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BRAVO for "BRAVE" in Bonny Scotland - My Review

Updated on July 8, 2012

Brave Poster - Disney Pixar

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Go and see BRAVE!

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A movie to watch again and again!

BRAVE is a rip-roaring romp.

Directors: Mark Andrews & Brenda Chapman

Produced by: Katherine Sarafian

Music: Patrick Doyle

Story: Brenda Chapman

Voice Cast:

Kelly MacDonald: Princess Merida

Emma Thompson: Queen Elinor

Billy Connolly: King Fergus

Kevin McKidd: Lord MacGuffin and young MacGuffin

Craig Ferguson: Lord Macintosh

Robbie Coltrane: Lord Dingwall

Julie Walters: the Witch

John Ratzenberger: Gordon, a guard

Patrick Doyle: Martin, a guard

Peigi Barker: young Merida

Steven Cree: young Macintosh

Callum O'Neill: Wee Dingwall

Sally Kinghorn and Eilidh Fraser as Maudie

Steve Purcell: the Crow

Running time: 93 minutes

© Copyright with all rights reserved. This writing may not be copied, republished, reproduced or disseminated in any form; without the express written approval of the author.

Brave Trailer (no, not brave little tailor!)

Scotland the Brave.

Like a refreshing breeze, Brave sweeps through the audience and leaves one quite breathless. I was totally delighted with this movie from beginning to end. Disney’s Pixar has done it again. As much as I enjoyed “UP,” I enjoyed “Brave” and possibly even more. How fabulous to find a new fairy tale, much like a legend of Bonny Scotland. If the makers of this movie wanted to showcase the Scottish Highlands in all its grandeur, they certainly did. They went over there to study Scotland at its finest and their artistic renderings are stunning, with incredible attention to detail and rich textured palette, the film is a visual delight. Not since I saw “Fantasia” when I was but a girl, have I felt as excited about a new animated movie as I do about “Brave.” This movie contains all the elements of comedy, drama, adventure and even a little romance. I laughed from beginning to end and even cried in the sad parts. Please be aware, dear Reader, that there are some rather frightening bits which will likely scare young children.

Merida is BRAVE!

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Och, the Ayes have it!

The story feels like an old folktale and has all the ingredients of Disney’s finest animated feature films. The faces of all the characters are extremely expressive – it’s all there in the eyes. Och, it’s all in the Ayes! Medieval Scotland comes to life in all its haunting beauty and with the soaring spirit and robust energy of the clans. We meet Princess Merida who has beautiful unruly red locks and a faint spattering of freckles over her nose. The princess is being tutored by her elegant mother, Queen Elinor, of very royal bearing, but our fiery princess wants to do things her own way. Her father, King Fergus of Clan DunBroch, a larger-than-life character, presents his little daughter with a birthday present – her very own bow. As she practices with it, the family encounters a giant demon bear called Mor’du. While Elinor and Merida escape, Fergus and his men fight the bear off, at the cost of Fergus’ left leg.

Harris, Hubert and Hamish

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Teenage Merida and her triplet brothers

Time elapses and we next meet a teenaged Merida and her identical, adorable, red-tousle-haired triplet brothers: Harris, Hubert, and Hamish. The princess has become a talented and awesomely accurate archer, and she and her three little brothers, get up to all sorts of high jinks. Merida is set on doing things her own way. Headstrong and smart, she loves best to ride wildly into the beauty of Scotland, her untameable hair flying in the wind as she enjoys her freedom. A tomboy at heart, she just wants to be herself. From blades of grass to the expansive lush and verdant beauty of the changing Scottish landscape, the action and adventure which follows is captured with remarkable artistry. Astride her faithful Clydesdale horse, Angus, which is as free-spirited as its rider, Merida, races over bonny hills and through misty dales as she explores to her heart’s content on her one day off when she can do things her own way.

