Brave has the plucky princess of a Scottish clan knocking heads with her controlling mom. They clash on everything from her being a tomboy to proper princessly etiquette. Merida is to marry the queen says. Dad -- of course -- is a pacifist. Not wanting to rock the boat, he goes along.
Besides, to not wed means war among the clans.
Merida is a dead shot with a bow and arrow, and can outshoot and outride her suitors. She doesn’t want to be a queen much less a princess. Typical teen, Merida just wants to do her own thing, on her on time and in her own way.
Mom is a major pain.
Her solution? Do a deal with a witch to change her mom’s mind. Nothing could be easier. Mom changes her mind, Merida is free. Like all witchy dealings, Merida doesn’t pay attention to the fine print. And the witch is a bit senile and couldn’t remember the spell’s catch.
Mom does change. But it’s not her mind that changes. It’s her body. She turns into something else. You think you can see where the plot of this is going but you’re wrong. To see that the movie has to go somewhere.
I’ll admit Brave wasn’t made for me. It is definitely a chick flick. Punched into the plot is the usual Disney moral and the film is absolutely gorgeous. Like all Disney/Pixar projects, this one has larger than life characters and they dot lavishly done, detailed sets. Add three-dimensions and like all of their endeavors, Brave is an art treasure.
Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Been there. Done that.
For a Disney/Pixar collaboration, this one is a disappointment. It’s not all that original -- and if you’ll forgive the pun -- not all that brave. The pre-release hype shows the promise of a fabulous action flick packed with adventure and comedy. Admittedly, the action sequences in Brave are exceptional. Merida with a bow and riding a horse is spectacular -- especially in 3D.
It’s the 10-zillion slow spots in between that suck the life out of the film.
Mr. Movie rating: 3 1/2 stars
Directors: Mark Andrews, Brenda Chapman, Steve Purcell
Voiced by: Kelly Macdonald, Billy Connolly, Emma Thompson, Robbie Coltrane, Craig Ferguson, John Ratzenberger
Rated PG for mature themes. It is playing at the Carmike 12, the Fairchild Cinemas 12 and Walla Walla Grand Cinemas.
5 stars to 4 1/2 stars: Must see on the big screen
4 stars to 3 1/2 stars: Good film, see it if it's your type of movie.
3 stars to 2 1/2 stars: Wait until it comes out on video.
2 stars to 1 star: Don't bother.
0 stars: Speaks for itself.