Brave: Review

Posted 21/11/2012

If your little sister could use an arrow-slinging female role model, but Katniss Everdeen is a little too hard-core for her, ‘Brave’ is the movie to take her to. However, with its amazingly sophisticated visuals, the latest Pixar spectacular is definitely not just a film for kids.

Our heroine, Merida (the voice of Kelly Macdonald), is an adventurous, headstrong teenage princess who, like most other teenage girls, is continually butting heads with her mother. But when Queen Elinor (Emma Thompson) informs the princess that noblemen’s sons will be vying for her hand in marriage, Merida rebels in a big way. After a rash decision backfires, she must undo a magic spell to save her family and restore peace to the kingdom.

‘Brave’ is full of lively and funny vocal performances, including Billy Connolly as bombastic King Fergus and Julie Walters as a witch who's crafty in both senses of the word. And the animation is absolutely spectacular, with amazingly photorealistic vistas that lovingly evoke Scotland. Every graphic detail is vivid, like Merida’s voluminous mane of red hair, which bounces so fluidly in 3D, it’s practically a character in the film.

As a story, ‘Brave’ doesn’t feel quite as fresh and original as some of Pixar’s best work, although it is refreshing to see a fairytale portray a daughter’s relationship with a loving mother rather than an evil stepmother. Visually, however, the film ranks right up there among the studio’s masterpieces.

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