Movie Review: Brave by Disney Pixar

Cast: (Voices of) Kelly Macdonald, Billy Connolly, Emma Thompson

Directors: Mark Andrews, Brenda Chapman

An ardent Pixar fan may find the studio’s latest release, Brave a tad disappointing. With movies like Up, Wall E and Toy Story, the studio’s latest release doesn’t match the standards set by its former movies. The movie is based on the premise of a feisty Scottish princess who falls for a spell of a devious witch and now has to undo it for the sake of her loved ones. Set in Scotland, Brave revolves around Merida, an aspiring archer who makes an innocent and reckless choice unleashing dangers. The basis of the story is clichéd. It’s old fashioned and it’s not something that is unheard of. Feels very Disney-like.

Younger kids won’t mind watching the movie but it might be a let down for the mature audience. The story lacks in terms of an adventure. Brave is Pixar’s first feature film which has an aggressive tomboy-ish female protagonist. The story has a beautiful prologue where the flaming red haired Scottish princess Merida gets an archery bow for her birthday, catches a glimpse of the electric blue will-o’-the-wisps, escapes with her mother when a ferocious bear attacks them as her father, King Fergus loses a leg fighting the beast. But after that, the movie jumps to her adolescence, an age where she is required to behave like a proper princess and choose her man.

While our princess who is a wild young woman finds the prospect of marriage a total loss of freedom, her mother Elinor believes otherwise. The story doesn’t pull up after the first half. After setting expectations of a wild adventure ahead, the script takes a sudden different turn; a turn that wouldn’t appeal to many viewers. With magical elements entering the story and a few moments that will make you chuckle, Brave seems like a movie that has been repeated numerous times before.  Brave somehow lacks those imaginative leaps seen in Pixar’s former projects. The movie explores themes like the mother-daughter relationship and how traditions are broken and altered to make way for the modern ones.

Having said so, the beauty of the movie Brave lies in its animation. It’s a visual delight with the beauty of Scotland and the lush forests.  Also, the film’s score composed by Patrick Doyle brings some of Scotland’s native flavour to the music.

P.S Don’t miss out on the brilliant short film, La Luna at the start of the movie.

- Esha Chanda

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