PDA

View Full Version : Brave



Pages : [1] 2

Scowling Dragon
2012-06-17, 03:36 PM
I was afraid It would turn out this way. (http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/brave_2012/news/1925374/tomatometer_watch_brave/) :smallsigh:

Sunken Valley
2012-06-17, 03:57 PM
Is this out yet? It's not out in UK til July/August and we have Scotland!

Pokonic
2012-06-17, 04:00 PM
I dont think so.

Honestly, I think that to see what it's realy like you have to watch it. It would not be the first time I have disagreed with a RT rating.

Scowling Dragon
2012-06-17, 04:03 PM
Im talking from how it sounds. Thats what I was worried about:

That it would be just "another" female empowerment story (Nothing against that just this type of story is getting old).

CoffeeIncluded
2012-06-17, 04:10 PM
Don't care, it's a pixar, still watching it.

INDYSTAR188
2012-06-17, 04:35 PM
I'm definitely going to see this. Might wait until its on RedBox or something but we're all looking forward to it. Even if it's a trope filled movie, it's a Pixar movie and aside from Cars 2 I've liked all of them. I can't wait for my daughter to check it out too!

Mr.Silver
2012-06-17, 04:42 PM
Is this out yet? It's not out in UK til July/August and we have Scotland!
This^

Up took something like 5 months to cross the Atlantic. I'm starting to think some of the higher-ups at Pixar might just dislike the UK :smalltongue:

Gnomish Wanderer
2012-06-17, 11:24 PM
*shrugs* Like others have said I'm not going to hold weight in the words of the critics and just see the film for myself. I'm still excited from the trailers.

Dumbledore lives
2012-06-18, 12:26 AM
To be fair there have been under 20 reviews, so the early scores don't mean too much. Even if there are some disparaging remarks, I bet it'll end up with a better score than it's at now, and on the whole be a good movie. There's still hope is what I'm saying.

Brother Oni
2012-06-18, 02:07 AM
The fact that the trailer renders the Archer's Paradox in such loving detail makes Brave watchable at least once for me.

Soras Teva Gee
2012-06-18, 02:20 AM
This^

Up took something like 5 months to cross the Atlantic. I'm starting to think some of the higher-ups at Pixar might just dislike the UK :smalltongue:

Obviously your country has displeased the Mouse.

McStabbington
2012-06-18, 02:42 AM
Im talking from how it sounds. Thats what I was worried about:

That it would be just "another" female empowerment story (Nothing against that just this type of story is getting old).

I'm not sure why you have a problem with more female empowerment stories. It's not like the entertainment landscape is awash with powerful female characters who go on a heroic journey. Moreover, I disagree with the notion that a movie must be original to be entertaining. Star Wars recycles the heck out of a huge number of tropes, but I still watch it all the time because it's so effective at tinkering with those tropes as it recycles them.

GenericGuy
2012-06-18, 02:50 AM
I'm not sure why you have a problem with more female empowerment stories. It's not like the entertainment landscape is awash with powerful female characters who go on a heroic journey. Moreover, I disagree with the notion that a movie must be original to be entertaining. Star Wars recycles the heck out of a huge number of tropes, but I still watch it all the time because it's so effective at tinkering with those tropes as it recycles them.

But Star Wars rekindled pop-cultures love of Sci-Fi space opera, which had been in a coma for awhile, while using those clichéd heroes’ journey tropes.

Currently were a little saturated with Fantasy, so I and most people can get that “fix” almost anywhere, and according to the advertising I’ve seen for Brave is in a nutshell Fantasy and Girl Power. Like Scowling Dragon, I got nothing really against Girl Power works; it’s just not something that excites me enough to go out of my way to see it.

Knaight
2012-06-18, 02:54 AM
Currently were a little saturated with Fantasy, so I and most people can get that “fix” almost anywhere, and according to the advertising I’ve seen for Brave is in a nutshell Fantasy and Girl Power. Like Scowling Dragon, I got nothing really against Girl Power works; it’s just not something that excites me enough to go out of my way to see it.

It's Pixar's work though, which means that it is almost certainly done quite well. Plus, it's fantasy involving characters deeply tied to family, and there has been a dearth of that -the occasional high profile story aside.

Mr.Silver
2012-06-18, 05:53 AM
I'm not sure why you have a problem with more female empowerment stories. It's not like the entertainment landscape is awash with powerful female characters who go on a heroic journey.
The problem is that even these type of stories also are not really about a 'powerful female character who goes on a heroic journey'. Certainly not the degree stories with a male protagonist will be about a powerful male character who goes on a heroic journey.
In a hero's journey type story, the main problems the male protagonist faces will be the obstacles set in his path, usually in the form of the machinations of the villain. The empowerment here will come pretty much entirely come from the feats the character does. If the character is female however, then a large chunk of the film will inevitably be based around the character having to 'prove' that she is 'just as good as the boys' at accomplishing something - and a comparably amount of the empowerment will often end-up being portrayed in that light. This will usually be done in the least thought-provoking way imaginable - which in the case of works set before 1920 will involve putting the female lead in a corset which she will not like (regardless of whether or not such garments were actually in use at the time). It is very rare for any adventure type to story to go beyond that, even though that message in 2012 is just going to come across as patronising.
Basically, if an adventure film has to spend a considerable amount of its running time making a big deal out of how the female lead is the lead even though she is female, that's not particularly empowering. Now, I have no idea how well Pixar will handle this, they could do it really well, but so far a lot of the marketing has been very much of the 'look, we have a female lead who is the lead even though she is female' and 'she must prove she is as good as the boys and not just some girly girl' variety.


It's Pixar's work though, which means that it is almost certainly done quite well.
On the one hand, this is generally true. On the other hand, well, we have the Cars films...

Thinker
2012-06-18, 06:46 AM
This^

Up took something like 5 months to cross the Atlantic. I'm starting to think some of the higher-ups at Pixar might just dislike the UK :smalltongue:

It takes a lot of time to translate the film and get the lips to sync up correctly with the new dialog.

Jaros
2012-06-18, 07:11 AM
It takes a lot of time to translate the film and get the lips to sync up correctly with the new dialog.

We, uh... speak English in the UK too...

Traab
2012-06-18, 07:59 AM
We, uh... speak English in the UK too...

Pfft, AMERICANS speak english, I dont know what the heck odd tribal dialect you odd UK types speak. :smallbiggrin: Heh, seriously though, it may be more that before they send it overseas to europe, they want to have all the translations in place for the variety of countries there. If they shipped over the english version ahead of time, its entirely possible some brave entrepreneur would pirate his own translated versions and that would cut into pixars profits.

Knaight
2012-06-18, 08:04 AM
On the one hand, this is generally true. On the other hand, well, we have the Cars films...

The Cars films are pretty much the only flaws in their record (I'd also add Toy Story 2). By virtue of not being cars, this probably should get the benefit of the doubt. Plus, even on Rotten Tomatoes it is doing far better - Cars 2 managed a whole 38% Fresh.

Thinker
2012-06-18, 09:12 AM
We, uh... speak English in the UK too...

Since when? :smalltongue:

Jaros
2012-06-18, 10:51 AM
Looking at it, I don't know if it was subtitled or dubbed but Up was released in a lot (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1049413/releaseinfo) of different countries months before the UK. They really do hate us!

Dragosai
2012-06-18, 02:49 PM
Im talking from how it sounds. Thats what I was worried about:

That it would be just "another" female empowerment story (Nothing against that just this type of story is getting old).

I could not agree more. It would be one thing if they made a change in the typical female empowerment tale, i.e. also still make the character human, but they never do.

Why are there still so few movies that have good strong female leads? Surely it still can't be the times I mean one of the best ever if not the best strong female movie character was made 30 years ago. Can't they learn from Ripley and give us real strong female characters?

Instead we have another movie of 'she is a strong female because she goes against the conventions of her society/environment/time period.' I think we might have seen this a thousand times before.

Jayngfet
2012-06-18, 02:54 PM
I could not agree more. It would be one thing if they made a change in the typical female empowerment tale, i.e. also still make the character human, but they never do.

Why are there still so few movies that have good strong female leads? Surely it still can't be the times I mean one of the best ever if not the best strong female movie character was made 30 years ago. Can't they learn from Ripley and give us real strong female characters?

Instead we have another movie of 'she is a strong female because she goes against the conventions of her society/environment/time period.' I think we might have seen this a thousand times before.

I'm pretty sure that part only makes up about the first 20 minutes of the story. While the american trailers are focusing on the setup Japanese trailers make the plot seem more like Meridia's brash nature has caused HUGE problems and she spends the whole movie trying to fix what she broke, instead of just rebelling for two hours.

Philistine
2012-06-18, 04:15 PM
Oh? That actually sounds like it might be even slightly interesting. The US trailers make the film look like just another "Rebellious Child/Adolescent Hero(ine) Really IS Just Better, Smarter, and Wiser Than Everyone Else, Especially Adults" kidsploitation flick.

JadedDM
2012-06-18, 08:26 PM
Man, I just can't help but roll my eyes. Why is it that every time a new Pixar movie comes out, people start prophesying doom and gloom? "That's it! This is going to bomb; the reign of Pixar is no more!" Every. Single. Time.

"Toy Story 3? Geez, they made a third one? Clearly, Pixar has sold out. They'll probably just rehash the same plot from the last movie. Anything for a buck!"

"Up? How can you make a whole movie about an old guy and his flying house? This is going to bomb so bad, you guys. I'm calling it now."

"Wall-E? This is just a ripoff of Batteries Not Included and possibly Short Circuit! Laaaame!"

And yes, those are all actual things I heard people say about those movies before they were released.

I don't understand it, really. There is so much crap out there produced every year. Pixar, on the other hand, is consistently good. Even their worst movies (Cars) are still loads better than anything Dreamworks produces. Why do people want Pixar to fail so badly? It baffles me, really.

Lateral
2012-06-18, 09:55 PM
I don't understand it, really. There is so much crap out there produced every year. Pixar, on the other hand, is consistently good. Even their worst movies (Cars) are still loads better than anything Dreamworks produces. Why do people want Pixar to fail so badly? It baffles me, really.

It's just worse now because Cars 2 was their most recent movie, and it's happened before that a previously untouchable moviemaker suddenly and quickly loses their touch. Look at Don Bluth, for example. Not saying it's likely to happen here, since Pixar is a group of people rather than just one person, but it is a valid concern.

Brother Oni
2012-06-19, 02:17 AM
Even their worst movies (Cars) are still loads better than anything Dreamworks produces.

I don't think Cars was better than How To Train Your Dragon, but I do admit that Dreamworks animations targets a different demographic.

Dreamworks stuff generally goes for the crude side of children, with little consideration for adults. Numerous pop culture references and body fluids abound, children love it, but unless you're drunk, otherwise chemically altered or simply childish, adults tend to grow above it.

Pixar animation, like Aardman, aim for children but adds elements for adults, which gives a broader appeal. Even their worse movie, Cars, has this - the making of documentaries for Cars show the amount of research that went into the decline of the old Route 66 and how this is portrayed in the movie.
Aardman just adds little side flourishes and in-jokes that completely fly over the heads of childrens but will set observant adults off in fits of laughter (the 'May Contain Nuts' label at the end of Curse of the Wererabbit for example).

Studio Ghibili on the other hand, just does stories, with little regard for adults or children. An excellent example of this is Porco Rosso, which has a couple minutes long dialogue on the rise of facism in post WWI Italy in the middle of an otherwise straightforward adventure story for children, because it fits the story.


Based on Pixar's track record, I'm more than willing to wait to see the film before jumping to conclusions. There are numerous examples of how trailers can be misleading, intentional or otherwise - 'Scary Mary Poppins' for example which re-edits the Disney classic into a tense supernatural horror, or 'Shining' which makes the Stephen King movie seem like a lighthearted family drama where a father is trying to reconnect with his young son emotionally and not with an axe.

Killer Angel
2012-06-19, 02:33 AM
Pixar, on the other hand, is consistently good. Even their worst movies (Cars) are still loads better than anything Dreamworks produces.

Oh, please.
Shrek, Madagascar, Kung Fu Panda, How to train your dragon, and many others...
They're almost on the same level.

(edit: With "almost" i mean that i still give the edge to Pixar, but the gap isn't so wide as you depict)

Scowling Dragon
2012-06-19, 02:35 AM
Id have to disagree. They are fine and pretty solid, but I never felt that they reached the same hights that pixar does at times.

Killer Angel
2012-06-19, 03:57 AM
Id have to disagree. They are fine and pretty solid, but I never felt that they reached the same hights that pixar does at times.

With "almost" i mean that i give the edge to Pixar (fixed in the previous post to clarify).
It was the phrase "their worst movies are still loads better than anything Dreamworks produces" that seems to me an ungenerous generalisation.

Gnomish Wanderer
2012-06-19, 04:05 AM
I have to say, the quality control on Pixar seems a lot higher than at Dreamworks. Dreamworks has the occasional gem, but for every How to Train Your Dragon there's three Hoodwinked's.

Scowling Dragon
2012-06-19, 04:18 AM
With "almost" i mean that i give the edge to Pixar (fixed in the previous post to clarify).
It was the phrase "their worst movies are still loads better than anything Dreamworks produces" that seems to me an ungenerous generalisation.

100%. Cars 2 was a great example of that.

You can still say that the worst that Dreamworks makes is miles below the worst of pixar:

Shrek 3 Vs Cars 2

And still. I didn't mind Cars 2- Because I knew why they made it.

Whilst UP was the heartwarming awesome thing it was, corporate commanders know no such thing as "Art". For them, life exists only to pump money into their viens of hate and vileness.

So they pretty much pressured Pixar into making a cash machine like Cars 1 was (It made 2 billion in secondary toys alone) except ramped up to the 101.

t209
2012-06-19, 04:32 AM
We, uh... speak English in the UK too...

How about Gaelic language or certain vulgar words that is okay to use in US but not okay for kids in UK (TF2 Sniper's W word and B word that has to do with blood but TF2 is M rated).

Brother Oni
2012-06-19, 04:39 AM
I have to say, the quality control on Pixar seems a lot higher than at Dreamworks. Dreamworks has the occasional gem, but for every How to Train Your Dragon there's three Hoodwinked's.

While I agree with your sentiment, quality control doesn't mean that; I'd be hard pressed to say that Pixar's animation quality and attention to detail exceeds that of Dreamworks.
Taking the two superhero movies the studios have put out (The Incredibles and Megamind), the main difference is in the tone and story of the movies. Personal preferences on art style aside, could you put objectively state that one movie clearly looked or was animated better than the other?

The problem is that Dreamworks' stories are generally nowhere near as good as Pixar's, so even if it's the animation is equal, the generally dead duck of a story makes it seem worse.

Gnomish Wanderer
2012-06-19, 05:03 AM
While I agree with your sentiment, quality control doesn't mean that; I'd be hard pressed to say that Pixar's animation quality and attention to detail exceeds that of Dreamworks.
Taking the two superhero movies the studios have put out (The Incredibles and Megamind), the main difference is in the tone and story of the movies. Personal preferences on art style aside, could you put objectively state that one movie clearly looked or was animated better than the other?

