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#61 BethR

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Posted 09 March 2012 - 10:27 PM

Just for the record. My thoughts were coming from the idea that the music didn't fit the trailer, not that I didn't like her song. Of course she probably would have composed the music for the film and not really the trailer, so even if the music doesn't have quite the right fit with the trailer this doesn't necessarily mean that it won't sound fine in the movie.

I like Julie better than Celtic Woman as well. She's a little more traditional it seems.


It's kind of cool that she went to the Hebrides and studied Gaelic Psalm singing. The Hebrides is a beautiful area, as can be seen here.

[url="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k3MzZgPBL3Q"]http://www.youtube.c...h?v=k3MzZgPBL3Q[/url]



It's interesting to note that the Carmina Gadelica (a book full of poetry and songs taken from mostly Hebridean people in the late 1800's) makes mention of Christian folk singing in different tones than normal. It's not widely known that the early medevial Catholic Church changed the tones of music from the tones that were used by the Hebrew people and the early church (I'm not sure why they changed it). There is some speculation that people in the Hebrides and possibly other fringe Gaelic areas of the British Isles had retained the old musical tones.

Interesting! Reminds me a lot of this documentary about shape-note singing or "Sacred Harp" singing (described as a "lost tonal tribe"):
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YHUfHNEZDPc

Sorry to highjack the thread. We have discussed this film, Awake My Soul: The Story of the Sacred Harp, on A&F previously. It's glorious.

#62 Tyler

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Posted 26 April 2012 - 09:22 AM

New trailer. I'd say it looks better than the earlier ones, but I'm still not too excited.



#63 Anders

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Posted 26 April 2012 - 09:58 AM

New trailer. I'd say it looks better than the earlier ones, but I'm still not too excited.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=icasShc9MGo


I think some of the animation in this looks fantastic. Even though the story of the unhappy princess seems pretty standard at this point, there's enough there for me to think that there will be some surprises (remembering that the original title was the more evocative THE BEAR AND THE BOW).

#64 J.A.A. Purves

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Posted 09 May 2012 - 08:59 AM



#65 Tyler

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Posted 06 June 2012 - 06:32 PM

Scotland is planning a major Brave tourism campaign.

The story includes this amazing sentence:

Brave, a 3D animation from the Disney Pixar studios famous for Toy Story, Finding Nemo and the Incredibles, will offer a very different, more childish vision of Scotland from the heroin-ridden dystopia of Trainspotting or the militant nationalism of Braveheart.



#66 Rachel Anne

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Posted 07 June 2012 - 10:08 AM

Well, it's nice to know, I suppose, that Brave doesn't resemble Trainspotting. Parents wondering whether to let their children see it will be reassured.

#67 Peter T Chattaway

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Posted 11 June 2012 - 01:13 AM

Todd McCarthy @ Hollywood Reporter:

Pixar's 13th film, which follows an adventurous Scottish princess, is visually stunning and strongly voiced, but doesn't take any real risks.

The season's latest feature destined to boost the demand for kids' archery lessons, Brave may disappoint many ardent Pixar loyalists while simultaneously delighting old-time Disney fans.

The 13th animated feature from the world's most consistently successful film company is its first set in that version of the past forever favored by Disney, that of princesses, kings, queens, witches, evil spells and prankish secondary characters. For all its pictorial and vocal beauty, the film's emotional line and dramatic contrivances are both more familiar and less inventive than what's usually delivered by the studio. Younger kids won't mind but many viewers accustomed to relying upon Pixar for something special will feel a sense of letdown due to the lack of adventurousness. A muscular box office ride is virtually a given. . . .

What results is a film that starts off big and promising but diminishes into a rather wee thing as it chugs along, with climactic drama that is both too conveniently wrapped up and hinges on magical elements that are somewhat confusing to boot. Not only is the tale laden with standard-issue fairy tale and familiar girl empowerment tropes, but the entire project lacks the imaginative leaps, unexpected jokes and sense of fun and wonder that habitually set Pixar productions apart from the pack. Its ideas seem Earthbound.

On a sensory level, however, Brave is almost entirely a delight. The wild beauty of Scotland, of the verdant forests and the craggy peaks, is lovingly rendered with a gorgeous palette of painterly colors and in very agreeable 3D. Even better, the voicings here are among the most exceptional and pleasurable of any animated film you might care to name. . . .


Peter Debruge @ Variety:

Walt Disney began his feature career with a princess story. Now Pixar gives princesses a go after making a dozen other toons, and though the studio brings its usual level of perfectionism and heart to the assignment, "Brave" seems a wee bit conventional by comparison with, say, how radically "The Incredibles" reinvented the superhero genre -- not that Pixar's eager international following will object. Adding a female director to its creative boys' club, the studio has fashioned a resonant tribute to mother-daughter relationships that packs a level of poignancy on par with such beloved male-bonding classics as "Finding Nemo." . . .

