July 21, 2012
Movie Review: Brave
So one afternoon when we all got off work, we drove into town to see it. It was well worth the trip, and we loved it.
As a nice change of pace from the romance movies flooding the market today, Brave is actually a lovely mother-daughter story. Of course, I was a bit edgy about that too at first, considering Pixar's less-than-glorious track record of botching parent-child stories (case in point: Finding Nemo). However, I was surprised and delighted to discover that in Brave, they actually did a good job handling the development and struggles in Merida's relationship with her mother. The way they executed the final turning point had me ready to stand up and cheer, simply because I was so happy to finally see a Disney movie with a moral of humility and admitting when you're wrong.
The music was wonderful (you can't really go wrong with bagpipes and fiddles), the animation was incredible, and the story itself was delightfully entertaining - a great way to get my Scottish blood flowing.
A few things to be aware of:
One, I wouldn't show this movie to very young children. Mordu, the giant bear Merida faces, would be pretty scary for a little kid.
Two, there is some brief partial nudity at one point, when all the men get stranded on the roof of the castle and tie their kilts together as a rope to get down. I admire their resourcefulness, but still... yeah.
Three, one of the castle maids is rather well endowed by nature, shall we say, and wears a very low-cut dress that makes the issue rather difficult to ignore.
Four, magic plays a key role in the story. Merida sees will o' the wisps, meets a witch, asks for a spell to change her fate, etc. The lessons Merida learns over the course of the story subtly emphasize that magic is what got her into trouble in the first place, which I appreciated seeing, but the presence of magic as such might be a problem for some families.
Aside from that, as I said before, this was a delightful movie that I definitely plan on seeing again. And for anyone of Scottish heritage who plans on seeing this movie in the future, be warned: you might be surprised by how vividly some of your own personality traits show up in various characters. ; )