The problem is that Dreamworks' stories are generally nowhere near as good as Pixar's, so even if it's the animation is equal, the generally dead duck of a story makes it seem worse.

For me, quality control includes the story. Dreamworks needs someone to read through their scripts before they start animating and cut out all the bad ones.

Xondoure
2012-06-19, 05:27 AM
While I agree with your sentiment, quality control doesn't mean that; I'd be hard pressed to say that Pixar's animation quality and attention to detail exceeds that of Dreamworks.
Taking the two superhero movies the studios have put out (The Incredibles and Megamind), the main difference is in the tone and story of the movies. Personal preferences on art style aside, could you put objectively state that one movie clearly looked or was animated better than the other?

The problem is that Dreamworks' stories are generally nowhere near as good as Pixar's, so even if it's the animation is equal, the generally dead duck of a story makes it seem worse.

Considering the Incredible's was made years before Megamind that isn't a fair comparison. For example the reason Brave is such a big deal is because back when the Incredible's was being shot animators were having nightmares about handling Violet's hair.

Mauve Shirt
2012-06-19, 05:44 AM
Considering the Incredible's was made years before Megamind that isn't a fair comparison. For example the reason Brave is such a big deal is because back when the Incredible's was being shot animators were having nightmares about handling Violet's hair.

I still haven't seen Megamind, but this is true. The difference between just six years ago and now is astounding. I also like the stylized Incredibles a lot, it worked with the plot.

Yeah, How To Train Your Dragon was much much better than Cars 2. But everything Pixar has ever made is better than Shrek 4 and Madagascar 7. I doubt Brave will be more disappointing than even the thought of Shrek 4, no matter how "female empowerment" it is.

Killer Angel
2012-06-19, 05:51 AM
For me, quality control includes the story. Dreamworks needs someone to read through their scripts before they start animating and cut out all the bad ones.

If it were so immediate, we wouldn't never have bad movies.
Even a blind man can see the difference between Shrek 1-2 and Shrek 3-4.
The same can be said for Cars 1 and Cars 2.



Yeah, How To Train Your Dragon was much much better than Cars 2. But everything Pixar has ever made is better than Shrek 4 and Madagascar 7. I doubt Brave will be more disappointing than even the thought of Shrek 4, no matter how "female empowerment" it is.
QFT.

Is the medium quality of Pixar superior to the medium quality of Dreamworks? yes.
Is the lowest Pixar superior to the lowest DW? absolutely yes.
Is the lowest Pixar superior to the best DW? absolutely not.
Is the best Pixar superior to the best DW? IMO they're on par.

Scowling Dragon
2012-06-19, 05:57 AM
Is the medium quality of Pixar superior to the medium quality of Dreamworks? yes.
Is the lowest Pixar superior to the lowest DW? absolutely yes.
Is the lowest Pixar superior to the best DW? absolutely not.
Is the best Pixar superior to the best DW? IMO they're on par.

Exactly my thoughts. And thats not to say Dreamworks isn't good. They can do great stuff as well.

DigoDragon
2012-06-19, 06:10 AM
The only Pixar movie I've seen that was "Meh" in my opinion was A Bug's Life. So regardless of the critic reviews, I'm going to check out Brave and judge for myself.

Brother Oni
2012-06-19, 07:06 AM
For me, quality control includes the story. Dreamworks needs someone to read through their scripts before they start animating and cut out all the bad ones.

The problem is, a 'bad story' generally doesn't have cut and dried parameters and is usually very subjective. A number of people didn't like Toy Story 3 for example.
Even if you have a good story, the execution of it (storyboarding, editing, etc) can turn it into a bad one and that's before we get anywhere near voice actors, sound effects or musical score, although I admit these latter aspects tend to bleed into the realm of 'quality control'.

Generally though, production values, particularly in animation, are much easier to judge as they do have very defined limits and qualities.


Considering the Incredible's was made years before Megamind that isn't a fair comparison. For example the reason Brave is such a big deal is because back when the Incredible's was being shot animators were having nightmares about handling Violet's hair.

I was trying to eliminate story bias, but I admit you are right.

Suppose we pick two releases at the approximate time: Pixar released Toy Story 3 in 2010, while DWA released HTTYD, Megamind and Shrek Forever After in the same year. Could you catagorically that the production values of TS3 was better than any of those three?

Philistine
2012-06-19, 07:44 AM
Based on Pixar's track record, I'm more than willing to wait to see the film before jumping to conclusions. There are numerous examples of how trailers can be misleading, intentional or otherwise - 'Scary Mary Poppins' for example which re-edits the Disney classic into a tense supernatural horror, or 'Shining' which makes the Stephen King movie seem like a lighthearted family drama where a father is trying to reconnect with his young son emotionally and not with an axe.

The problem is, the trailer is supposed to make audiences want to see the film in question; as such, the presumption is that they're putting their best foot forward. So if the trailer makes the film look like a nauseatingly cutesy, samey-same piece of Standard Hollywood Imbecilic Tripe, then you not only can but should assume the movie is going to be exactly that. (And no, re-cut joke trailers for classic movies have nothing to do with this. Amusing as they are.)

Z3ro
2012-06-19, 09:37 AM
The problem is, the trailer is supposed to make audiences want to see the film in question; as such, the presumption is that they're putting their best foot forward. So if the trailer makes the film look like a nauseatingly cutesy, samey-same piece of Standard Hollywood Imbecilic Tripe, then you not only can but should assume the movie is going to be exactly that. (And no, re-cut joke trailers for classic movies have nothing to do with this. Amusing as they are.)

Are you kidding? There's plenty of real examples where the trailers barely touched on what the movie was about. One of the most recent examples I can think of (partially because it was so dissapointing) was Hanna. The trailer made it out to be a Bourne movie with a 15 year old girl. Turned out to be a fish out of water story about growing up for the majority of the movie. So dissappointing.

Saph
2012-06-19, 10:10 AM
The thing is that Cars 2 was a massive drop in quality from Pixar's average. Just take a look at the relative scores (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Pixar_films) of their films: if you scroll down to the chart with RT, MC, and IMDB ratings there's a huge gap between Cars 2 and, well, everything else really. (Which I personally think is 100% deserved. Even compared to other movies Cars 2 was bad. Compared to Pixar's average it was downright horrible.)

After that, it's not surprising that a lot of people are getting worried that Pixar are losing their touch. Haven't seen Brave yet, but the trailers/promotionals have given me zero interest in watching it, which is a bad sign . . .

Callos_DeTerran
2012-06-19, 11:58 AM
I still haven't seen Megamind, but this is true. The difference between just six years ago and now is astounding. I also like the stylized Incredibles a lot, it worked with the plot.

Yeah, How To Train Your Dragon was much much better than Cars 2. But everything Pixar has ever made is better than Shrek 4 and Madagascar 7. I doubt Brave will be more disappointing than even the thought of Shrek 4, no matter how "female empowerment" it is.

Geez, a lot of hate for Shrek 4...I actually liked that movie quite a bit to be honest....3 was terrible though.

Still, going to go see Brave in theaters because I was interested in the movie the moment I first saw the movie poster for it. Probably because of my bizarre fascination with Disney Princesses, Scots, and Pixar.

Candle Jack
2012-06-19, 11:59 AM
I don't understand it, really. There is so much crap out there produced every year. Pixar, on the other hand, is consistently good. Even their worst movies (Cars) are still loads better than anything Dreamworks produces. Why do people want Pixar to fail so badly? It baffles me, really.

"I chose my path, you chose the way of the hero. And they found you amusing for a while, the people of this city. But the one thing they love more than a hero is to see a hero fail, fall, die trying. In spite of everything you've done for them, eventually they will hate you."

Brother Oni
2012-06-19, 12:15 PM
The problem is, the trailer is supposed to make audiences want to see the film in question; as such, the presumption is that they're putting their best foot forward. So if the trailer makes the film look like a nauseatingly cutesy, samey-same piece of Standard Hollywood Imbecilic Tripe, then you not only can but should assume the movie is going to be exactly that.

While I agree to the purpose of trailers and Z3ro's point about misleading trailers is well made, there's another issue where trailers are usually tailored to the target country.

Take the following:
The Pirates! Band of Misfits (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tqtcj20Z778) for the US
The Pirates! In an Adventure with Scientists (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DWOFLtsDvbw) for the UK.

I initially saw the first trailer which didn't particularly enthuse me. The second trailer completely turned it around. :smallbiggrin:

Scowling Dragon
2012-06-19, 12:17 PM
I have to agree.

I PRAY Brave turns out good. Dear god, do I pray.

Philistine
2012-06-19, 12:25 PM
Are you kidding? There's plenty of real examples where the trailers barely touched on what the movie was about. One of the most recent examples I can think of (partially because it was so dissapointing) was Hanna. The trailer made it out to be a Bourne movie with a 15 year old girl. Turned out to be a fish out of water story about growing up for the majority of the movie. So dissappointing.

I dunno. Are you kidding? I never said the purpose of a trailer is to show what a movie is about - I said the purpose of a trailer is to put [donkeys] in seats. If that means misrepresenting the movie itself, well, at least they'll still manage to sell a few tickets on opening weekend.

Also, I enjoyed Hanna, and didn't feel that the trailer particularly misled me about the nature of the film; it had plenty of "genetically engineered teenager taking on jackbooted Agency thugs" to satisfy my tastes. (I also remember The Bourne Identity spending quite a bit of time on just Jason and Marie in a car, talking. It was not a slam-bam-bam series of cuts from action scene to action scene.)

JadedDM
2012-06-19, 01:29 PM
"I chose my path, you chose the way of the hero. And they found you amusing for a while, the people of this city. But the one thing they love more than a hero is to see a hero fail, fall, die trying. In spite of everything you've done for them, eventually they will hate you."

This sounds familiar, but I can't quite place where it came from.

And for everyone saying, "Well, Cars 2 was less than perfect, so all of the doom and gloom is justified," I just want to remind everyone that the same thing happened for Toy Story 3, Up and Wall-E, too.

Brother Oni
2012-06-19, 01:32 PM
This sounds familiar, but I can't quite place where it came from.

Google says the Green Goblin from the 2002 Spiderman movie.

Edit: Oh step on a lego... is that really 10 years old now? :smallfrown:

Saph
2012-06-19, 01:35 PM
And for everyone saying, "Well, Cars 2 was less than perfect, so all of the doom and gloom is justified," I just want to remind everyone that the same thing happened for Toy Story 3, Up and Wall-E, too.

Have you checked the numbers on those reviews? Toy Story 3, Up, and Wall-E all had a very few negative reviews, but the vast majority of people liked them – they have 99%, 98%, and 96% ratings on RT, respectively. Cars 2's rating? 38%. It wasn't 'less than perfect', it was downright bad.

Avilan the Grey
2012-06-19, 02:48 PM
I don't understand it, really. There is so much crap out there produced every year. Pixar, on the other hand, is consistently good. Even their worst movies (Cars) are still loads better than anything Dreamworks produces.

Absolutely not. How To Train Your Dragon is far better than Cars, and is my second favorite computer-animated movie after The Incredibles. (If anyone is interested, third place is Tangled, another non-pixar movie).
Kung Fu Panda is also right up there with the best Pixar movies.

Now I am one of those who both really dislikes Cars II, but also don't understand the idea that Cars was "bad". The one Pixar movie that was a disappointment to me (other than Cars II, which is bad enough to actually be BAD) was Ratatouille, which was simply tediously boring, and with an uninteresting subject.

As for Brave, I don't understand the criticism, it's a movie I cannot wait to watch!!

Scowling Dragon
2012-06-19, 02:57 PM
Well, If Its one thing i learned is that we all have completely different views on whats are the good animated movies.

Illieas
2012-06-19, 03:22 PM
I am definately going to see it.

Based on a synopsis given by an imagineer. I can say the english trailer does not tell the story very well or at all.

the japanese trailer (http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=iv&src_vid=_8cLhckSAAw&annotation_id=annotation_380495&v=8zzSqWUmlts) is much closer to the plot.

I think the crappy trailer is more along the line of the age problem with animation in america. They attempt to pander to the stereotypical lower age bracket, which is kids love comedy!. so the trailer is mostly the comedy scenes in brave

for example look at the UP trailer. it is 90% comedy

here (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkqzFUhGPJg)

now compare it to what you saw in the movies. I am sure brave will be a good watch. and Cars 2 was money grubbing seeing as car produced tons of money via toys, while UP there was very little in toy you can make that are for kids. unless you like a carl action figure with true cane action

Scowling Dragon
2012-06-19, 03:39 PM
Why do the Japanese get all the good trailers! This is like a subversion of a the standard "Girl revolutionizes middle ages even though the context wouldn't work at all" standard trope!

Illieas
2012-06-19, 05:05 PM
Also interesting article on the development of the Merida character

LINK (http://www.nytimes.com/2012/06/17/movies/pixars-brave-how-the-character-merida-was-developed.html?_r=1&src=dayp)

PhantomFox
2012-06-19, 05:13 PM
RT percentage has risen to 71%. Encouraging sign?

Brother Oni
2012-06-19, 05:39 PM
It could be that the western trailers didn't actually want to spoil the film.

Imagine if the trailer for Up was the beginning montage of Carl and Ellie growing old together - would that scene have the same emotional impact in the film if it had been spoiled?

Japanese trailer spoiler:

Japanese trailer (translated) (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_8cLhckSAAw)

As the comments say, there's a whole supernatural angle here that's simply hidden in the western trailers, presumably to make it a surprise.
Even the Japanese title of the film gives it away - Merida and the Frightening Forest.

Gnomish Wanderer
2012-06-19, 06:15 PM
I think I'm one of the few who liked Cars 2. Sure, the story wasn't as big and important as typical Pixar work, but it still had a charm to it that made it worth watching. It was Pixar's equivalent of a dumb action movie and it was still watchable, unlike a lot of dumb action movies. Maybe there's so much hate for it because people were expecting something of higher quality? I think 38% is undercutting it.

Worira
2012-06-19, 07:38 PM
Why do the Japanese get all the good trailers! This is like a subversion of a the standard "Girl revolutionizes middle ages even though the context wouldn't work at all" standard trope!

In this particular case, I suspect it's largely a case of the trailer playing into general attitudes of the culture it's being shown in: The nail that sticks up gets hammered down vs. the squeaky wheel gets the grease.

JadedDM
2012-06-19, 07:39 PM
Have you checked the numbers on those reviews? Toy Story 3, Up, and Wall-E all had a very few negative reviews, but the vast majority of people liked them – they have 99%, 98%, and 96% ratings on RT, respectively. Cars 2's rating? 38%. It wasn't 'less than perfect', it was downright bad.

Rotten Tomatoes is great and a useful tool, but it's hardly the defining metric for whether a movie is good or bad. Using that logic, Twilight (49%) was actually better than Cars 2. Which one would you rather sit through, gun to your head?

(On a sidenote, I honestly don't believe Cars 2 deserved such poor reviews, and partly suspect that people were deliberately being too hard on it, just as they are with Brave, because they just want so badly for Pixar to fail.)

I enjoyed Cars and Cars 2. Did they touch me in the same way some of the other Pixar movies have? No. Still better written and more entertaining than the crap that other studios push out every year, though.