Merida has two days to undo her mistake before the change becomes permanent, but by this point, the film has become just another fairy tale, and only the youngest of children will be surprised by what follows. Familiar though its elements may be, "Brave" feels quite different from earlier Pixar films, demonstrating a refreshing versatility in an oeuvre that was starting to look a bit staid, especially as sequels overtook the slate. . . .



#68 SDG

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Posted 11 June 2012 - 06:14 AM

  • Don't read the reviews! Darn it, I knew critics would have no qualms about revealing the key second act plot point. There is a reason the Pixar marketing has been all about the first act, with some imagery from later acts thrown in in a way that doesn't spoil what happens. This sucks.
  • There is actually something pretty unconventional about how the film's theme develops that these critics aren't glomming to.


#69 morgan1098

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Posted 11 June 2012 - 11:58 AM

  • Don't read the reviews! Darn it, I knew critics would have no qualms about revealing the key second act plot point. There is a reason the Pixar marketing has been all about the first act, with some imagery from later acts thrown in in a way that doesn't spoil what happens. This sucks.
  • There is actually something pretty unconventional about how the film's theme develops that these critics aren't glomming to.


3. Don't go to the toy aisle to look at the Brave toys with your kids. The packaging and play features are also filled with spoilers.

#70 SDG

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Posted 11 June 2012 - 12:14 PM

  • Don't read the reviews! Darn it, I knew critics would have no qualms about revealing the key second act plot point. There is a reason the Pixar marketing has been all about the first act, with some imagery from later acts thrown in in a way that doesn't spoil what happens. This sucks.
3. Don't go to the toy aisle to look at the Brave toys with your kids. The packaging and play features are also filled with spoilers.


I get the irony, but it's true nonetheless. It's the job of filmmakers to make a product with integrity, and the job of marketers to shamelessly exploit that product in every way possible.

#71 Peter T Chattaway

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Posted 11 June 2012 - 12:46 PM

SDG wrote:
: It's the job of filmmakers to make a product with integrity, and the job of marketers to shamelessly exploit that product in every way possible.

The interesting thing here is that the marketing, as you note, has been pretty coy about the second-act twist, whereas the filmmakers were openly talking about it with at least one reporter a year ago (as quoted several posts back in this thread).

The *merchandising* has given things away, yes. It happens. I knew the entire plot to Toy Story 3 before it opened because I saw the colouring book at the local drug store.

The trailer, incidentally, doesn't give away the main second-act twist that the reviews do, but it *does* seem to hint at a concurrent (or subsequent?) plot twist that the filmmakers did *not* reveal last year. I refer to the way the trailer underscores the fact that the princess has triplet brothers, and then the trailer shows three identical *little* bears.

#72 Peter T Chattaway

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Posted 11 June 2012 - 02:27 PM

Drew Taylor @ The Playlist:

There are a lot of firsts associated with "Brave," Disney/Pixar's new feature, set in the misty Scottish highlands. It's the studio's first period piece ("The Incredibles'" captivating retro-futurism doesn't count, it seems), their first fairy tale, and their first film led by a female character (in this case Princess Merida, voiced with strength and conviction by Kelly Macdonald). It was, at one point, also the studio's first movie directed by a woman (Brenda Chapman). And it's these firsts, combined with a charming atmosphere and layers of genuine heart, that make you want to love "Brave" more than you actually do. Because for all these breakthroughs, "Brave" feels hopelessly safe, less a Pixar trailblazer than yet another entry in the Disney princess line of films and products. Brave it is not. . . .

The movie changes, too, going from the tale of a plucky young girl who discovers herself and her power (and causes everyone else to acknowledge the same) to being both broader and more simplistic. It’s now about the relationship between her and her mother (Pixar can never walk away from a good buddy movie set-up), and instead of a young girl’s empowerment it’s about things like responsibility, entitlement, selfishness and communication. Things get much, much less interesting. . . .

Unfortunately, the script for “Brave,” worked on by Chapman, Steve Purcell, Irene Mecchi, and Chapman’s directorial successor, Mark Andrews, is wobbly and overtly segmented, with each section of the movie never having enough time to fully breathe or gain any traction. Some sections of the movie are just tonally amiss . . . The last act, in particular, is a mess . . .


I dunno, a film about responsibility, entitlement, selfishness and communication wouldn't necessarily be a bad thing, whatever the gender of its protagonist.

