“Our culture raises little girls to understand that their bodies are not their own.”
I saw Brave in 3D over the weekend at the fierce insistence of my mother. We settled into our seats in the middle row and half way through the previews of one Disney movie after another I leaned over and whispered, “It just hit me this is a kiddie movie.”
Despite being a “kiddie movie,” Brave absolutely delivers. It had me from the opening scene, where this tornado of livid red hair flounces about amidst an onslaught of childish giggles. Merida, the lead character, is as lovable as any Disney princess. She comes of age in medieval Scotland, where tradition and legend are closely intertwined. Her mother spends a considerable amount of time and energy preparing a rather disinterested Merida for her destiny: royal marriage. Merida, on the other hand, would rather ride horses, climb mountains, and sharpen her archery skills. So, when the time comes for her to make good on her destiny Merida puts up an admirable fight. In fact, in her ingenuity she manages to turn a difficult situation into a total disaster!
Brave has all the necessary ingredients – a fitting soundtrack, an engaging setting, and ripe dialogue. The storyline is a glorious combination of theme and originality. It takes quite a few surprising turns with enough poignant moments to make you smile and cry. Not to mention hanging on to the edge of your seat. If you can relate at all to parent-child angst (most of us can) you will enjoy this movie. Personally, I loved that while each of the characters maintained their distinct personalities not one of them was less strong than the other. Merida’s father – this big oaf of a man is an obvious embodiment of bravery and strength but surprise – his wife and daughter are equally matched! Disney can definitely add Brave to its growing list of movies promoting female empowerment. An all-around great movie.