Nevertheless, the point is, even before Cars 2 was released, people have been predicting the fall of Pixar for years now, and I'm just tired of it, that's all. I'm looking forward to Brave, and I'm pretty sure I'll love it. Pixar hasn't let me down yet, and until they do, I don't see any reason to try and tear them down.

Xondoure
2012-06-19, 08:46 PM
Rotten Tomatoes is great and a useful tool, but it's hardly the defining metric for whether a movie is good or bad. Using that logic, Twilight (49%) was actually better than Cars 2. Which one would you rather sit through, gun to your head?

(On a sidenote, I honestly don't believe Cars 2 deserved such poor reviews, and partly suspect that people were deliberately being too hard on it, just as they are with Brave, because they just want so badly for Pixar to fail.)

I enjoyed Cars and Cars 2. Did they touch me in the same way some of the other Pixar movies have? No. Still better written and more entertaining than the crap that other studios push out every year, though.

Nevertheless, the point is, even before Cars 2 was released, people have been predicting the fall of Pixar for years now, and I'm just tired of it, that's all. I'm looking forward to Brave, and I'm pretty sure I'll love it. Pixar hasn't let me down yet, and until they do, I don't see any reason to try and tear them down.

I think it's more that Pixar set the bar too high. Anything that falls short of that is going to be met with disdain and people will be too disappointed to see what merit it might have.

Philistine
2012-06-19, 11:07 PM
Has anybody posted here that they actually want Pixar to fail, JadedDM? A couple of people have posted that they're afraid the bloom might be off the Pixar rose, especially after Cars 2 was such a blatant cash-grab, but I haven't seen a single comment to the effect that it would be in any way a good or desirable thing if Brave turned out to be as utterly dreadful as the US trailers make it look. So who are you even talking to/about?

Dumbledore lives
2012-06-20, 12:33 AM
I think I'm one of the few who liked Cars 2. Sure, the story wasn't as big and important as typical Pixar work, but it still had a charm to it that made it worth watching. It was Pixar's equivalent of a dumb action movie and it was still watchable, unlike a lot of dumb action movies. Maybe there's so much hate for it because people were expecting something of higher quality? I think 38% is undercutting it.

Rotten Tomatoes has reviews with negative tones as bad, and positive tones as good. So the huge amount of disappointment with Cars 2 is what caused such a bad rating, if you'll look on Metacritic it's significantly better, around 60 (http://www.metacritic.com/movie/cars-2) or about average. Incidentally its video game is actually ranked higher than it is, which is interesting.

Jayngfet
2012-06-20, 12:37 AM
It could be that the western trailers didn't actually want to spoil the film.

Imagine if the trailer for Up was the beginning montage of Carl and Ellie growing old together - would that scene have the same emotional impact in the film if it had been spoiled?

Japanese trailer spoiler:

Japanese trailer (translated) (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_8cLhckSAAw)

As the comments say, there's a whole supernatural angle here that's simply hidden in the western trailers, presumably to make it a surprise.
Even the Japanese title of the film gives it away - Merida and the Frightening Forest.

There's spoiling the surprise, and then there's enticing the audience with what they'd like. I mean if the DnD cartoon had a trailer that was just a bunch of kids on a roller coaster nobody would like it. If say, Star Wars was marketed as being about desert farmers it'd never have taken off.

You can show the premise without spoiling the whole plot. What's Brave about? Girl challenges society, finds out it has unexpected supernatural consequences, has to fix what she messed up. The Japan trailer explains what happened, and hints at a larger story. The american trailer leaves basically everything that wouldn't be in the first 20 minutes out and as such I have no real idea what the film is about watching it. If I'd never seen a seperate trailer I'd have been confused, maybe pleasantly surprised, but confused since all the trailers put together didn't do much more than hint that MAYBE something unnatural was going on, once, for a couple of seconds.

Lord Seth
2012-06-20, 01:44 AM
A couple of people have posted that they're afraid the bloom might be off the Pixar rose, especially after Cars 2 was such a blatant cash-grab,Blatant? Honestly, I don't think it was. I'm inclined to believe John Lasseter that the movie pretty much materialized because when he was traveling around the world promoting the first film he kept imagining the Cars characters being in the locations he was visiting and the movie was made to fulfill that premise. I think if it was an honest-to-goodness cash grab, they would've come up with a less goofy premise than the guys becoming spies.

I don't think Cars 2 came about because they were trying to make a cash-grab (well, no more so than any of their films are--they are designed to make money), it came about because John Lasseter had this random fantasy and really wanted to make it into a movie. You can definitely tell by the credits that he was really into the project considering it was the first film he directed since...the first Cars.

As for Brave, I will agree the English trailers have been pretty bad and the Japanese trailers I saw were significantly better.

Avilan the Grey
2012-06-20, 02:36 AM
Part of the reason for the comedy angle in the west, I think, is that they are milking her father for all what it's worth, since he is voiced by (in America and England) a reasonably popular comedian. I assume Billy Connolly is not as big a name in Japan?

Edit: I don't know where I saw it, but I was aware of the whole supernatural angle a long time ago. It is not in the first trailer, but the whole
"What harm can come from a wish made to a magical item / being"is definitely hinted on heavily in later trailers made for the western market.

(Also, early trailers for Pixar movies are ALWAYS 100% humor and nothing else).

Brother Oni
2012-06-20, 07:02 AM
Part of the reason for the comedy angle in the west, I think, is that they are milking her father for all what it's worth, since he is voiced by (in America and England) a reasonably popular comedian. I assume Billy Connolly is not as big a name in Japan?

Alas good old Billy isn't, despite his previous appearance in a Japan orientated film (The Last Samurai... hoo boy, the things my inlaws have said about that...).

The primary reason for his lack of popularity, is that his Glaswegian accent is pretty much unintelligible to the Japanese. My wife speaks English fluently, yet she maybe understands one word in four (or six, as his accent was a lot stronger early in his career).
The general shouting and insanity that he does is pretty much universal, hence why she's a fan even though she has to watch him with subtitles.

Traab
2012-06-20, 07:58 AM
Alas good old Billy isn't, despite his previous appearance in a Japan orientated film (The Last Samurai... hoo boy, the things my inlaws have said about that...).

The primary reason for his lack of popularity, is that his Glaswegian accent is pretty much unintelligible to the Japanese. My wife speaks English fluently, yet she maybe understands one word in four (or six, as his accent was a lot stronger early in his career).
The general shouting and insanity that he does is pretty much universal, hence why she's a fan even though she has to watch him with subtitles.

Wait wait, let me guess, ahem. "Wow! that movie really managed to gather together every bit of true history in it and still made it fun and exciting to watch! It was almost like seeing a movie version of my history books!" :smallbiggrin: As for accents, she shouldnt feel bad, Im american and had to watch Scarface with subtitles because I couldnt follow pachinos movie accent. Oh sure, I was able to understand most of the cockroach references, but I lost a lot of the other dialogue.

Saph
2012-06-20, 08:02 AM
Rotten Tomatoes is great and a useful tool, but it's hardly the defining metric for whether a movie is good or bad. Using that logic, Twilight (49%) was actually better than Cars 2. Which one would you rather sit through, gun to your head?

Twilight. It had prettier scenery and cooler villains.

Sorry. :smalltongue:

Dienekes
2012-06-20, 08:13 AM
Twilight. It had prettier scenery and cooler villains.

Sorry. :smalltongue:

I'd actually also go for Twilight. I'm not sure where you got that the villains were cool. But damn is that movie hilarious.

Honestly, grab a couple friends, and riff that thing to hell and back.

Saph
2012-06-20, 08:59 AM
I'd actually also go for Twilight. I'm not sure where you got that the villains were cool.

They're not, really, but they still beat out the one in Cars 2. :smalltongue:

Scowling Dragon
2012-06-20, 09:04 AM
Seriously: One of the biggest plot holes ever:

He was his own freaking competitor! How stupid was that! He made a giant plot to STOP HIMSELF.

Brother Oni
2012-06-20, 11:15 AM
Wait wait, let me guess, ahem. "Wow! that movie really managed to gather together every bit of true history in it and still made it fun and exciting to watch! It was almost like seeing a movie version of my history books!" :smallbiggrin:

Actually the history was surprisingly accurate, with a fair bit of detail going into the proper costume, forms of speech and other things.

The idealistic portrayal of the samurai was one of the things they commented on, but particularly the softening of Taka's attitude towards Algren was the main thing that set them off (in that time period, she would have been VERY xenophobic and racist).

Oh and my wife tells me she can now understand one word in two of Billy's. *Rubs tweaked ear* :smallredface:

Dumbledore lives
2012-06-20, 11:36 PM
Well I just got back from the movie and overall I liked it. Without spoiling anything the plot is kind of generic but everything else is good. It's got great dialogue, and is one of the prettiest 3D films I've seen. The dialogue was good and funny, and there were some pretty good sight gags. I mean it is no Toy Story 3 but it's a fun, funny, entertaining film and I think the critics just want it to be something it wasn't trying to be.

JadedDM
2012-06-21, 02:29 PM
Has anybody posted here that they actually want Pixar to fail, JadedDM? A couple of people have posted that they're afraid the bloom might be off the Pixar rose, especially after Cars 2 was such a blatant cash-grab, but I haven't seen a single comment to the effect that it would be in any way a good or desirable thing if Brave turned out to be as utterly dreadful as the US trailers make it look. So who are you even talking to/about?

It's a matter of attitude. Yes, nobody has outright said they want Pixar to fail; but every single time they release a new movie, so many people start predicting it will suck and that 'the reign of Pixar has finally ended.' It just strikes me that a lot of people, on some subconscious level if nothing else, want Pixar to fall.

(Also, note there's a difference in saying, "I hope Brave doesn't suck!" and "Brave is totally going to suck, guys!" I'm hearing the latter way more than the former.)

My theory is that people are so cynical, they just assume that sooner or later, Pixar must become corrupt and stop caring about art and story, and only about making gobs of money. And the anticipation is killing them, so they are subconsciously hoping it will just happen already, so they can stop dreading it.

Scowling Dragon
2012-06-21, 02:42 PM
Well I saw the movie and uh...it was alright. I still find it a bit of a blunder. It had the problems I think it would have and it just didn't reach too far.

And there where some stuff that I honestly found a bit stupid.

But it was OK. And uh...Yeah Im beginning to feel like pixar is repeating disneys fall:

Excellent movies, culminating in possibly biggest/ best movie made
A huge blunder (Pochahontas, Cars 2)
A thing that looks amazing, and is just begging to be big and important, comes so close yet falls flat due to a reliance on past tropes ( Hunchback of Notredam, Brave)
Strait to DVD movies

And im not looking forward to Monsters inc 2 (A college story)

But overall brave was what I expected. And not in a good way.

Gwyn chan 'r Gwyll
2012-06-21, 02:55 PM
If you took away the gargoyles, the Disney Hunchback of Notre Dam would have made one of my favourite movies of all time...

Scowling Dragon
2012-06-21, 03:19 PM
My thoughts exactly. Bave is similar.

Gwyn chan 'r Gwyll
2012-06-21, 03:50 PM
My thoughts exactly. Bave is similar.

Ah, now I understand you.
Shame, then... Is it possible to do a "I'm going to pretend that this part of the movie doesn't exist" kinda thing?

Scowling Dragon
2012-06-21, 03:58 PM
Thing is Hunchback had a very good atmosphere perfect for the setting. Some moments feel awesomely passionate

Brave has a different yet also good atmosphere perfect for the setting. Some moments feels awesomely passionate

Whilst hunchbacks Gargoyls where just a single terrible out of place "What where they thinking?" element, Braves problems are spread out in to many areas to ignore.

Some of the humor seems allot more "Dreamworks", the writing feels a bit tired at time (Gurl power! :smallsigh:) and it just ends so....small.

Dumbledore lives
2012-06-22, 09:37 AM
Thing is Hunchback had a very good atmosphere perfect for the setting. Some moments feel awesomely passionate

Brave has a different yet also good atmosphere perfect for the setting. Some moments feels awesomely passionate

Whilst hunchbacks Gargoyls where just a single terrible out of place "What where they thinking?" element, Braves problems are spread out in to many areas to ignore.

Some of the humor seems allot more "Dreamworks", the writing feels a bit tired at time (Gurl power! :smallsigh:) and it just ends so....small.

I didn't think anything was wrong with the ending, I mean with what they had built up they couldn't really do anything else. I would have preferred her wish to have more far reaching consequences, but they wanted to tell a smaller story and it was fine. Not spectacular, but competent I felt.

Jayngfet
2012-06-22, 08:54 PM
Just saw it. It was ...meh. I really, REALLY wanted to like this one but there was no SUBSTANCE to it. I mean it's Pixar and pixar's visual standards are so incredibly high and well funded so it looked pretty, but that's all I can possibly give it. You can tell right off exactly how the whole first half goes. Then once the magic shakes everything up a bit things go right back to predictable rather quickly. It hits every note you think it does weaker than you think it will to make a paint by the numbers strong-woman-defies-society cliche plot. Meridia is better than every warrior at archery, but somehow she's able to sword fight the king one on one and succeed, ride faster than any other character, climb impossibly tall mountains in her shiny little dress, and in general acts exactly like every tough girl with a bad personality in fiction we're expected to root for.

I mean, there WERE some good bits, I'll give it that, but they were so few and far between it was a bit disheartening. The wood carver's bits were top notch and imaginative, La Luna was a wonderful and heartwarming film that felt like it was better than the best bits of Brave, the hints of the old kingdom that weren't quite fleshed out very well seemed interesting, and as I already said the visuals were REALLY top notch, displaying the kind of technical ability and pure computational power that absolutely no other studio has been able to bring to bear in the entire history of animation.

It just feels like a film that suffers from weak writing and can't overcome the fact that it didn't come off as very well edited or reviewed before it left the initial stages.

Bulldog Psion
2012-06-23, 12:13 PM
Just saw it. It was ...meh. I really, REALLY wanted to like this one but there was no SUBSTANCE to it. I mean it's Pixar and pixar's visual standards are so incredibly high and well funded so it looked pretty, but that's all I can possibly give it. You can tell right off exactly how the whole first half goes. Then once the magic shakes everything up a bit things go right back to predictable rather quickly. It hits every note you think it does weaker than you think it will to make a paint by the numbers strong-woman-defies-society cliche plot. Meridia is better than every warrior at archery, but somehow she's able to sword fight the king one on one and succeed, ride faster than any other character, climb impossibly tall mountains in her shiny little dress, and in general acts exactly like every tough girl with a bad personality in fiction we're expected to root for.

I mean, there WERE some good bits, I'll give it that, but they were so few and far between it was a bit disheartening.

Thanks for the warning -- methinks I'll give it a pass.

Scowling Dragon
2012-06-23, 12:17 PM
but somehow she's able to sword fight the king one on one and succeed, ride faster than any other character, climb impossibly tall mountains in her shiny little dress, and in general acts exactly like every tough girl with a bad personality in fiction we're expected to root for.

To be honest as a young boy....This type of stuff really scared me. It made me feel like an inferior gender. I wanted to be a girl for a long period of time (7-10).

Point is this stuff just goes over the top.