#73 Darryl A. Armstrong

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Posted 11 June 2012 - 02:36 PM

The trailer, incidentally, doesn't give away the main second-act twist that the reviews do, but it *does* seem to hint at a concurrent (or subsequent?) plot twist that the filmmakers did *not* reveal last year. I refer to the way the trailer underscores the fact that the princess has triplet brothers, and then the trailer shows three identical *little* bears.


I took my 4-year-old daughter to Barnes & Noble over the weekend and they were giving kids Brave activity booklets. These booklets didn't give away any plot points per say, but my daughter looked at one image in the book of the three little bears and says, "They're the princess' brothers." I assume she had seen another book or toys with her mom.

#74 SDG

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Posted 11 June 2012 - 02:37 PM

I dunno, a film about responsibility, entitlement, selfishness and communication wouldn't necessarily be a bad thing, whatever the gender of its protagonist.

Thank you.

And to that list we can add pride, contrition, filial piety…

#75 Rachel Anne

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Posted 11 June 2012 - 06:18 PM

(quoting Drew Taylor) instead of a young girl’s empowerment it’s about things like responsibility, entitlement, selfishness and communication. Things get much, much less interesting. . . .


Responsibility INSTEAD of Empowerment? Surely responsibility is a moral framework that guides the use of power. What is power without it? As Peter Parker said: With great power comes great responsibility.

Edited by bowen, 11 June 2012 - 06:41 PM.


#76 Peter T Chattaway

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Posted 11 June 2012 - 06:35 PM

Yeah, I get the feeling that Drew Taylor's review is a little too enamoured of youthful rebellion (or the juvenalization of... oops, wrong thread).

SDG, you said on Twitter that this film might be a response to DreamWorks (rather than simply a mimicry of DreamWorks); I'm wondering, though, based on what little I know of the plot, if this film might also be a response to "renaissance" era Disney, especially films like The Little Mermaid. (It is, perhaps, not coincidental that both DreamWorks and "renaissance" era Disney were overseen by the same man, i.e. Jeffrey Katzenberg.)

#77 SDG

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Posted 11 June 2012 - 08:44 PM

Yeah, I get the feeling that Drew Taylor's review is a little too enamoured of youthful rebellion (or the juvenalization of... oops, wrong thread).

SDG, you said on Twitter that this film might be a response to DreamWorks (rather than simply a mimicry of DreamWorks); I'm wondering, though, based on what little I know of the plot, if this film might also be a response to "renaissance" era Disney, especially films like The Little Mermaid. (It is, perhaps, not coincidental that both DreamWorks and "renaissance" era Disney were overseen by the same man, i.e. Jeffrey Katzenberg.)

Quite right, Peter. Brave is in part—I don't want to overstate this, and I keep qualifying it—in part a counterpoint to "everything from The Little Mermaid to How to Train Your Dragon," as my draft review says.

#78 Peter T Chattaway

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Posted 12 June 2012 - 01:02 AM

Interesting... David Poland's take on the film seems to be somewhat the opposite of the trades':

My experience of Brave changed as I watched the film. I liked it, but wasn’t in love in the first act. It felt a little simple and Disney-familiar. But as things turned, I got more interested. And by the time things were heading to the climax of the story, Brave grabbed me harder and harder,

No smart alecky Tangled this. This film has the emotional weight of great child/parent sagas. What parents want to know about their kids… what kids dream they could see other parents. Weighty stuff. And the pressure is on for each side to find its own answers.

Smart stuff. And I think it will just get better with multiple showings.


I'm seeing this on Thursday night, BTW. I assume it's okay to take both of my six-year-olds?

#79 SDG

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Posted 12 June 2012 - 04:47 AM

FWIW, my review describes a trajectory/experience with the film similar to Poland's.

I'm seeing this on Thursday night, BTW. I assume it's okay to take both of my six-year-olds?

Probably. Depends on the six-year-olds, maybe. There are some dark/intense/scary bits, and a youngster at the screening Sarah and I attended was briefly and verbally uncomfortable, but in the end everything was fine. (He/She also provided the audience with our biggest laugh with two words of spontaneous reassuring commentary at the climax.)

#80 SDG

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Posted 12 June 2012 - 05:12 AM

(quoting Drew Taylor) instead of a young girl’s empowerment it’s about things like responsibility, entitlement, selfishness and communication. Things get much, much less interesting. . . .

Responsibility INSTEAD of Empowerment? Surely responsibility is a moral framework that guides the use of power. What is power without it? As Peter Parker said: With great power comes great responsibility.

Missed this earlier. Good comment, Bowen. What is meant by "empowerment" here seems to be something like "pursuit of individualistic self-fulfillment"—and THAT is "much, much less interesting" to ME, at any rate. I'm sure Merida is ultimately more empowered than we see Ariel or Belle or Rapunzel being (maybe not Hiccup; I'd have to rewatch HTTYD to figure that one out).