Pixar, I Love You. Brave is Awesome.

by Amy Kraft on June 22, 2012


It was 25 minutes into Up when I decided I was mad at Pixar. Since then, I loved Toy Story 3, it didn’t do anything to assuage my anger at Pixar not having a girl lead in any of their amazing movies. I recently vented again on GeekMom about it, warning Pixar that Brave had better be good. Girls deserved to have an awesome, beautifully animated heroine to look up to, and Merida looked like a promising prospect.

When I got home from seeing Up, I made this promise to Pixar:

If you take the risk and give us a heroine the likes of Ellie or Elastigirl for a WHOLE MOVIE, I will take my daughter to see it no fewer than 3 times. I’ll even shell out the extra dough for 3-D, so hungry am I for you to make this movie. You can take that to the bank. PS – Don’t think we’re letting you off the hook with a princess movie. There’s no risk in that.

Yes, Merida is a princess. As my friend Ryan rightly pointed out on Facebook, “The free-thinking-break-the-mold princess? Haven’t we seen this before?” Indeed, as the movie began I couldn’t help but think that the movie was following the exact plot of Cornelia Funke’s The Princess Knight. But I love that book, so I was ready to roll with it. It was all perfectly enjoyable, and then some magic happened. Both literal on-screen magic and a more general sense of movie magic. Merida wishes to change her fate, and the magic she uses has an effect that I won’t spoil for you, but it takes the movie somewhere totally unexpected. Your average princess movie involves a love story, right? Brave has an amazing love story, but it’s not Merida and a prince. It’s about the love between her and her mom. 

Boys… where are you going? Come back! I know you’re not going to be scared away by that, because you’re much more sophisticated than marketers give you credit for, right? Just in case your sophistication is not enough to get you to buy a ticket, I’ll tell you that Brave is also hilarious. Some of the biggest laughs come with people getting hurt, particularly in a large brawl scene, so if you don’t find that kind of thing hilarious you might not agree. There’s also tons of action and adventure and archery and wild animals. Some of those animals might scare the littlest ones, but Olive didn’t flinch. Anyone who can handle the mean dogs in Up can handle Brave.

You might want to sit down for this last part, because I’m about to lay the superlatives on pretty thick.

Brave features the most beautiful animation of hair and eyes ever. The Scotland stuff is not bad either. And I saw this in 3D, people. They didn’t do any real gimmicks with the 3D, just made the animation look ridiculously beautiful.

Brave has the best on-screen mother/daughter relationship. Granted, my love of this movie is blocking out my memory of every other movie I’ve ever seen, but I still believe this to be true.

… get ready for this next one, it’s a biggie…

Brave is the best Pixar movie ever. I don’t need movie memory for this one because this week I ranked my favorite Pixar movies as part of a GeekMom pollBrave is better than all of them. Better than Toy Story? Yes. Better than Wall-E? Yes. Nemo? Dude, did you read the first sentence? Yes!

… and finally…

Brave gets the coveted Media Macaroni Seal of Approval for being the categorical best. It kind of makes me wish I had a Palmes de’Macaroni to bestow.

Go see Brave and enjoy. Then see it again. And again. Let’s tell Pixar (and other movie makers) that there’s an audience for wonderfully crafted stories with great action and emotion that also happen to have a girl as the lead character.

Chaos Mandy June 22, 2012 at 6:05 am

It sounds amazing! I wish I could see it sooner than Sunday but I’m really looking forward to taking my daughter to see it.

Melissa Sarno June 22, 2012 at 10:15 am

Wow! I must see it now. And her hair…I know I’m supposed to be into her bravery and all that stuff…but her hair is sooooo beautiful.

Tommy June 22, 2012 at 4:18 pm

Just got back from seeing Brave and it was awesome! Pixar really redeemed themselves after the stinky turd that was Cars 2.

Linus June 22, 2012 at 11:33 pm

It was ok. The visual was awesome, story ok, and well…snore. But I’m 54. It didn’t suck. That’s the best I’ve come to expect from Pixar. Really.

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