Cinema Review – Brave
Out this week, finally, in the UK is Pixar’s 13th Feature, BRAVE. But does it live up to the high standards of its predecessors? Scott takes a look
Brave is the first PIXAR’s first feature with a female protagonist, which feels strange when you think about it. Nevertheless the production company have done it again and completely smashed the Princess Stereotype. Merida is a defiant lass with fiery hair from the Scottish Highlands. Set in the 10th Century, BRAVE tells the tale of this strong-willed Princess and her fight to lead the life she wants to choose, and her mothers fight to make her a proper Princess.
Brave is not a bad film. In fact if it were to have been made by any other of the big Animation Studios we probably have been all applauding it. But as this is a PIXAR film we judge it with different eyes. Strangely where Brave falls down is actually PIXAR’s normal strong point, The Story. Annoyingly this is one thing that I cannot go into very much as I would be treading water in SPOILER territory. I won’t go into that now.
What I can say is this – when Merida finds out she is to be married off to keep peace in the land she freaks out and enlists the help of the local WITCH to change her fate. Things spiral out of control and Merida and her mother who have been at each others throats about how a Princess is supposed to behave are suddenly thrown together to…. this is where the problems start,
The second half feels too disjointed, full of little acts that do not tie together as well as they should. Where we should have a Mother and daughter quest we are just given more problems and issues. It feels like a story that hasn’t quite been developed properly, it knows where it wants to be at the end, and how to get there, but just can’t seem to connect the dots to make it to the finale.
It is not all bad though. The animation is truly stellar, one scene where Merida and her Mother go fishing is beautiful to watch. And the scarier moments are dark and terrifying, even for the parents. The voice acting is excellent throughout, Kelly Macdonald as Merida is very believable. The stand out is the ever brilliant Billy Connelly as Merida’s father, he is funny and heart warming and oblivious all at the same time.
Brave is aimed at a younger audience, which seems to make it’s scarier moments hit home all the more. The Demon Bear in the WOODS is particularly frightening, I had to hide my youngest from this a few times during the film. But more often than not a d great action sequence is followed by a stumbling, stutteringly paced section, which is such a shame for a PIXAR film.
I don’t want this to sound too negative. I am not saying it is a bad film by any means. Brave has many good points, but as a PIXAR feature it is sub standard.
BRAVE is released nationally in UK on 13th August
About The Author – Scott Lawlor
Chief Editor of FRC. A self confessed geek with an unhealthy thirst for all things Home Cinema. Whether it is the latest Action film or Subwoofer. Check out his home set up HERE
Have you see this film? Did you enjoy it? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section