"Feminist Make Your Destiny Fantasy"
BRAVE is a surprising movie for Pixar with a clear feminist message, Romantic worldview, and strong occult content.
Growing up as a Princess, Merida has been training all her life to one day be Queen. Her mother, Queen Elinor, loves her dearly, but also gives her directions on how to be the best princess. Her father, King Fergus, enjoys her tomboy ways, including her skill at archery and riding. This creates in Merida a longing to make her own way and not listen to the concerns of others.
Suitors come to the castle to compete for Merida. They are the first born boys of the three neighboring tribes. Appalled at their poor archery skills, Merida decides to take on the challenge for herself, and clearly beats out the men competing.
The suitors don’t seem suitable, and Merida wants to take action and follows the magical “wisp” spirits that lead her to a witch. Merida has a wish and asks the witch to create a spell that will change her mother’s mind so she won’t have to marry.
Taking the spell which looks like a delicious cake, Merida is so overjoyed that she doesn’t get to hear the downside to the spell from the witch and quickly gives it to her mother. Almost instantly, Queen Elinor turns into a bear. Of course, this wasn’t what Merida expected at all! The King hunts bears for revenge because he lost his leg to a bear saving his family years before. Merida has to escape with her mother, now a bear, from the castle to save her mother.
Merida has to try to reverse the spell before it becomes permanent. She learns from a message from the witch that she and her mother have to reconcile. Each has to learn to love, listen, and humble themselves in order to work together and fight the spell.
BRAVE is beautifully animated, as is the fashion for Pixar. The interesting thing about BRAVE is that, aside from the animation quality, it doesn’t feel like a Pixar movie. BRAVE is definitely for older children. A clear message is the main character wanting independence from marriage and free will to create her own destiny. Merida is not a charming, sweet young girl, but rather whines about having to follow her mother’s principles of being a princess. Though she does humble herself and ask forgiveness, children shouldn’t replicate most of Merida’s behavior.
BRAVE has a strong Romantic, feminist worldview about following your heart first rather than God’s Kingdom or God’s Righteousness. Merida fights to create her own destiny, rather than do what is right. She also lets spirits guide her actions, which is occult. As God warns in Deuteronomy 18:10,11:
“Let no one be found among you who sacrifices his son or daughter in the fire, who practices divination or sorcery, interprets omens, engages in witchcraft, or casts spells, or who is a medium or spiritist or who consults the dead.”
Thus, MOVIEGUIDE® advises strong caution regarding BRAVE.
(RoRo, FeFe, OO, C, B, VV, N, A, M) Strong Romantic, feminist worldview with strong occult elements stressing following your heart rather then doing what is right, with a witch creating spells and spirits leading the main character to the witch and guiding her, with a redemptive, moral scene of repentance and forgiveness; no foul language, some burping; several scenes of men fighting, man punches other man, bear attacks; kissing; upper male nudity, male rear nudity, man “moons” other men; drinking; no smoking or drug use; and, young children steal food and rebellious children talk back to parents and authority figures.
BRAVE is a departure for a Pixar movie. Princess Merida has been training all her life to be Queen. Her mother, Queen Elinor teaches her how to be the best princess, while King Fergus, her father, enjoys her tomboy ways. This creates a longing in Merida to do her own thing. Suitors come to compete for Merida, but none seems suitable. Merida decides to take action. She follows the magical “wisp” spirits that lead her to a witch. She asks for a spell from the witch to change her mother’s mind. Merida is so overjoyed she doesn’t get to hear about the spell’s downside from the witch. She quickly gives it to her mother. Queen Elinor turns into a bear. The King hunts bears for revenge because he lost his leg to a bear saving his family years before. So, she must escape with her mother from the castle.
BRAVE is beautifully animated but contains offensive messages. Despite repentance and forgiveness, BRAVE has a strong Romantic, feminist worldview about following your heart rather than doing what’s right. Merida also lets spirits guide her actions. Thus, BRAVE requires strong caution.