And yeah, there will be TV stuff also, for the shows I really like (Community, Parks and Rec, 30 Rock, Arrested Development, Sherlock, Doctor Who, Joss Whedon things, and probably some other stuff I'm not thinking of)
Starting May 2013: I'm attempting to watch all 52 of Disney's animated feature films. You can click on "The Disney Quest!" link above to see my progress :-)
Directed by: Mark Andrews, Brenda Chapman
Synopsis: In medieval Scotland, the young princess Merida hates following tradition and having to learn the lady-like behavior her mother insists she’ll need to help rule the kingdom. Rather than spend her time trying on dresses and learning table etiquette, she would rather spend time roaming the countryside and honing her archery skills. After defying custom and refusing to marry, she seeks out a spell to change her fate, but ends up placing a curse on her mother which may affect the fate of the entire kingdom instead.
Review: Pixar has set a pretty high standard for itself, with recent hits (both critically and commercially) including “Up” and “Wall-E,” which are known for being as entertaining as they are heartfelt, and even thought-provoking. Their latest movie, “Brave,” isn’t as memorable or deep as most of their other films, but it’s still a very cute and entertaining movie with some good lessons for kids.
“Brave” might not reach Pixar’s highest standards, but there’s still a lot I respected about this movie. For one, even though it’s a bit predictable, it tries to steer clear of certain fairy tale cliches. The most obvious of these is that, while the movie is all about a princess, unlike any old school Disney movie, the plot isn’t about romantic love. Rather, it’s a sweet story about a spirited daughter and her conservative mother, and how they learn to see eye to eye despite their differences. It might not be a totally new concept, but as far as animated fairy tales go, I thought it was refreshing to see a princess who has goals in life outside of finding herself a prince.
While I did appreciate the film’s simplicity, I think this same element is what keeps it from reaching the same level of previous Pixar movies. Unlike most other Pixar movies, “Brave” doesn’t really have the witty script or memorable characters that we expect from this studio. To be fair, Merida and her mother, the two main characters, are great, and definitely the kind of idols I think kids should have in their movies. I’m referring more to the side characters, the majority of whom just feel like caricatures. And rather than have any really funny or memorable dialogues, I think the humor in this one is more based on sight gags and situational humor.
And really, there’s nothing wrong with any of that, in my opinion. “Brave” might not have the maturity of a film like “Up,” but then again, I don’t think it’s really trying to. This one is content to tell us an old fashioned Disney-style fairy tale with a simple lesson about respect and the consequences of pride. It tells the story in a way that should be as entertaining for adults as it is for kids.
If you’re a big fan of Pixar and Disney like I am, my advice would be that you don’t go into this expecting an “Up,” go expecting the kinds of Disney movies you watched as a kid, and I’m sure you’ll enjoy it.
My score: 7.5/10
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