Avilan the Grey
2012-06-23, 01:41 PM
Meridia is better than every warrior at archery, but somehow she's able to sword fight the king one on one and succeed, ride faster than any other character, climb impossibly tall mountains in her shiny little dress, and in general acts exactly like every tough girl with a bad personality in fiction we're expected to root for

I don't get this. This IS the kind of girl I like, after all.

Bulldog Psion
2012-06-23, 02:19 PM
I don't get this. This IS the kind of girl I like, after all.

Because it's a smug, ludicrous, and ultimately anonymous and boring characterization, probably.

"Oh gee, another bland, run of the mill female rebel who's able to do everything perfectly precisely because she's a girl, not because she's an accomplished individual who has a reason for being accomplished. And of course she has to be perfect at everything because she can't be a worthy, strong character except by being some generic superwoman who's more skilled than all the guys put together. And everyone else has to be an idiot and loser, because there's no way that a woman could be a strong character unless we make all the guys unmitigated doofuses." :smallsigh:

To put it another way, if you make your character stand out simply by making everyone else total losers and them an inevitable winner, it's b-o-r-i-n-g as heck whether they're male or female. Saying "it's because she's a woman" is probably even more patronizing the attitude it's supposed to be an antidote for.

Characters whose sole point is didactic tend to be shallow and obnoxious, and this sounds like it matches the description in spades.

irenicObserver
2012-06-23, 04:30 PM
I mean it is no Toy Story 3 but it's a fun, funny, entertaining film and I think the critics just want it to be something it wasn't trying to be.

This wins the thread for me. More often than not I see a lot of people erroneously comparing it to Pixar's other works. It makes sense critically but looking at each movie by itself, which intrinsically have different motivations for being told, it's a fallacious argument most of the time.

Jayngfet
2012-06-23, 04:32 PM
Because it's a smug, ludicrous, and ultimately anonymous and boring characterization, probably.

"Oh gee, another bland, run of the mill female rebel who's able to do everything perfectly precisely because she's a girl, not because she's an accomplished individual who has a reason for being accomplished. And of course she has to be perfect at everything because she can't be a worthy, strong character except by being some generic superwoman who's more skilled than all the guys put together. And everyone else has to be an idiot and loser, because there's no way that a woman could be a strong character unless we make all the guys unmitigated doofuses." :smallsigh:

To put it another way, if you make your character stand out simply by making everyone else total losers and them an inevitable winner, it's b-o-r-i-n-g as heck whether they're male or female. Saying "it's because she's a woman" is probably even more patronizing the attitude it's supposed to be an antidote for.

Characters whose sole point is didactic tend to be shallow and obnoxious, and this sounds like it matches the description in spades.

This. I mean Meridia's accomplishments even in the first 20 minutes were quite frankly ridiculous. I mean that aforementioned impossibly tall mountain WASN'T an exaggeration. She on a whim scales about 200 meters with nothing but her bare hands just to drink from a waterfall. A couple of minutes later we find out that nobody except the legendary kings of old were brave enough to do this. It's supposed to make her seem all badass and such but the fact that she on a whim does what only legendary heroes even DARED to do and does it while barely getting a mark on her clothes seems kind of appalling. I mean you'd think there would be some form of CHALLENGE to it if nothing else.

Saph
2012-06-23, 04:33 PM
Meridia is better than every warrior at archery, but somehow she's able to sword fight the king one on one and succeed, ride faster than any other character, climb impossibly tall mountains in her shiny little dress, and in general acts exactly like every tough girl with a bad personality in fiction we're expected to root for.

Yeah, that's pretty much exactly what I was afraid of. I'm going to give this one a miss.

Avilan the Grey
2012-06-23, 06:08 PM
Because it's a smug, ludicrous, and ultimately anonymous and boring characterization, probably.

...

Characters whose sole point is didactic tend to be shallow and obnoxious, and this sounds like it matches the description in spades.

So...she is Lisa Simson? (I am one of those who do not get the dislike for her, either, btw).

Seriously though, she doesn't sound worse than any run of the mill player character in an RPG (cRPG or PnP).

Dumbledore lives
2012-06-23, 08:24 PM
For everyone who says they won't see it because Merida is a fairly generic strong female protagonist, well I'd say see it and form your own opinions about it. It's a beautiful movie, but it is a small movie with entertaining characters. Honestly I spent the first 5 or so minutes staring at the main character's hair because it looked so damn good.

I'd say it is significantly better than Cars 2, but I haven't seen that so don't feel justified in comparisons.

Mauve Shirt
2012-06-23, 08:59 PM
The movie had a "Stop being a whiny teenager" message instead of a "girls can be men too" message!
Not Pixar's best, but a fine movie for children, and not nearly as Female Empowerment as I thought it would be. From the previews, I didn't know about any of the magic stuff, I really thought it was just going to be Scottish Mulan. The fairy tale was cute!

Anarion
2012-06-24, 01:17 AM
The movie had a "Stop being a whiny teenager" message instead of a "girls can be men too" message!
Not Pixar's best, but a fine movie for children, and not nearly as Female Empowerment as I thought it would be. From the previews, I didn't know about any of the magic stuff, I really thought it was just going to be Scottish Mulan. The fairy tale was cute!

So I just saw the movie and I didn't really get the whiny teenager message at all. Yes, obviously Merida and her mother fought through most of the movie, but by the ending it sort of came out that they were both right. I took more of a lesson about the importance of bonds between people, even if you really disagree with them over something.

I agree the story was a bit weak though. I think it was a very specific and sort of personal story, with less of the overarching themes that Pixar has done in some of their other movies. I really liked all the other stuff, especially the three kids, who were amazing comedy relief throughout the movie.

Scowling Dragon
2012-06-24, 01:38 AM
Pixar. Whats wrong with you? (http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/monsters_university/trailers/11168234/)

TheLaughingMan
2012-06-24, 01:41 AM
From the previews, I didn't know about any of the magic stuff, I really thought it was just going to be Scottish Mulan.

Is it wrong that I would have preferred Scottish Mulan? >_>

EDIT: I mean, Mulan is actually a rare example of a female empowerment character done right. She isn't great at everything and isn't smug, she gets to be good at things thanks to training and determination rather than movie magic, and is thanked as a brave warrior rather than having the characters go through the whole "whoa a girl saved my butt!" schtick. There's a good reason it's one of my favorite Disney Canon flicks. :smallsmile:

Dumbledore lives
2012-06-24, 01:49 AM
Pixar. Whats wrong with you? (http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/monsters_university/trailers/11168234/)

Well that's easily explainable it's um... a few bad years essentially. The good dinosaur is like a 50/50 for being decent, but their project about the mind and Dia De Los Muertos sound good, so in another few years Pixar will be back to top form. Just a few more years.

Scowling Dragon
2012-06-24, 01:55 AM
Hopefully.

Mauve Shirt
2012-06-24, 01:11 PM
Sometimes you have to make crap to pay the bills while you're making something really awesome. That's what I'm thinking and hoping is happening. Not that Brave was crap, just usual stuff.

Gnomish Wanderer
2012-06-24, 01:12 PM
I saw this last night. I enjoyed it. It wasn't all that epic, but the characters were very believable, especially Merida, and the magic was well-woven.
The only character I really disliked was the witch. It was just so contrived and cliche, especially the magic answering machine. Ugh, there are a hundred better ways that could have happened.

The Mordu reveal was excellent, as was her father's motivation throughout (have fun, kill bears :smalltongue:).

They should have held off with the 'marry whomever you want' scene, it was good of them to have the scene where she realizes her mother is right and her mother realizes she was right, but her suddenly being able to give a speech based off the pantomimes of a bear...
Overall, I'd recommend you watch it.

Fawkes
2012-06-24, 01:52 PM
I saw the movie last night and was also disappointed. While the movie isn't all bad, I hated Merida. I thought she was just despicable.

Seriously - she poisons her mother. She's either completely morally bankrupt or remarkably stupid. Or most likely both. She has no idea what this cake will do, but she has no compunctions over force-feeding it to her mother.

And then, while her mother's freaking out because she's a bear, Merida laughs at her for having difficulty adjusting to being a freaking bear.

I gotta tell ya, I've never hoped so much for a teenager to get mauled by a bear.

Faulty
2012-06-24, 08:27 PM
Hey woah bud. Spoilers there.

Mauve Shirt
2012-06-24, 08:29 PM
She has no idea what this cake will do.

Ot weel cheenge her faet!

Jayngfet
2012-06-24, 10:21 PM
Sometimes you have to make crap to pay the bills while you're making something really awesome. That's what I'm thinking and hoping is happening. Not that Brave was crap, just usual stuff.

You can say that for Cars 2 or Monsters University, but Brave has no such excuse. Brave isn't a sequel, it's their first original property in three years. Not to mention between Toy Story 3 and Cars 2 they have enough profit to make four or five "really awesome" movies and still have a bit left over.

Brave isn't something they had to do to pay the bills because the bills seem to be paid well in advance, it isn't something to do with inexperience because Pixar only hires the very best and most of the leads have at least a couple of Pixar projects on their resume already, and considering how the problems of the plot are so spread out it'd require a rather despotic executive to meddle this far when he already has five other movies to release in 2012, at least two of which had bigger budgets and higher priority.

This isn't something you can just handwave away with one of the old excuses. This was a mess-up that was entirely from the minds at Pixar and the blame can't be shifted anywhere without coming off as petulant. This was a movie Pixar HAD to want to make, had a rather large amount of freedom in making between Marvel taking Disney's focus and their own reputation, and they didn't meet the standards they'd set for previous films.

Anarion
2012-06-24, 11:58 PM
I saw the movie last night and was also disappointed. While the movie isn't all bad, I hated Merida. I thought she was just despicable.

Seriously - she poisons her mother. She's either completely morally bankrupt or remarkably stupid. Or most likely both. She has no idea what this cake will do, but she has no compunctions over force-feeding it to her mother.

And then, while her mother's freaking out because she's a bear, Merida laughs at her for having difficulty adjusting to being a freaking bear.

I gotta tell ya, I've never hoped so much for a teenager to get mauled by a bear.

Woah there. This movie deserves some legitimate criticism, but I think you're confusing carelessness with bad intent.
She is extremely upset when she flees the castle, finds the witch and asks for a spell to change her mother. It's extremely vague and it's quite clear to the audience that Merida means changing her mother's mind. She wants some magic to make her Mom understand her and let her out of the wedding. She's upset and especially naive in that scene, but she did not intend to poison anyone.




This isn't something you can just handwave away with one of the old excuses. This was a mess-up that was entirely from the minds at Pixar and the blame can't be shifted anywhere without coming off as petulant. This was a movie Pixar HAD to want to make, had a rather large amount of freedom in making between Marvel taking Disney's focus and their own reputation, and they didn't meet the standards they'd set for previous films.

This isn't an excuse per se, but the movie did switch directors mid-stream after they fired the first director. Brenda Chapman, the director who left over "creative differences," was also going to be the first female director of a major children's film of this sort, and it's possible that Pixar took a chance on her because of that and then didn't like what she produced. They were then left with half a movie and had to bring in another director to try and make a workable final product in less time than anticipated.

Nepenthe
2012-06-25, 01:16 AM
Personally, I loved it. Mostly because it slaps teenagers across the face and screams, "Your actions do have consequences! Take some mother-loving responsibility for once. Oh, and your parents? They've been around awhile. They know what they're talking about."

Think about it. For the rest of her life, Merida is going to have to explain to every castle visitor why that tapestry has been re-sewn. That's got to be humiliating.

EDIT: Also, it was fun to watch Merida ace the Gerudo challenge.

Avilan the Grey
2012-06-25, 01:17 AM
I saw the movie last night and was also disappointed. While the movie isn't all bad, I hated Merida. I thought she was just despicable.

Seriously - she poisons her mother. She's either completely morally bankrupt or remarkably stupid. Or most likely both. She has no idea what this cake will do, but she has no compunctions over force-feeding it to her mother.

And then, while her mother's freaking out because she's a bear, Merida laughs at her for having difficulty adjusting to being a freaking bear.

I gotta tell ya, I've never hoped so much for a teenager to get mauled by a bear.

Yes. because it's not like forcing your child to marry against her will is about... a hundred times more despicable? Any mother that wants to do that DESERVES being turned into a bear.


As for Monster University... I have only seen this particular trailer and I see nothing wrong with it. I laughed.

TheLaughingMan
2012-06-25, 01:21 AM
because it's not like forcing your child to marry against her will is about... a hundred times more despicable? Any mother that wants to do that DESERVES being turned into a bear.


I desperately hope you are being sarcastic.

Nepenthe
2012-06-25, 01:27 AM
Yes. because it's not like forcing your child to marry against her will is about... a hundred times more despicable? Any mother that wants to do that DESERVES being turned into a bear.


Arranged marriages worked very well for very many people for a very long time. If you can't be with the one you love, love the one you're with.

Avilan the Grey
2012-06-25, 01:28 AM
I desperately hope you are being sarcastic.

Why would I be sarcastic?


Arranged marriages worked very well for very many people for a very long time. If you can't be with the one you love, love the one you're with.

And it is illegal nowadays, because it might just as well turn into a kind of slavery.

VanBuren
2012-06-25, 02:48 AM
Arranged marriages worked very well for very many people for a very long time. If you can't be with the one you love, love the one you're with.

Yeah, but it didn't work out too well for a lot of other people. Unfortunately they didn't have a choice in the matter. I'll pass on that system, thanks.

FWIW, I enjoyed the movie. It wasn't their best, but it wasn't a bad movie by any means.

Jayngfet
2012-06-25, 02:59 AM
Arranged marriages worked very well for very many people for a very long time. If you can't be with the one you love, love the one you're with.

Yes, because an actual arranged marrige wasn't just "have a bunch of guys show up and do one thing to see who gets it" so much as it was a careful selection process the bride if nothing else had enough of a say in to actually TALK to the person in the right context beforehand, if only in brief correspondence.

Brave basically threw out a good deal of how an arranged marrige is supposed to work in order to have things be more or less morally black and white. You're supposed to root for Meridia, so all her suitors are idiots and she has no connection to any of them. For all people like to say "your actions have consequences!" is the main theme, the fact is the situation Meridia's mother forced her into was so contrived it was kind of hilarious. I mean Nepenthe is kind of forgetting that while the mother is supposed to know a thing or two, Meridia is supposed to know six or seven things by comparison.

Brother Oni
2012-06-25, 06:59 AM
Yes, because an actual arranged marrige wasn't just "have a bunch of guys show up and do one thing to see who gets it" so much as it was a careful selection process the bride if nothing else had enough of a say in to actually TALK to the person in the right context beforehand, if only in brief correspondence.

While arranged marriages these days are as you've said in many cultures, back in medieval times, things were rather different and princesses or other female children of nobility were little more than pieces of political collateral.

Having not seen Brave yet, I can't comment on Meridia's exact status and her expected role, but bear in mind that cultural relativity and anachronisms appear to be abound in the movie.

pendell
2012-06-25, 08:39 AM
Well, I saw the movie this weekend with my wife. Theater was packed with young females. I had to wait outside for a bit, so I got a good look as to who was and wasn't going into the theater, and it was mostly mothers and daughters.