Merida loves being unrestricted

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Clan Leaders

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Highland Games - a meeting of the Clans

Queen Elinor calls a meeting of the clans as it is time for a first-born of one of the clans, to win the hand of the Princess in marriage. Clans Dingwall, Macintosh, and MacGuffingather to participate in Highland games which include piping, drumming, dancing, kilts, the Scottish hammer throw and the caber toss. After witnessing the rather disappointing efforts of her three suitors as they try to win the archery competition, the princess declares that she will compete for her own hand as she represents the fourth clan. Try as she might, Queen Elinor cannot get Merida to behave like a future queen. An exasperated and iron-willed Queen insists that Merida take her duties seriously and with dignity, which results in a rift created by our strong-willed heroine – a rift that will take dedicated determination to heal.

Feisty competition

Merida and Elinor need to listen to one another

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Where will fate lead you?

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Be careful what you wish for...

After a wild ride, Merida finds herself inside a circle of standing stones and suddenly, strange things begin to happen. Merida hears and sees blue-sighing will-‘o-the-wisps which light her way, as effectively as an aircraft landing strip, and our heroine embarks on a journey that leads her to an old woman’s lair. The old woman has the ability to whittle wood into creative sculptures as she whips up a brew that will grant Merida a wish that may change everything, and thus, we discover that the old woman is, in fact, a witch. Merida’s wish is to change her mother, but she gets a lot more than she bargained for. Merida is given a message: A pride-torn bond must be repaired.

Can she reverse the spell?

As Elinor pays the price for Merida’s stubborn ways, Merida must help her mother escape from the castle, with the help of the triplets. Then she has to figure out a way to escape the clutches of Mor’du and save her mother from the witch’s spell. As a result of Merida’s actions, the clans are on the verge of war. Merida boldly suggests that it is time for her and her suitors to choose their own partners. Her suitors think this is a very good idea and wholeheartedly agree. After much confusion about Mor’du, and his ultimate demise, Merida proclaims her love for her mother, thinking that she is too late to break the spell.

I will leave the ending as a question mark for you, dear Reader, as I never like to spoil the plot. What I will say is that this is a fairy tale in the best of traditions, filled with magic and danger, and a fabulous musical score. In the words of Patrick Doyle: "I employed many classic Scottish dance rhythms such as reels, jigs, and strathspeys, which not only serve the action but keep it authentic." Brave will undoubtedly take its well-earned place amongst the best of the classics.

Who's brave enough to wear a kilt?

Box office

As of July 1, 2012, the film had earned $137,156,457 in North America, and $26,800,000 in other countries, for a worldwide total of $163,956,457

Scotland the Brave - the Real Inspiration!

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    • Suelynn profile image
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      Suelynn 5 years ago from Manitoba, Canada

      Hi Conservative Lady: Thank you so much for your fabulous comments - you made my day! :) I so enjoyed the movie, I would love to see it again. ENJOY when you go and come back and let me know what you thought.... :)

    • Conservative Lady profile image

      Sheila 5 years ago from Surprise Arizona - formerly resided in Washington State

      Suelynn, wow I am so impressed by the quality of your hub - this is a beautiful review of Brave, I cannot wait to see this one and I hadn't even heard of it before reading this review. Terrific!

    • Suelynn profile image
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      Suelynn 5 years ago from Manitoba, Canada

      Hi RedElf: You will undoubtedly love it... I look forward to viewing it again. :) It is SO beautiful, I actually lost myself in it - I love it when that happens. Thanks so much for your comments and your votes - they are so greatly appreciated. :)

    • RedElf profile image

      RedElf 5 years ago from Canada

      We have this one on our "must see" list, and will probably add it to the collection once it come out on DVD. Looks like a beautifully made movie, and great fun. Rated up and awesome

    • Suelynn profile image
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      Suelynn 5 years ago from Manitoba, Canada

      Pixar certainly delivers fabulous movies, Vitallani. Thanks so much for voting. :)

    • Vitallani profile image

      Bryony Harrison 5 years ago from UK

      I still voted for Toy Story, but I'm glad to see A Bug's Life the now. I sill think they're earliest films are the best.

