I am absolutely, madly, totally in love with Pixar and Disney’s Brave. I wish I owned it already and cannot wait to have it in my hand to play over and over again—both with my daughter and without! Some people, however, have less than stellar reviews for the movie, particularly for a Pixar film.
Roger Ebert noted that it wasn’t that groundbreaking (whatever), but other people are even more miffed. Some men are claiming that the male characters are mere caricatures, while many are saying it’s too violent or sexual. Some are even saying that Princess Merida is gay just because she didn’t want to get married (yet; she keeps saying she’s “not ready”); the Brave Wikipedia page was even edited to reflect this view on opening day, though it was also quickly edited.
Take it from a movie-loving mom; here are these myths debunked. (Spoilers are included.)
Brave is groundbreaking!
It’s got a leading girl, it’s development is completely different than any other Pixar film, it focuses on POSITIVE family relationships (and they’re all even alive!), particularly with a mother, which is super rare… I really could go on about how groundbreaking and needed this movie is.
Brave’s men are awesome!
They are funny! Some are handsome, but most aren’t (like laugh—haha, just kidding, guys!); some are smart, some are shy, and most of them fight. Yes, there are scenes where they are treated like caricatures (such as when they are chasing after something that’s not there, or when they fight) but fellas, welcome to the club! That’s how women are in every animated film, pretty much ever (save for Miyazaki and Don Bluth movies), up until this point. And they were not the main characters, so you’re not going to have as much development there anyway. This movie is about a girl and her mom and their relationship, not romance—so get over the fact that there’s no wedding at the end.
Brave’s not that violent or sexual.
It’s especially not when compared with other Pixar movies. The violence here is only centered around a demon bear, who does not kill any people in this movie. It can be a bit scary; I would not take a four-year-old to see it (but I wouldn’t take him or her to see Toy Story 3 or Up, either, for the same reason). As far as sexuality, there’s a scene where the king pinches the queen’s butt. Big hoopty doo! I wish kids could see that kind of affection between people in love rather than being told “No public displays of affection!” all of the time, even if they hug their friends! And yes, there are two parts where you are going to see the butts of men or boys. It’s purely funny and not gross, I promise, and it’s very fast. Kids love that stuff! Naked butts used to be comedic fodder all of the time in cartoons.