesn’t lead an army it doesn’t make her less strong. Merida wants to choose not only who she’ll marry but when. Her parents raised her to be a strong girl who thought for herself and while they may have indulged her with her riding and archery that doesn’t make her spoiled. 
What I loved about this movie is how it was more about the relationship between a mother and daughter than anything else. I liked how the focus of this story was about them repairing the gap that was between them and coming to an understand of who the other person was instead of trying to force the other to be who they wanted them to be. I liked how there was no romantic prince who came in to save the day (or who Merida saves.) I also liked how there was no random bursting into song as is common in a Disney film. Don’t get me wrong, I love Disney songs but it was nice that they broke from that tradition in this movie. 
I can see how people might have expected a grander adventure since so many Disney films involve the hero/heroine undertaking some sort of journey in order to overcome obstacles. But sometimes the biggest obstacle a person faces are the ones that they build themselves internally. Merida and her mother were at such opposite ends of the spectrum and while a lot of the journey happened at home and internally it was still a long and difficult journey that they each made. 
One thing that I was sad about was how little Merida’s brothers were used. I thought that they added lots of fun comedic bursts to the film and would have liked to see a little more of them. Overall though I loved the family dynamics of this movie. This movie made me laugh and it made my heart ache a little. As I said above, I really liked how it wasn’t your typical Disney movie. This is a movie that I would recommend and one that I will most likely be buying when its released on DVD so that I can watch it over and over again. 
Additional Note: The short film that showed before the movie, La Luna, was a huge disappointment to me. It started off cute but to be honest I was so confused by the whole point of it (until the end) and even then I was like…huh? It just didn’t mesh with me and I was bored by it all.

9 Responses to “Movie Thoughts: Brave”

  1. Keertana

    I love your movie thoughts Irish, especially as they so often mirror my own. I’m so glad you enjoyed this one and can’t wait to go see it myself. Brilliant review!(:

    ~Keertana
    Ivy Book Bindings

    • Irish

      I hope that you enjoy it when you see it! And thanks for your kind words on my review. It means a lot. =)

  2. Cat @ Beyond Books

    Your thoughts on Brave sound almost exactly like the conversation my husband & I had after we left the theatre. He even said “I love how it focused on the mother-daughter relationship, that’s not something that’s normally done in movies.”

    Although we both thought La Luna was beautiful and we ADORE how Pixar can tell a moving story without even using words. 😉 There we differ, but we’re on the same page as you for Brave!

    • Irish

      I do love how Pixar can tell a story without words but this one just didn’t resonate with me. But I am glad you liked it. =)

  3. Sarah Reads Too Much

    I just came home and I loved it! Finally a Disney movie where the happy ending doesn’t involve getting married. The happy ending was within Merida and a better relationship with her mom.

    Though all my 3 year old got out of it was “there was a BEAR in that movie”.

    • Irish

      haha that’s so cute.

      I too was also glad the happy ending was with herself. Such a good message to spread. =)

  4. QNPoohBear

    I finally saw the movie and I liked it too for the same reasons you did. I thought Merida was a great heroine. It’s too complicated and scary for a toddler but I’m going to get this one and save it for my sister’s daughter. I can see them having a relationship like Merida and Queen Eleanor.