    • Suelynn profile image
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      Suelynn 5 years ago from Manitoba, Canada

      You will enjoy it without a doubt! I agree that prices are high these days... and heaven forbid you want to buy refreshments!! Pixar is keeping up with the times, I would say and women are empowered. Ya gotta vote, Vitallani, I included your fave for you. :)

    • Vitallani profile image

      Bryony Harrison 5 years ago from UK

      Great. :)

      Although I want to see the film, I plan to wait for the DVD to come out. Cinema prices are so high these days, I rarely go. It does look like a good film though; it's interesting that Pixar is doing a princess film.

    • Suelynn profile image
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      Suelynn 5 years ago from Manitoba, Canada

      "A Bug's Life" has been included in the poll, so voters will have to vote again as it was reset to zero. :)

    • Suelynn profile image
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      Suelynn 5 years ago from Manitoba, Canada

      Hi Susan: I always love reading what you have to say. I can absolutely see you as Merida! Perfect fit. :) That's a good point you've made about the length of a movie and I must admit, the length of Brave is JUST RIGHT! Thank you for your kind comments and for forwarding to your Scottish friend. I appreciate your thumbs up. :)

      Hi Vitallani: Thank you for your kind comments. Actually, I made an effort not to include spoilers and thought I had done a fairly good job at not revealing too much about the plot... I would like to know what you think after you see the film. Point taken about "A Bug's Life" and I will include that one in the poll right now. :)

    • Vitallani profile image

      Bryony Harrison 5 years ago from UK

      A very thorough review, but it is so in-depth, I would recommend a spoiler warning.

      My favourite Pixar film is Toy Story, followed closely by A Bug's Life. You didn't put that on the poll *sniff*.

    • profile image

      Susan 5 years ago

      I am thrilled to see that this movie is 93 minutes. I am so tired of movies that are two and a half hours.... I am thinking of using that as my first yard stick when I am making choices of what to see.

      Eons ago, when I was a red head, I pictured myself like this active and curious lass. I do love her hair!

      As a rule I am not fond of recent animated films. Because of your recommendation, and what I have read here, I will see this movie. I am forwarding to my dearest Scottish friend. Can't wait to hear her comments.

      Thumbs up!

    • Suelynn profile image
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      Suelynn 5 years ago from Manitoba, Canada

      Woohooo, Deb.... you GO girl! :))))

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      This review makes me want to see it.

    • Suelynn profile image
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      Suelynn 5 years ago from Manitoba, Canada

      Hi Docmo: Thanks so much for your lovely comments - I couldn't agree more about Pixar. Brave will release in the UK in mid-August and you are in for a treat! I can only imagine that living in the United Kingdom must give you an added thrill as Scotland is just a hop, skip and a jump away. I appreciate your feedback, as always, Docmo. I look forward to hearing your impressions after you see the movie. There is a short animated offering called La Luna before the movie which is delightful! You can view a clip here: http://youtu.be/V7doTbvCA2I

    • Docmo profile image

      Mohan Kumar 5 years ago from UK

      Can't wait to see this- it is not yet out in UK. I'm an ardent Pixar fan and they really do rock. Incredible stories, great visuals, sense of humor, always touching the right emotional core and outstanding creativity. Thanks for reminding us how great Pixar are again, Susan. This is a beautifully designed hub- worthy of Pixar themselves.

    • Suelynn profile image
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      Suelynn 5 years ago from Manitoba, Canada

      Hi Teaches12345: Thank you so much for your comments. I'm curious why you wouldn't see the movie... and I'm grateful that you took the time to read and comment. :)

      TToombs08: Woohooo, you have a treat in store for you, Terrye. If I lived nearby, I'd join you! :) Thanks so much for your kind feedback. I'm smiling at the screen!