"Brave" is a movie about two strong women.

The title character, Merida, is of course your tomboy and a strong woman. A "warrior-hero" with XX chromosomes.

Her mother, however, is also a strong woman, but of a different sort. She is a strong woman in the classic sense, the queen of the castle. You watch the byplay and the relationships, and it's obvious that she is the authority figure in the castle, more so than her husband is. She rules not by strength of arm but by elegance and by example, by her sheer personality dominating a roomful of men, each of whom is able to break her in one hand if they had a mind to it. But they never will, of course. She is Mom, and she knows the button in all men's heads that instantly makes them disobedient children in front of mom again.

The two of them each are partly right ... and partly wrong.

Merida, of course, is being forced into a role that fits her about as well as a shirt fits a wolverine, or a tire fits a fish, and she rebels against it.

Mom, however, knows there is a reason for them doing things the way they do. Underneath the jolly caber tossing and haymaking is a bloody clan society ready to flare up at the smallest excuse. The last time a royal tried to change their traditions, the result was a bloody four-way civil war.

As mom might rightfully ask, but never did, "So how many people have to die so you can shoot a bow?"


They both have a certain amount of right on their side. They both are certain of their rights and blind to their faults, and when the irresistible force of obstinate daughter encounters the immovable object of dominating mother, the fireworks are amazing.

The culminating scene, for me, is when they have their big blowup at the archery tournament. The daughter takes her sword and cuts her mother out of the family tapestry, essentially murdering her in heart, wanting her to go away and never come back. The mother, for her part, burns her daughter's bow, a spiteful act designed to hurt. To take the one thing Merida loves more than anything else in the world -- the symbol of her pride, her strength, her independence -- and destroy it. It's the kind of thing only the one who knows you best can do, hurt you in a way a stranger never could.

The rest of the movie is consumed with repairing that broken relationship. Without giving away the story, both mother and daughter are forced to confront a world where the mother is -- gone. They have to decide what that means to them, and then they have to decide whether they should pursue the path of reconciliation and of healing, which means that both have to be willing to compromise, or if they are going to follow the path of estrangement.

It's a worthy movie, on those terms. Not their best work, perhaps, but not the bottom of the barrel either. And even the bottom of the barrel from Pixar is light years ahead of much other entertainment out there.

Respectfully,

Brian P.

PS. The soundtrack was awesome -- BDP.

Cheesegear
2012-06-25, 09:08 AM
So, I'll agree with nearly everyone here and say that I was disappointed. Not that the movie was bad. Just, not as good as it maybe could have been. Act 1 was brilliant. Culminating in the mother-daughter fight that is a staple of the genre.

But then Merida does something not only stupid, but also quite evil. And then it gets pretty stupid from there.

Act 1 was good. Act 2 was pretty awful and all's I could really do was think about how much better Brother Bear is. Act 3 pulled it back up to 'acceptable' and not entirely a movie I wish I didn't see.

But, yeah. Go watch Brother Bear.

Avilan the Grey
2012-06-25, 12:25 PM
So, I'll agree with nearly everyone here and say that I was disappointed. Not that the movie was bad. Just, not as good as it maybe could have been. Act 1 was brilliant. Culminating in the mother-daughter fight that is a staple of the genre.

But then Merida does something not only stupid, but also quite evil. And then it gets pretty stupid from there.

Act 1 was good. Act 2 was pretty awful and all's I could really do was think about how much better Brother Bear is. Act 3 pulled it back up to 'acceptable' and not entirely a movie I wish I didn't see.

But, yeah. Go watch Brother Bear.

I have not seen it, but i refuse to believe it is as bad as Broher Bear. From what I have heard I think I will like it a lot.

Meridia do something very very stupid, but not out of line of a seriously desperate and pissed teenager. Her mother, on the other hand seems to be doing something of less dire consequences, but is also both petty and evil.

pendell
2012-06-25, 12:30 PM
Meridia do something very very stupid, but not out of line of a seriously desperate and pissed teenager.


Maredia is obviously not a D&D veteran and has never had her wish twisted in a horrible way.


She specifically wished for her mom's mind to be changed. That was the intent of what she wanted, and she expected the witch to give her what she *wanted*, not what she *asked for*.

She intended for her mom to give her her way. She never intended to take away her mother's humanity. It simply never entered her mind, and she was horrorstruck by the result.


Hopefully she has now learned that the only safe wish is for a million gold pieces, in a bag, on the ground, in front of her.

:)

Respectfully,

Brian P.

TheLaughingMan
2012-06-25, 01:25 PM
Hopefully she has now learned that the only safe wish is for a million gold pieces, in a bag, on the ground, in front of her.

:)

Respectfully,

Brian P.

...That are alive and angry! Mwahaha!

Anarion
2012-06-25, 01:31 PM
...That are alive and angry! Mwahaha!

You're trying too hard. You can give the person the exact million gold pieces they expect. But those million gold pieces don't come from out of nowhere. They come from someone else, who is upset about losing them and will track you down.

At any rate, I agree with Pendell and Avilan that Merida did something that was extremely negligent, even reckless, but she never had an evil intent.

erikun
2012-06-25, 02:14 PM
Well I just got back from the movie, and I enjoyed it.

I'm not quite sure why people were saying bad things about it; I certainly didn't see any problems sitting through it. I could certainly see a problem if someone was expecting a women's liberation film, because it certainly isn't that. Rather, it is much more a coming-of-age story and dealing with an unfair world - with the added bit of the main character being wrong as well. Far too often I see these stories with the moral of the teenager/young adult always coming off correct or in the right, and so having Merida not be right in her position - of just because she was arguing against something wrong, didn't automatically make her stance correct - was a nice angle and a change in the typical story.

And I'm not just talking about Merida's "oops I did something wrong, and now need to fix it" either. You see in the movie that her whole stance was pretty much wrong, and she needed to change it as much as everyone else did.

I would recommend the movie to anyone who asks.

A few more spoilery notes about the movie:
I am glad to see the three boys not overused in the movie. I seem to recall their bear-transformations from a trailer, and upon them first finding the cake was worried that the rest of the movie would be filled with bear-cub antics. Pixar has a bad habit of minor bit-characters getting a lot of unnecessary screentime (the dogs in Up, the goofy robots in WALL-E) and they seem to have hit the right amount of screentime with the brothers.

There were times, especially in the beginning, where everything seemed fuzzy and out of focus. Perhaps this was just the 2D version, and I'm sure the 3D version came out beautifully. But the lack of focusing on any one point gave me a bit of a headache in trying to get the picture into focus. They weren't frequent, thankfully. I hope this isn't a 'subtle' "encouragement" to get people to watch 3D versions, because I certainly wouldn't want to see more of it in the future.

Re: Merida's amazing warrior feats
I didn't take her actions as terribly amazing or heroic, really. She's good at archery, and rather athletic. That's pretty much it. Her beating eveyone else at archery isn't surprising, as that's exactly why she chose such a contest: so that she could enter herself and beat them at it.

As for climing up the cliff and drinking from the waterfall, I was under the impression that only great heroes had drank from the falls, not that only great heroes had climbed up the cliff. And it seems like it was a ceremonial reason for doing so, rather than an act of bravery in itself. Merida climbing up and taking a drink herself is just showing off her brashness, rather than doing something nearly impossible for most people to accomplish.

[/Opinion]

The Glyphstone
2012-06-25, 02:21 PM
Maredia is obviously not a D&D veteran and has never had her wish twisted in a horrible way.


She specifically wished for her mom's mind to be changed. That was the intent of what she wanted, and she expected the witch to give her what she *wanted*, not what she *asked for*.

She intended for her mom to give her her way. She never intended to take away her mother's humanity. It simply never entered her mind, and she was horrorstruck by the result.


Hopefully she has now learned that the only safe wish is for a million gold pieces, in a bag, on the ground, in front of her.

:)

Respectfully,

Brian P.


...That are alive and angry! Mwahaha!


You're trying too hard. You can give the person the exact million gold pieces they expect. But those million gold pieces don't come from out of nowhere. They come from someone else, who is upset about losing them and will track you down.


Also, you're on fire, because you didn't specify to not be on fire. That's important.:smallbiggrin:

Weirdlet
2012-06-25, 02:41 PM
Just saw it yesterday, and I very much enjoyed it. Not ground-breaking, but very well put-together, and striking an excellent balance of elements that are usually badly overused in films like this.

Fawkes
2012-06-25, 03:37 PM
Yes, because it's not like forcing your child to marry against her will is about... a hundred times more despicable? Any mother that wants to do that DESERVES being turned into a bear.


I'm going to emphatically disagree with you on this point. Not because I endorse arranged marriages - it's an ugly practice that has been largely abandoned for good reason. If the story was set in contemporary society, and the mother was trying to set up her daughter with an arranged marriage, I would naturally object.

But it's not. The story is set in the medieval highlands, and arranged marriage is simply How Things Are. The mother isn't trying to marry her daughter off for personal gain, she setting her up in an arranged marriage because that's how it's done. Yes, it's a flawed system, but it's what she went through, and it worked for the best for her. The movie never makes any suggestion that the mother is doing anything other than what she believes is best for her daughter and her people.

And how does the movie treat her?
Her daughter poisons her, she turns into a bear, and then her terrifying kafkaesque nightmare is played for laughs.

I also have no idea what convinced her to change her position on the arranged marriage. Is the lesson here is if you poison your parents, they'll let you do whatever you want?

Don't get me wrong, abandoning the practice was definitely the Right Choice, especially considering there don't seem to be any consequences of the decision, at all. I just wish the movie had spent more time developing that conflict, instead of abandoning it for bear shenanigans.

Alabenson
2012-06-25, 03:38 PM
After having seen it, my reaction was that Brave was...alright.
It was certainly watchable, and for the most part enjoyable, but it wasn't Pixar at its best. Some of the elements of the movie Mordu, the witch didn't really seem to neatly fit in with the rest of the story, and I found their resolution to be rather unsatisfactory.

Overall, though, I'd give the movie about a B, maybe a B+. Not as good as Pixar can be, but far better than Madagascar 3 or the upcoming Ice Age movie (seriously, how the *buysomeapples* do those series keep getting sequels?)

pendell
2012-06-25, 03:56 PM
And how does the movie treat her?
Her daughter poisons her, she turns into a bear, and then her terrifying kafkaesque nightmare is played for laughs.

I also have no idea what convinced her to change her position on the arranged marriage. Is the lesson here is if you poison your parents, they'll let you do whatever you want?

Don't get me wrong, abandoning the practice was definitely the Right Choice, especially considering there don't seem to be any consequences of the decision, at all. I just wish the movie had spent more time developing that conflict, instead of abandoning it for bear shenanigans.



It's not a nightmare just for Elinor. Merida goes right out into the wild with her.

Merida could have been rid of her mother forever. All she had to back in the castle was scream "A BEAR!" at the top of her lungs, and the men would have driven the mother off. And she'd have never seen her again.

She didn't do that. Instead, she went into the wild with her, going to great pains and putting herself at personal risk of being eaten by her mother when she's in an 'animal' mood. She went through a great deal of trouble and effort to see her mother made whole again, to right the wrong she'd done.

I think that is what changed the mother's mind. Not being turned into a bear. I think it was Merida going with her and looking after her and showing her how to hunt with a bow and arrow and otherwise demonstrating that underneath the whiny teenager was a mature adult waiting to break out.

But that young adult was a person *different* from Elanor. For the first time, Mum saw her daughter as a "real person", and not simply as Elinor 2.0, brought up to fit in a particular role.

Merida and her mother had a quarrel to the point of ending their relationship. What they learned from this was:

1) That no matter how bad things are, there are few things worth ending a relationship over.

2) They both learned to be properly assertive in their relationship with each other, because in the end they're on the same side. Merida learned to stand up for what she believed without resorting to destructive behavior in the process, and Mum learned to respect her daughter's wishes and not simply assume she's a whiny brat to be pushed into line whether she liked it or not.

So on the whole I think Merida learned the right lesson. Neither a meek, submissive craven who would willingly do whatever she was told just because an authority figure told her to do it. That way lies Just Following Orders. But neither did she simply rebel for the sake of rebelling, believing that her mother was a fool who knew nothing. They learned to *respect* each other, and that's something some families never learn.


Respectfully,

Brian P.

Karoht
2012-06-25, 04:00 PM
Well, I just saw the film this weekend. Made a birthday party out of it for my 28 year old fiance.
Breakfast (down at a pub we know and love)
Brave (because it's Brave)
Ice Cream at Marble Slab (because it's easier to manage in a theater than cake)


The best part of the party was the film. Truly, it was in fact rather good.
Granted, I didn't cry, I didn't tear up at anything, but it felt full of emotion, and not just once in a while, but quite often. Most films have a peak like that, that moment that brings one to tears. This film didn't have that for me, but there was incredible amounts of emotion at play, in just about every scene.
I was waiting for Merida to do something truly epic and brave, and that didn't exactly happen as I anticipated, but then I realized that
...sneaking a bear past the bear killing king...
took some pretty sizable courage and wits.

I think the message it conveyed best was that Bravery and courage are not about the lack of fear, or throwing caution to the wind, or lack of consequences. But also that Bravery has to be tempered with compassion, conviction, intelligence and cunning, self control, and great inner strength rather than just outer strength. That the best heroes have great deeds behind them, but great humility and respect to go along with their well earned pride in themselves.

And the animation was incredible. As someone pointed out, it may not have been groundbreaking, but the scenery, the sense of play about the lighting, some of the water effects, even things like the sense of texture about the various furs, it all worked wonderfully. It might be Pixars best in terms of cinemetography and composition, it might be their best in terms of all the little details, not just the big ones. It might not be their best in terms of storytelling, but the acting throughout was on the mark. Never over the top (except maybe the king exaggerating because he's telling a story that he is, well, exaggerating), but never flat.

Jayngfet
2012-06-25, 04:11 PM
While arranged marriages these days are as you've said in many cultures, back in medieval times, things were rather different and princesses or other female children of nobility were little more than pieces of political collateral.


Well yeah, if you're gonna take it out of context it's kinda sad. The thing you aren't realizing is that in an arranged marriage the guy also has no choice. Feudal societies tended to be the sort of places where nobody had a whole lot of choice. I mean a woman might have to spend all day tending kids or something but if Meridia was a guy she'd need to get married anyway and then either go to war or manage lands or both, and he didn't have any say in the matter either.

That's really why Meridia comes off as such a brat I think. She thinks she's the only one without total freedom and even in the trailers she just sits there and mocks the the suitors for not being good at a contest she invented just to be better than them at. She never actually bothers thinking about anybody else in the entire movie in a positive way until maybe at the end with her mom, and then at he end where she can stand to be within 20 feet of her suitors without sneering.

Karoht
2012-06-25, 04:44 PM
Well yeah, if you're gonna take it out of context it's kinda sad. The thing you aren't realizing is that in an arranged marriage the guy also has no choice.Not to get too political in this discussion, but at the end of the day in an arranged marriage back then, the male usually had the majority of the freedom once he was married. He would leave the wife at home to deal with the issues at hand, while he at least COULD go off and do things like hunt or attend/participate in tournament, and for the most part, would.



