Pixar animation is enjoyable if not knockout Discuss this article
With past achievements including the Toy Story trilogy, Finding Nemo and Wall-E, Pixar has pushed the envelope for digital animation so many times that there’s a tiny bit of disappointment involved when its latest offering turns out to be merely really good rather than an absolute knockout. It does offer the company’s first female heroine, a tomboy-ish medieval Scots princess, Merida (Macdonald). But its blend of warrior adventure, parental bonding, scary bits and cute hi-jinks leans more to established, slightly predictable Disney formulae than usual.
Yet Brave remains enjoyable. It’s grounded in authentic emotional conflict as free-spirited teenager Merida fails to see why her mum, the Queen (Thompson), insists on getting her married, since she’d rather be off shooting arrows than standing beside some stupid nobleman. With a super voice cast – including Billy Connolly and Kevin McKidd – clearly having a ball, there’s a degree of knockabout in the air, but no sense of shortbread-tin tweeness. No, not another Pixar classic, but for full-on family fun it’s a brave effort.
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