    • TToombs08 profile image

      Terrye Toombs 5 years ago from Somewhere between Heaven and Hell without a road map.

      I can't WAIT to go see this movie next week! :) Great review, Sue! :) VUM!

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 5 years ago

      wow, this is a great review on the movie. I probably will not go to see it, but for those who have interest information, you have it all here to see.

    • Suelynn profile image
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      Suelynn 5 years ago from Manitoba, Canada

      Hi Sunshine625: What a perfect birthday present! LOL, I totally agree with you about bears... kinda reminds me of Goldilocks, but the Scottish version! :)

      Mejohnson: You're in for a real treat. Thank you for commenting.

      Janine Huldie: YAY! You will love it and I daresay I will see it again too! :) Thanks for your very kind comments, shares and votes. :)

      fpherj48: I thank you for your kind comments. One of the nice things about having grandchildren is that grandparents get to do the fun stuff with them. The boys will love it! ENJOY! Thanks for your lovely comments and votes. :)

    • fpherj48 profile image

      Paula 5 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      Suelynn....I thank you for this great review of BRAVE. I am now looking forward to seeing this with my grandsons.......in fact, you've done such a fabulous job, here.....Grandma may go even if the boys don't !! UP++

    • Janine Huldie profile image

      Janine Huldie 5 years ago from New York, New York

      We are dying to see Pixar's newest movie (we have seen all the rest so far) and this review totally left me wanting to see it even more. Thank you for an awesome review of a movie truly worthy of it. Will be sharing and voting up of course.

    • mejohnson profile image

      mejohnson 5 years ago

      I wanted to see this movie before & this review confirmed it. Great hub.

    • Sunshine625 profile image

      Linda Bilyeu 5 years ago from Orlando, FL

      Excellent review! I went to see Brave on my birthday and what a great gift that was! Merida was adorable and I loved her flowing red locks of hair. She was feisty and funny! I appreciate bears a lot more now, but I'd still rather not bump into one! :)

    • Suelynn profile image
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      Suelynn 5 years ago from Manitoba, Canada

      Hey Josh3418: Thank you so much.... your enthusiasm is my enthusiasm. I appreciate your lovely comments more than I can say - thank you... and the votes are great! UP, up and awayyyyy....enjoy the movie, I say! ;)

      Hunbbel Meer: Woohoooo! You won't be sorry - I LOVED this film. You're in for a treat! Thank you so much for your wonderful comments.

      Hi Jools99: You surely must not miss the movie, even if it is on DVD, but you may miss some of the grandeur of the scenery and action if you don't see it on the big screen. That being said, however, the voices are absolutely incredible. There are few accents as pretty as the Scottish in my humble opinion, and this added to the wonderful musical score, makes for an aural feast of Medieval proportions. I'm so glad I switched you on to seeing BRAVE! Thanks so much for your votes and shares. :)

    • Jools99 profile image

      Jools99 5 years ago from North-East UK

      Sue, great movie review - I would probably never go to see this at the cinema but will certainly watch out for it on DVD. Looks like some great voice talent is involvement as well and the animations look amazing. The mountain photo you feature is incredibly detailed. Your enthusiasm really comes through in this review, you made me want to see it now :o)

      Voted up and shared.

    • Hunbbel Meer profile image

      Syed Hunbbel Meer 5 years ago from Karachi, Pakistan.

      Excellent review. I wasn't up for this movie until now, but now I'm going to watch this.

      The layout, in-depth analysis, pictures, everything is perfect in your hub. Thumbs up!

    • josh3418 profile image

      Joshua Zerbini 5 years ago from Pennsylvania

      Sue, I love, love, love, your movie reviews! They are so informative, the writing, the pictures, the clips! I can't wait to see this movie, it looks so cute and adorable! I love Disney movies and voted UP as my favorit on your poll. But, maye Brave will take the top! Thanks for this awesome review, it only adds to my excitement to watch it! Many votes Sue, and sharing!