I mean a woman might have to spend all day tending kids or something but if Meridia was a guy she'd need to get married anyway and then either go to war or manage lands or both, and he didn't have any say in the matter either.Except that he had all the rights and privilages of landownership (and being male) while the lady had neither, and all the responsibilities/expectations of managing a castle (quite a bit of work actually, even if they had a good staff of servants) and raising a family.



That's really why Meridia comes off as such a brat I think. She thinks she's the only one without total freedom and even in the trailers she just sits there and mocks the the suitors for not being good at a contest she invented just to be better than them at.Funny, their fathers all talked up their prowess in warfare, yet it is unreasonable to suggest that even ONE of them know how to shoot a bow? Even if she didn't plan on besting them, her selecting Archery on it's own was rather clever in demonstrating their ineptitude.



She never actually bothers thinking about anybody else in the entire movie in a positive way until maybe at the end with her mom, and then at he end where she can stand to be within 20 feet of her suitors without sneering.Uh, dude, did you look at her suitors? I think most of the audience was sneering at them. Did you somehow miss the one who had a temper tantrum in the middle of the archery contest?


And this is before we even consider that behind closed doors, any of those suitors could just deem to exert his will and take away any and all of her freedoms at any time. They could be abusive both verbally or physically, they could ignore her completely, they could do any number of things to her, all of which would be considered normal and within his rights to do, no matter how abusive we might deem it today.

The suitors are equally screwed by arranged marriage? Pfffft. What a joke. If you want to make statements like that I would really strongly recommend you read a history book or two first.

Scowling Dragon
2012-06-25, 04:45 PM
It is a joke. But it just feels patronizing considering the context.

Anarion
2012-06-25, 05:10 PM
It is a joke. But it just feels patronizing considering the context.

Patronizing? To whom? The context is that Merida is actually way more skilled than all three of those guys and tradition says that not only is she disallowed from demonstrating it, but one of three inept people gets to marry her, which, in that age, means basically rights to have conjugal relations with her at any time they feel like it, not to mention all the abuse mentioned by Karoht.

Which part of that is patronizing?


I'm going to emphatically disagree with you on this point. Not because I endorse arranged marriages - it's an ugly practice that has been largely abandoned for good reason. If the story was set in contemporary society, and the mother was trying to set up her daughter with an arranged marriage, I would naturally object.

But it's not. The story is set in the medieval highlands, and arranged marriage is simply How Things Are. The mother isn't trying to marry her daughter off for personal gain, she setting her up in an arranged marriage because that's how it's done. Yes, it's a flawed system, but it's what she went through, and it worked for the best for her. The movie never makes any suggestion that the mother is doing anything other than what she believes is best for her daughter and her people.

And how does the movie treat her?
Her daughter poisons her, she turns into a bear, and then her terrifying kafkaesque nightmare is played for laughs.

I also have no idea what convinced her to change her position on the arranged marriage. Is the lesson here is if you poison your parents, they'll let you do whatever you want?

Don't get me wrong, abandoning the practice was definitely the Right Choice, especially considering there don't seem to be any consequences of the decision, at all. I just wish the movie had spent more time developing that conflict, instead of abandoning it for bear shenanigans.

You're not thinking about this correctly, so let's take a step back.
You said
Yes, it's a flawed system, but it's what she went through, and it worked for the best for her.

So, what we have is one person who went through an acknowledged flawed system, but it worked for her. That does not, in any way, justify the flawed system. Indeed, it actually reflects more poorly on the mother than simply saying she didn't understand her daughter. It implies that Merida's mother was not intelligent enough or creative enough to even think about what she was doing. It was a system that had worked once, so therefore that's the only way to do things.

Now, if nobody ever raised an objection to arranged marriages, then I would grant you that people just adhere to tradition. But Merida did raise an objection. And her mother brushed her off without any consideration. Not only that, but we have a conclusive result from what actually happened in the movie that breaking tradition would not lead to all out war. Now, you can argue about how easily they could have predicted the fact that breaking tradition would have worked out, and I think it's possible that a thoughtful consideration of the issue before the trials for Merida's hand would have convinced her to go along with the marriage. In fact, I'm pretty sure that confronting Merida with the possibility of having blood on her hands because of her willfulness would have convinced her to go along with it.

But that didn't happen. Merida's mother never considered her daughter's position and never thought about any alternatives to arranged marriage. In fact she barely listened to her own daughter at all.

Being turned into a bear is not the point, that's just the way that the story went because it's amusing and leads to beautiful imagery. The point is that the circumstances of the story lead Merida and her mother to actually pay attention to each other, in a context that removed their preexisting biases. That allowed them to come to a better understanding, and when they reached that understanding, it was the mother who changed her position on the tradition.

Huh, thanks Fawkes. Writing that response to you, I've actually talked myself into thinking this was a much better movie than I did when I walked out of it. There was a pretty good lesson there.

Jayngfet
2012-06-25, 06:13 PM
Not to get too political in this discussion, but at the end of the day in an arranged marriage back then, the male usually had the majority of the freedom once he was married. He would leave the wife at home to deal with the issues at hand, while he at least COULD go off and do things like hunt or attend/participate in tournament, and for the most part, would.

There's plenty of documentation showing that women were capable of riding and hunting and shooting themselves. They weren't expected to do it at the tournament level but it was something they COULD do. Really depending on the specific era of history there were plenty of things for women to do, some of which it was more acceptable for them to do than husbands of similar rank.



Except that he had all the rights and privilages of landownership (and being male) while the lady had neither, and all the responsibilities/expectations of managing a castle (quite a bit of work actually, even if they had a good staff of servants) and raising a family.


He also had the responsibilities of them as well. It's not like those things come free. In both cases you spent the majority of your life dictated by duty and responsibilities that were thrust upon you at birth from rank and gender. I mean yeah, managing a castle might suck, but so did leaving it for months or years on end if a war broke out or some major issue came up. Or hell, fighting in a war and earning the castle in the first place.




Funny, their fathers all talked up their prowess in warfare, yet it is unreasonable to suggest that even ONE of them know how to shoot a bow? Even if she didn't plan on besting them, her selecting Archery on it's own was rather clever in demonstrating their ineptitude.


One of them did. Mister Temper Tantrum didn't exactly hit bullseye, but he was close enough that on a living target larger than the average pigeon he'd still have landed a hit. In any case, none of them claimed to be proficient in a bow to begin with. They probably should have been better at it than they were, but it's still kind of unfair to test them at a task you know they don't have any particular skill in, especially when it's proven later in the movie you could probably beat them in the ones they DO have skill in.



Uh, dude, did you look at her suitors? I think most of the audience was sneering at them. Did you somehow miss the one who had a temper tantrum in the middle of the archery contest?


Yeah, but we weren't exactly laughing with Meridia either. The only reason she came off looking any better than they did was that we had her POV. She doesn't exactly have a moral high-ground when nobody else has a choice and she threatens outright war with her actions.



And this is before we even consider that behind closed doors, any of those suitors could just deem to exert his will and take away any and all of her freedoms at any time. They could be abusive both verbally or physically, they could ignore her completely, they could do any number of things to her, all of which would be considered normal and within his rights to do, no matter how abusive we might deem it today.

The suitors are equally screwed by arranged marriage? Pfffft. What a joke. If you want to make statements like that I would really strongly recommend you read a history book or two first.

I've taken history classes at the university level and read enough books on history to fill multiple bookcases. You aren't winning if it comes to a battle of knowledge. Right now in this couple of paragraphs you've resorted to maybe's and hypotheticals which are in no way supported by the movie or characterization.

I'm not just saying they're equally screwed by marriage, I'm saying they're screwed by the entire society for their whole lives. A feudal society isn't exactly a nice place to live because EVERYONE is beholden to someone Else's whims unless MAYBE you make it to king, and even then you have to deal with other major figures. That's how it works. Claiming that a noblewoman had it worse off than her husband is to ignore all the stuff her husband had to do when they weren't together. He might have a higher status but that status was expected to be paid for in literal sweat and blood and higher levels of accountability.

Fawkes
2012-06-25, 08:33 PM
You're not thinking about this correctly, so let's take a step back.

-snip-

Huh, thanks Fawkes. Writing that response to you, I've actually talked myself into thinking this was a much better movie than I did when I walked out of it. There was a pretty good lesson there.

Glad I could be of service. :smalltongue:

And, the main thing I object to from your argument is the idea that I'm not looking at this 'correctly'. For the most part, I agree with you.

Let's break it down:


So, what we have is one person who went through an acknowledged flawed system, but it worked for her. That does not, in any way, justify the flawed system.

I agree, and that was not the meaning I intended to convey.


Indeed, it actually reflects more poorly on the mother than simply saying she didn't understand her daughter. It implies that Merida's mother was not intelligent enough or creative enough to even think about what she was doing. It was a system that had worked once, so therefore that's the only way to do things.

I feel like you're oversimplifying here, but then again, the movie does too. I'll come back to this in a second.


Now, if nobody ever raised an objection to arranged marriages, then I would grant you that people just adhere to tradition. But Merida did raise an objection. And her mother brushed her off without any consideration. Not only that, but we have a conclusive result from what actually happened in the movie that breaking tradition would not lead to all out war.

This is actually something I had a huge problem with. I thought the way the movie resolved the arranged marriage was insultingly easy. That was the underlying conflict upon which the rest of the movie was predicated, and resolving it so simply with an awkward speech made the rest of the movie feel a lot weaker. I feel like that was a much more interesting conflict than 'oops my mom is a bear'.


Now, you can argue about how easily they could have predicted the fact that breaking tradition would have worked out, and I think it's possible that a thoughtful consideration of the issue before the trials for Merida's hand would have convinced her to go along with the marriage. In fact, I'm pretty sure that confronting Merida with the possibility of having blood on her hands because of her willfulness would have convinced her to go along with it.

But that didn't happen. Merida's mother never considered her daughter's position and never thought about any alternatives to arranged marriage. In fact she barely listened to her own daughter at all.

I really wish it had. I think the movie would have been much stronger if it had spent more time dealing with the consequences of what breaking the tradition would have been, and then having the characters come together in spite of that and overcoming the obstacles together. I also would have appreciated if the final obstacle they had to overcome was something related to the rest of the story, as opposed to a random encounter with a Dire Bear.

[quote]Being turned into a bear is not the point, that's just the way that the story went because it's amusing and leads to beautiful imagery. The point is that the circumstances of the story lead Merida and her mother to actually pay attention to each other, in a context that removed their preexisting biases. That allowed them to come to a better understanding, and when they reached that understanding, it was the mother who changed her position on the tradition.[quote]

I understand it's not the point, which sort of makes it worse. I feel like the movie sacrificed depth for a contrived and ultimately pointless detour into Bear Country that I personally didn't find amusing. Now, I admit that my personal enjoyment is a completely subjective quality, but the whole time the movie is trying to make Elinor's transformation comedic and amusing, I couldn't help but find the whole thing uncomfortable. It couldn't help thinking about how existentially terrifying it would be to suddenly find your self in the body of a strange creature.

Also, for a movie about two people coming together through unfortunate circumstances, changing only one of the two put an imbalance on it. If the movie's message is that both of them need to understand each other, why would only one of them suffer? It'd be like if in Freaky Friday, only the mother turned into a teenager. And if the message was only that the mother needed to see from her daughter's point of view, well, I feel like that's a gross oversimplification.

Well, that's a wall of text for you. If you don't mind another, here's an in-depth list of changes that I think would have improved the movie.


First, some things I'd like to see added to the first act, to better set the scene.

I think we could have used a more concrete idea of what Merida actually wanted, aside from 'not an arranged marriage'. Now, she's a teenager, she doesn't need to have her life figured out, but what are her dreams? Does she want to be like her father, and rule over her people like a king? Does she want to lead her people into battle? Or does she just want to be a warrior? All we really know is she likes horse riding, climbing, and archery. But those aren't dreams, those are hobbies. Instead of that montage of her being a free spirit, why not show her confiding in someone, either her father, or someone outside of her family, and establish what her goals actually are.
I would have liked to see some actual characterization of the suitors. At the end of the movie, they immediately agree to forgo the contest in favor of choice. Why don't we establish early on that at least some of them have some reservations about the ordeal as well? Maybe one of them has a crush on someone else, one of the others isn't ready for betrothal, and one of them would prefer to win Merida's heart romantically?
We needed to establish why the arranged marriage was thought to be necessary. There's hints that there could be violence or unrest if the marriage doesn't go through, but this is abandoned by the second act. There needs to be a threat of consequences to the conflict, or there's no victory in overcoming them.
Finally, have Merida and her mother argue more directly in the first act. If we've established both of their motives better (see above) then they have plenty of weight behind their arguments.


Next, some bigger divergences. There's a couple different ways I could see the second acts going instead, that I think would have been stronger.


First, and closest to the original movie: instead asking the witch to specifically change her mother, Merida asks her to change her fate. The witch complies, and changes both Elinor and Merida into bears that night. The two of them work together to escape the castle, and spend the second act together, trying to work together to figure out how to undo the spell. As they are both bears, they can still communicate, and continue to argue.

They discover the ruins and encounter Mor'du, who has fully embraced his bearness, but is not completely feral. With Mor'du, they discover the way to break the spell, and the three of them embark to do so. They face several challenges which they overcome together. Upon reaching the end of their quest, they are betrayed by Mor'du, who intends to break his own spell and take over the highlands himself. Elinor, who through to this point has remained dainty and ladylike, even in bear form, fiercely defends her daughter, and is badly hurt by Mor'du. Merida is faced with the choice between going after Mor'du and breaking her curse, or helping her mother. Realizing that her mother has always been trying to protect her, Merida goes to save her, and Elinor fully realizes that Merida is much more than a selfish teenager. The two reconcile, both apologizing, as Mor'du breaks the curse. He reverts to a human form, but the many years his life was prolonged by the magic catch up to him, and he withers away into dust (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-DGFuHC75aY).

With Mor'du gone, Merida and Elinor are able to remove their curse together, and set home. They return to find their home on the verge of a civil war, which leads into the final act, which I'll detail in a moment.


Another, more drastically different path for the second act, would be to completely remove the witch. Instead, the major inciting incident is the archery contest. Merida humiliates the three suitors so badly that their fathers, furious, declare war. Fergus assembles his troops and rides out into battle, leaving Merida behind with Elinor. Merida wants to go out and fight alongside her father, but Elinor forbids it. Merida sneaks out, but Elinor chases after her to bring her back. During the chase, they get lost, and their horses get spooked and run off without them. The two of them are stuck in the middle of nowhere, alone, and have to work together to find their way back.

The two continue to fight, but Merida impresses her mother with her survival skills. The two slowly start to bond, and Elinor shows that she's not completely without her skills. Together, they make their way back home, overcoming many natural obstacles. Finally, when they've almost made it home, they come across the stone circle and find Mor'du (who, in this version, is just a big scary bear who took her father's leg).

Merida tries to fight the bear, but the beast just shrugs off her arrows. As the bear advances on her, Elinor attracts its attention, and gets it to chase her, telling Merida to run. The bear chases down Elinor, and backs her up into one of the stone pillars. The bear is about to finish her off when Merida catches up and leaps onto the bear's back, holding onto one of the swords embedded into its back. The bear shakes, throwing her off, and the sword comes loose from the bear's back and falls to the ground. The bear turns back on Elinor, who grabs the blade and faces down the bear, stepping backward and slashing at its paws as it swipes at her. She leads him the cracked stone pillar, back up against it, and dodges out of the way as Mor'du lunges. The bear smashes into the pillar, and brings it tumbling down onto himself.

Merida and Elinor, both hurt from the fight, embrace and realize they would do anything for each other. They fully reconcile, and finally return home. At the castle, they discover that Fergus is about to attack the other chief, and quickly ride out to stop him. They arrive at the battlefield where the two armies are about to face off, and ride between them, momentarily halting the charge.


Finally, either way we've gotten here, we have this for the final act:


Understanding why her mother wanted her betrothed, Merida resigns herself to the marriage, and announces to the gathered tribes that she has made her choice. However, before she announces her choice, Elinor interrupts, and says her daughter will not be put into an arranged marriage. Instead of pantomiming a speech to Merida as in the original movie, Elinor is the one who delivers the speech. The three tribe leaders are furious. Fergus stands up with his wife and daughter, and backs them up, saying that anyone who disagrees will have to fight with him. Just when it appears that the three chiefs are going to take him up on it, the sons speak up, finally admitting that they weren't crazy about the idea either. (Which hopefully we've established earlier, as I noted above). They each convince their fathers to back down, and the chiefs reluctantly follow their son's wishes. This, instead of the bear fight, is the final conflict of the movie. In the end, the chiefs leave in peace, and all the children are free to make their own choices. In the final scenes, we see one of the suitors pursuing someone more their type, and another one perhaps staying to try wooing Merida his own way.


So, that's my pitch for how I would have done it.

Now, again, I'm not saying that Brave was a terrible movie, or even a bad movie, really. It was decent. But it wasn't the movie I wanted. And I understand that that's a subjective thing, but I really think the movie could have been better. Feel free to disagree.

Mauve Shirt
2012-06-25, 09:58 PM
Of course, you have to remember that it's a kid's movie. Yes, Pixar's good at making family movies, but most families don't want their young children watching a terrible bloody conflict resulting from the spunky female protagonist not wanting to adhere to primitive morality.

erikun
2012-06-25, 11:16 PM
So, that's my pitch for how I would have done it.

Now, again, I'm not saying that Brave was a terrible movie, or even a bad movie, really. It was decent. But it wasn't the movie I wanted. And I understand that that's a subjective thing, but I really think the movie could have been better. Feel free to disagree.
I have to disagree. :smallwink: I movie had a heavy since of allegory, and I felt tha spending most of the time on the "sub-plot" of the allegory really told the overreaching background storyline just as well as a more realistic, detailed movie focusing on the background would.

Queen Elinor was turned into a bear, a big and cuddly and slightly incompetent character who occasionally acts violently towards Merida. This comes out exactly now Merida sees her mom - a big, strong, lovable person who is somewhat incompetent at taking care of herself (in the wild, where Merida is most comfortable), someone who puts needless priorities over practicalities, and someone who will occasionally turn into a rampaging monster that does nothing but hurt Merida.

It also gives a highlight to Queen Elinor's position: a person who was thrust into a position she doesn't know how to handle, given a skillset that is not at all useful, and being forced to possibly hurting her own daughter by the situation she was thrust into. Elinor didn't want to hurt Merida and certainly didn't want her to be married off against her will, but the country was threatening to tear itself apart in civil war and have no defense if outside invaders attacked. Merida's marriage isn't some evil plot, but it's supposed to be the tradition that holds the country together.

And speaking of tradition, that's pretty much the role Mor'du plays. He's the big evil thing lurking throughout the movie, something that scares Queen Elinor and keeps going after Merida, something that isn't be dealt with by simply hacking away at it but by Queen Elinor standing up to Mor'du (tradition) and keeping it from hurting her daughter.


As for the three suiters, they could have been fleshed out more, and should have been... if this were a book. For a movie, I think they worked out surprisingly well. I had a very good sense that none of them were interested in this tradition any more than Merida was, simply because of their body language every time we saw them. All three of them seemed to have an attitude of silent compliance, caring very little about the whole proposal and tournament - even the angry prince (his name escapes me) was apparently more angry at his inability to make a good shot than anything regarding the prize.

As for Merida saying that she'd break from tradition, it only worked because the suiters were there to state their agreement. It is pretty clear that they wouldn't have objected against their fathers' wills on their own, much less made a case for it if Merida wasn't standing right there making her case.

For that matter, it did need to be Merida who did so. She was the new bride, and it was her case to make. Queen Elinor had already long accepted her position in her arranged marriage, and having the queen declare that the arranged marriage was over would bring a very different tone to the story - one that, no matter what, you cannot change what the system has set out for you, and the only thing you are capable of is to talk an adult into changing it for you.

[Edit]
I do agree with you in some parts. The witch was kind of silly and pretty unnecessary, especially with the potion-answering cauldron. I wouldn't say it detracted from the story that much, though, and it seemed mostly played for comedy value.

[EditEdit]
Mor'du is also a good example of what happened the last time someone tried to recklessly have their independence from the kingdom. Like Merida, he felt constrained by his position and like Merida, he decided to take a reckless selfish path that ended his country. It was supposed to point out that Merida's solution needs to be more than simple independence - she needs to have that independence while still living up to her responsibilities, not casting them aside. I would've liked to see more story focused on Mor'du, as it is pretty clear his failure is supposed to be an important contrast to Merida's later decisions.

Anarion
2012-06-25, 11:37 PM
Glad I could be of service. :smalltongue:

And, the main thing I object to from your argument is the idea that I'm not looking at this 'correctly'. For the most part, I agree with you.

Let's break it down:



I agree, and that was not the meaning I intended to convey.



I feel like you're oversimplifying here, but then again, the movie does too. I'll come back to this in a second.



This is actually something I had a huge problem with. I thought the way the movie resolved the arranged marriage was insultingly easy. That was the underlying conflict upon which the rest of the movie was predicated, and resolving it so simply with an awkward speech made the rest of the movie feel a lot weaker. I feel like that was a much more interesting conflict than 'oops my mom is a bear'.



I really wish it had. I think the movie would have been much stronger if it had spent more time dealing with the consequences of what breaking the tradition would have been, and then having the characters come together in spite of that and overcoming the obstacles together. I also would have appreciated if the final obstacle they had to overcome was something related to the rest of the story, as opposed to a random encounter with a Dire Bear.


Being turned into a bear is not the point, that's just the way that the story went because it's amusing and leads to beautiful imagery. The point is that the circumstances of the story lead Merida and her mother to actually pay attention to each other, in a context that removed their preexisting biases. That allowed them to come to a better understanding, and when they reached that understanding, it was the mother who changed her position on the tradition.

I understand it's not the point, which sort of makes it worse. I feel like the movie sacrificed depth for a contrived and ultimately pointless detour into Bear Country that I personally didn't find amusing. Now, I admit that my personal enjoyment is a completely subjective quality, but the whole time the movie is trying to make Elinor's transformation comedic and amusing, I couldn't help but find the whole thing uncomfortable. It couldn't help thinking about how existentially terrifying it would be to suddenly find your self in the body of a strange creature.

Also, for a movie about two people coming together through unfortunate circumstances, changing only one of the two put an imbalance on it. If the movie's message is that both of them need to understand each other, why would only one of them suffer? It'd be like if in Freaky Friday, only the mother turned into a teenager. And if the message was only that the mother needed to see from her daughter's point of view, well, I feel like that's a gross oversimplification.

Well, that's a wall of text for you. If you don't mind another, here's an in-depth list of changes that I think would have improved the movie.


First, some things I'd like to see added to the first act, to better set the scene.

I think we could have used a more concrete idea of what Merida actually wanted, aside from 'not an arranged marriage'. Now, she's a teenager, she doesn't need to have her life figured out, but what are her dreams? Does she want to be like her father, and rule over her people like a king? Does she want to lead her people into battle? Or does she just want to be a warrior? All we really know is she likes horse riding, climbing, and archery. But those aren't dreams, those are hobbies. Instead of that montage of her being a free spirit, why not show her confiding in someone, either her father, or someone outside of her family, and establish what her goals actually are.
I would have liked to see some actual characterization of the suitors. At the end of the movie, they immediately agree to forgo the contest in favor of choice. Why don't we establish early on that at least some of them have some reservations about the ordeal as well? Maybe one of them has a crush on someone else, one of the others isn't ready for betrothal, and one of them would prefer to win Merida's heart romantically?
We needed to establish why the arranged marriage was thought to be necessary. There's hints that there could be violence or unrest if the marriage doesn't go through, but this is abandoned by the second act. There needs to be a threat of consequences to the conflict, or there's no victory in overcoming them.
Finally, have Merida and her mother argue more directly in the first act. If we've established both of their motives better (see above) then they have plenty of weight behind their arguments.


Next, some bigger divergences. There's a couple different ways I could see the second acts going instead, that I think would have been stronger.


First, and closest to the original movie: instead asking the witch to specifically change her mother, Merida asks her to change her fate. The witch complies, and changes both Elinor and Merida into bears that night. The two of them work together to escape the castle, and spend the second act together, trying to work together to figure out how to undo the spell. As they are both bears, they can still communicate, and continue to argue.

They discover the ruins and encounter Mor'du, who has fully embraced his bearness, but is not completely feral. With Mor'du, they discover the way to break the spell, and the three of them embark to do so. They face several challenges which they overcome together. Upon reaching the end of their quest, they are betrayed by Mor'du, who intends to break his own spell and take over the highlands himself. Elinor, who through to this point has remained dainty and ladylike, even in bear form, fiercely defends her daughter, and is badly hurt by Mor'du. Merida is faced with the choice between going after Mor'du and breaking her curse, or helping her mother. Realizing that her mother has always been trying to protect her, Merida goes to save her, and Elinor fully realizes that Merida is much more than a selfish teenager. The two reconcile, both apologizing, as Mor'du breaks the curse. He reverts to a human form, but the many years his life was prolonged by the magic catch up to him, and he withers away into dust (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-DGFuHC75aY).

With Mor'du gone, Merida and Elinor are able to remove their curse together, and set home. They return to find their home on the verge of a civil war, which leads into the final act, which I'll detail in a moment.


Another, more drastically different path for the second act, would be to completely remove the witch. Instead, the major inciting incident is the archery contest. Merida humiliates the three suitors so badly that their fathers, furious, declare war. Fergus assembles his troops and rides out into battle, leaving Merida behind with Elinor. Merida wants to go out and fight alongside her father, but Elinor forbids it. Merida sneaks out, but Elinor chases after her to bring her back. During the chase, they get lost, and their horses get spooked and run off without them. The two of them are stuck in the middle of nowhere, alone, and have to work together to find their way back.

The two continue to fight, but Merida impresses her mother with her survival skills. The two slowly start to bond, and Elinor shows that she's not completely without her skills. Together, they make their way back home, overcoming many natural obstacles. Finally, when they've almost made it home, they come across the stone circle and find Mor'du (who, in this version, is just a big scary bear who took her father's leg).

Merida tries to fight the bear, but the beast just shrugs off her arrows. As the bear advances on her, Elinor attracts its attention, and gets it to chase her, telling Merida to run. The bear chases down Elinor, and backs her up into one of the stone pillars. The bear is about to finish her off when Merida catches up and leaps onto the bear's back, holding onto one of the swords embedded into its back. The bear shakes, throwing her off, and the sword comes loose from the bear's back and falls to the ground. The bear turns back on Elinor, who grabs the blade and faces down the bear, stepping backward and slashing at its paws as it swipes at her. She leads him the cracked stone pillar, back up against it, and dodges out of the way as Mor'du lunges. The bear smashes into the pillar, and brings it tumbling down onto himself.

Merida and Elinor, both hurt from the fight, embrace and realize they would do anything for each other. They fully reconcile, and finally return home. At the castle, they discover that Fergus is about to attack the other chief, and quickly ride out to stop him. They arrive at the battlefield where the two armies are about to face off, and ride between them, momentarily halting the charge.


Finally, either way we've gotten here, we have this for the final act:


Understanding why her mother wanted her betrothed, Merida resigns herself to the marriage, and announces to the gathered tribes that she has made her choice. However, before she announces her choice, Elinor interrupts, and says her daughter will not be put into an arranged marriage. Instead of pantomiming a speech to Merida as in the original movie, Elinor is the one who delivers the speech. The three tribe leaders are furious. Fergus stands up with his wife and daughter, and backs them up, saying that anyone who disagrees will have to fight with him. Just when it appears that the three chiefs are going to take him up on it, the sons speak up, finally admitting that they weren't crazy about the idea either. (Which hopefully we've established earlier, as I noted above). They each convince their fathers to back down, and the chiefs reluctantly follow their son's wishes. This, instead of the bear fight, is the final conflict of the movie. In the end, the chiefs leave in peace, and all the children are free to make their own choices. In the final scenes, we see one of the suitors pursuing someone more their type, and another one perhaps staying to try wooing Merida his own way.


So, that's my pitch for how I would have done it.

Now, again, I'm not saying that Brave was a terrible movie, or even a bad movie, really. It was decent. But it wasn't the movie I wanted. And I understand that that's a subjective thing, but I really think the movie could have been better. Feel free to disagree.

Erikun hit up a fair amount, so I'll just touch on a few more things. And I didn't mean to offend by saying you were not looking at it correctly, but I do think that focusing on the idea of arranged marriage as being the only idea when the movie presents a character vocally objecting to it is a little bit unfair.

Anyway, specific stuff
So, we'll have to agree to disagree about the difficulty of resolving the conflict between the clans. I personally thought it made perfect sense that Merida was able to break tradition with minimal consequences. First, it allowed the story to have a happy ending, which is important for this kind of film. More importantly though, it fits with the theme of learning to understand the people you care about. It worked because Merida understood that they were all friends, and there was a bond present between the clans that was stronger than the arranged marriage problem. That's simply another aspect of the movie that mirrors Merida and her mother learning to understand each other. If the clans had been violent and warlike, it would have made the theme seem futile. And yes, it's true that in reality sometimes people can't just sit down and talk out their differences. But it's usually good to try and a fairy tale should reinforce those good themes, even at the expense of realism.


Regarding the bear transformation, I do think that it just didn't work for you, which was unfortunate. But a story like this is told on multiple levels, and one of them is amusement and whimsy because that keeps people's attention. The mother being turned into a bear is a major premise of the story (even if it's not strictly required to express the theme). To say that bear thing didn't work is just to dislike the movie. It would be like saying that the plant story in Wall-E or the house on balloons story in UP didn't work.

Regarding your story ideas, I quite like the idea of the queen delivering the speech as a way to show how she's changed and a bit more final conflict. I think that would make for a good, but different story. Keep in mind it would actually make Merida seem less mature, however, since her delivery of the speech was the moment when she embraced all the lessons her mother had taught her.

Fawkes
2012-06-26, 12:52 AM
Let me just get in some responses.


Of course, you have to remember that it's a kid's movie. Yes, Pixar's good at making family movies, but most families don't want their young children watching a terrible bloody conflict resulting from the spunky female protagonist not wanting to adhere to primitive morality.

I'd like to note that, in either of the alternate versions of the story I presented, the 'terrible bloody conflict' is stopped before it happens, and only one death occurs.


-snip-

There's a lot of good points in here, but the end, I think we're just going to have to agree to disagree. I just didn't take the same things away from the movie. Sorry. *shrug*


So, we'll have to agree to disagree about the difficulty of resolving the conflict between the clans. I personally thought it made perfect sense that Merida was able to break tradition with minimal consequences. First, it allowed the story to have a happy ending, which is important for this kind of film... And yes, it's true that in reality sometimes people can't just sit down and talk out their differences. But it's usually good to try and a fairy tale should reinforce those good themes, even at the expense of realism.[/spoilers]

My issue here isn't that a happy ending is reached - absolutely, at the end of the movie, the betrothal needs to be off, and everyone needs to be getting along. But I didn't feel like the movie really earned that happy ending. People can sit down and work out their differences, but it's not an easy thing.

Also, I really, really think that should have been the final conflict to be resolved. Mor'du was big and scary, but he wasn't the source of their problems.


[spoiler]Regarding your story ideas, I quite like the idea of the queen delivering the speech as a way to show how she's changed and a bit more final conflict. I think that would make for a good, but different story. Keep in mind it would actually make Merida seem less mature, however, since her delivery of the speech was the moment when she embraced all the lessons her mother had taught her.

I don't see it making Merida less mature. In my version of the ending, Merida resigns herself to the arranged marriage, making a huge personal sacrifice, before her mom steps in and admits she was wrong to push the arranged marriage on her. If anything, that seems more mature to me.

It's also possible that I've completely misunderstood the message of the film. and constructed an entirely different film based I what I wanted to see. :smalltongue:

But man, I really want to see that movie I wanted to see.

Avilan the Grey
2012-06-26, 12:58 AM
I'm going to emphatically disagree with you on this point. Not because I endorse arranged marriages - it's an ugly practice that has been largely abandoned for good reason. If the story was set in contemporary society, and the mother was trying to set up her daughter with an arranged marriage, I would naturally object.

But it's not. The story is set in the medieval highlands, and arranged marriage is simply How Things Are. The mother isn't trying to marry her daughter off for personal gain, she setting her up in an arranged marriage because that's how it's done.

As pointed out elsewhere, this is not an excuse because this is not the historically correct way to do it anyway. This is just a lottery, where her daughter is the price. Not to be overly dramatic, but IMHO her daughter is justified in KILLING her parents and / or future husband to get away from it, if necessary.


I've taken history classes at the university level and read enough books on history to fill multiple bookcases. You aren't winning if it comes to a battle of knowledge. Right now in this couple of paragraphs you've resorted to maybe's and hypotheticals which are in no way supported by the movie or characterization.

I'm not just saying they're equally screwed by marriage, I'm saying they're screwed by the entire society for their whole lives. A feudal society isn't exactly a nice place to live because EVERYONE is beholden to someone Else's whims unless MAYBE you make it to king, and even then you have to deal with other major figures. That's how it works. Claiming that a noblewoman had it worse off than her husband is to ignore all the stuff her husband had to do when they weren't together. He might have a higher status but that status was expected to be paid for in literal sweat and blood and higher levels of accountability.

If you have taken history classes, then you should know that what you are arguing against is historically correct.

The husband could do almost what he damn well pleased with his wife. And yes, he too has obligations (mainly to go to war on his lord's behalf), but compared to a woman? There is a reason very very few women stand out in history from this (roughly defined) era. A woman either got married, remarried, or went (often forced to, if she was useless as a political bargaining chip or too much of a political threat (meaning if she got pregnant your son would lose his place in whatever succession order was in place) into a convent and spent her life as a nun; that was the only other option.

TheLaughingMan
2012-06-26, 01:06 AM
I'll go ahead and combo-break by saying yes, I did quite like your ideas, Fawkes.


To say that bear thing didn't work is just to dislike the movie. It would be like saying that the plant story in Wall-E or the house on balloons story in UP didn't work.

Not necessarily. All that is required is for Elinor to be debilitated by a curse in some fashion. Anything around that idea is free game. That's not to say they couldn't have just done more with the current plot, but that thinking outside that doesn't break the story. With WALL-E, the plant was the plot coupon, around which the entire story revolved, and with the way they had world-built the movie it would be hard to make it into anything else, as the plant was both small enough to carry, distinctive in design, and was a very easy way of getting across to viewers that the Earth could be revitalized without info-dumping. The balloons, likewise, were worked in as rather clever motifs, and were woven throughout the film from start to finish (I'll limit myself from going into detail in this case for sake of conciseness, but consider how more are gathered as Carl grows with Ellie, how Carl's simple balloons contrast with Muntz's majestic blimp, and how more are lost throughout the movie as Carl learns to live without Ellie, etc.). It's not that you can't replace them with other metaphors, but rather that there are few that can beat out what we got.

Putting, say, a troll or dire wolf transformation or a different curse altogether in place of a bear transformation doesn't really break Brave's plot, as there are plenty of overprotective, ugly parents in the animal kingdom and the world outside it. :smalltongue: All that needs to be done is to get Elinor and Merida out into the wilderness and for Elinor to be horrifically cursed, something I find that Fawkes's first plot idea does well enough. Again, I'll say that the current plot could just have been executed better, but the thinness of the motif means that other solutions from other viewpoints aren't all that game-breaking of an issue.


As for the three suiters, they could have been fleshed out more, and should have been... if this were a book.

Again, not necessarily. Give them each a single line of dialogue and expressive body movement and you could easily get across that they're not quite up for the whole arranged marriage thing. They could even just say a dejected "Oh... yeah...." when reminded about the whole ordeal and we as an audience can grasp that they're reluctant about the whole thing for whatever reason. I mean, look at WALL-E. A lot of characters don't even have dialogue, and yet we can get a basic understanding of their characters form the few scenes they're in just by the way they conduct themselves and how others react to them (see: the malfunctioning robots, Mo [sp?], the WALL-As, and John and Mary [were those their names? I suddenly can't recall]).


As pointed out elsewhere, this is not an excuse because this is not the historically correct way to do it anyway. This is just a lottery, where her daughter is the price. Not to be overly dramatic, but IMHO her daughter is justified in KILLING her parents and / or future husband to get away from it, if necessary.

Haha what.

Yeah, um, stuff like this is why I was hoping you were being sarcastic earlier. Mostly because holy crap.

Fawkes
2012-06-26, 01:08 AM
Actually, I do want to specifically respond to one of Erikun's points.


As for the three suiters, they could have been fleshed out more, and should have been... if this were a book. For a movie, I think they worked out surprisingly well. I had a very good sense that none of them were interested in this tradition any more than Merida was, simply because of their body language every time we saw them. All three of them seemed to have an attitude of silent compliance, caring very little about the whole proposal and tournament - even the angry prince (his name escapes me) was apparently more angry at his inability to make a good shot than anything regarding the prize.[/SPOILER]

If you're concerned about running time, Brave clocks in at 93 minutes, making it the shortest Pixar movie since Monster's Inc in 2001. (I looked it up - Monster's Inc and Toy Story 2 were 92 minutes, the original Toy Story was only 77 minutes long, which surprised me.) An extra minute or two about the suitors wouldn't have hurt.

If you're concerned about pacing, well, I'm not asking for much. Just a shot of one of the suitors, say, admiring another girl, and maybe a quick line from one of the others where they start to object, and their father cuts them off. I feel like a little more effort in characterizing them would have gone a long way.


As pointed out elsewhere, this is not an excuse because this is not the historically correct way to do it anyway. This is just a lottery, where her daughter is the price. Not to be overly dramatic, but IMHO her daughter is justified in KILLING her parents and / or future husband to get away from it, if necessary.

Okay, that's... COMPLETELY overly dramatic. Have you seen the movie?

The 'excuse' is not historical accuracy, it's that there's a societal pressure on the arranged marriage. It's not just something the mother is pushing on her for her own selfish reasons. Saying someone should be KILLED for being implicit in a harmful social more is frankly offensive to me.

VanBuren
2012-06-26, 01:10 AM
I'll go ahead and combo-break by saying yes, I did quite like your ideas, Fawkes.



Not necessarily. All that is required is for Elinor to be debilitated by a curse in some fashion. Anything around that idea is free game. That's not to say they couldn't have just done more with the current plot, but that thinking outside that doesn't break the story. With WALL-E, the plant was the plot coupon, around which the entire story revolved, and with the way they had world-built the movie it would be hard to make it into anything else, as the plant was both small enough to carry, distinctive in design, and was a very easy way of getting across to viewers that the Earth could be revitalized without info-dumping. The balloons, likewise, were worked in as rather clever motifs, and were woven throughout the film from start to finish (I'll limit myself from going into detail in this case for sake of conciseness, but consider how more are gathered as Carl grows with Ellie, how Carl's simple balloons contrast with Muntz's majestic blimp, and how more are lost throughout the movie as Carl learns to live without Ellie, etc.). It's not that you can't replace them with other metaphors, but rather that there are few that can beat out what we got.

Putting, say, a troll or dire wolf transformation or a different curse altogether in place of a bear transformation doesn't really break Brave's plot, as there are plenty of overprotective, ugly parents in the animal kingdom and the world outside it. :smalltongue: All that needs to be done is to get Elinor and Merida out into the wilderness and for Elinor to be horrifically cursed, something I find that Fawkes's first plot idea does well enough. Again, I'll say that the current plot could just have been executed better, but the thinness of the motif means that other solutions from other viewpoints aren't all that game-breaking of an issue.



Again, not necessarily. Give them each a single line of dialogue and expressive body movement and you could easily get across that they're not quite up for the whole arranged marriage thing. They could even just say a dejected "Oh... yeah...." when reminded about the whole ordeal and we as an audience can grasp that they're reluctant about the whole thing for whatever reason. I mean, look at WALL-E. A lot of characters don't even have dialogue, and yet we can get a basic understanding of their characters form the few scenes they're in just by the way they conduct themselves and how others react to them (see: the malfunctioning robots, Mo [sp?], the WALL-As, and John and Mary [were those their names? I suddenly can't recall]).



Haha what.

Yeah, um, stuff like this is why I was hoping you were being sarcastic earlier. Mostly because holy crap.

Some people take functional slavery pretty seriously.

Avilan the Grey
2012-06-26, 01:13 AM
Okay, that's... COMPLETELY overly dramatic. Have you seen the movie?

The 'excuse' is not historical accuracy, it's that there's a societal pressure on the arranged marriage. It's not just something the mother is pushing on her for her own selfish reasons. Saying someone should be KILLED for being implicit in a harmful social more is frankly offensive to me.

No, I have not seen it. As I have pointed out.
And it doesn't matter if the mother is pushing her into it for her own selfish reasons or not. It is completely irrelevant. The only thing relevant is this: Is both the girl and boy 100% willing to spend their entire life together with no possibility of divorce? If not, then yes, the person that has objections has the right to do whatever is necessary to get out of the situation.


Haha what.

Yeah, um, stuff like this is why I was hoping you were being sarcastic earlier. Mostly because holy crap.


Some people take functional slavery pretty seriously.

Indeed.

TheLaughingMan
2012-06-26, 01:14 AM
Some people take functional slavery pretty seriously.

Yes, because being queen is such torment. I mean it's a terrible practice, sure, but if it meant that much to the kid she could've just ran away and lived life happily elsewhere. Slaves don't usually have that luxury.

EDIT: Deleted some stuff, I'm stupid.

Avilan the Grey
2012-06-26, 01:17 AM
Yes, because being queen is such torment. I mean it's a terrible practice, sure, but if it meant that much to the kid she could've just ran away and lived life happily elsewhere. Slaves don't usually have that luxury.

So... what exactly are you talking about?

The whole point is that she CAN'T just run away. Ever. If she doesn't fall in love with her husband (something btw that really irritates me in a lot of stories like this, where it turns out that "oh she fell madly in love with him after they met") her life will be rather damn miserable. Until death.

And a gilded cage is very much still a cage. To claim that being locked into a life against her will is okay, because she will be queen is... how did you put it? "Holy Crap!"

TheLaughingMan
2012-06-26, 01:21 AM
And a gilded cage is very much still a cage. To claim that being locked into a life against her will is okay, because she will be queen is... how did you put it? "Holy Crap!"

Never said that. I said that lack of romance < not murdering some guy. Those are very different concepts.

Jayngfet
2012-06-26, 01:28 AM
So... what exactly are you talking about?

The whole point is that she CAN'T just run away. Ever. If she doesn't fall in love with her husband (something btw that really irritates me in a lot of stories like this, where it turns out that "oh she fell madly in love with him after they met").

And a gilded cage is very much still a cage. To claim that being locked into a life against her will is okay, because she will be queen is... how did you put it? "Holy Crap!"

So ...exactly like every single other person alive in europe at the time? There is absolutely nobody she's talked to that isn't in a cage themselves. It's just cages in cages in cages. It's never a choice between a cage or no cage, it didn't work like that. Any move you take is going to wind up with you subservient to some other force. That's how it worked for absolutely everyone of both genders.

I mean the queens only options given her skillets were either marry the guy or become a nun, which just keeps you in a separate hierarchy altogether. I mean yeah, the Scottish clergy was particularly lenient depending on the era but you still wound up in a gilded cage all the same.

erikun
2012-06-26, 01:33 AM
There's a lot of good points in here, but the end, I think we're just going to have to agree to disagree. I just didn't take the same things away from the movie. Sorry. *shrug*
Hey, I don't think we're really disagreeing on much. There's certainly reasons to dislike this movie, so that doesn't make your reasoning invalid in any way. The movie you describe doesn't sound like a bad idea either, although I'll agree with Anarion in that it sounds like a movie starring Queen Elinor rather than Merida.

I'm mostly pointing out why I liked the movie, and good reasons why others would like it as well. As long as I'm being understood clearly, I am perfectly fine with disagreeing and just saying that we liked and disliked the movie for various resons.

I think I'll mimic what someone else said earlier: Thank you for making me take a closer look at the movie. :smallredface: I actually think it has really improved for me after looking through it more throughly.


Again, not necessarily. Give them each a single line of dialogue and expressive body movement and you could easily get across that they're not quite up for the whole arranged marriage thing. They could even just say a dejected "Oh... yeah...." when reminded about the whole ordeal and we as an audience can grasp that they're reluctant about the whole thing for whatever reason. I mean, look at WALL-E. A lot of characters don't even have dialogue, and yet we can get a basic understanding of their characters form the few scenes they're in just by the way they conduct themselves and how others react to them (see: the malfunctioning robots, Mo [sp?], the WALL-As, and John and Mary [were those their names? I suddenly can't recall]).
Re: Suiters
Yeah, I will agree that they should've at least had one or more scenes during the tournament highlighting their boredom or priorities elsewhere. Much like Mor'du, it was a part of the movie that really should've received more attention, because them not liking the arranged marriage either just highlights how unnecessary the whole setup is.

The "better in a book" comment was that it would be easier to go into their backstory or motivations in a text, where wordcount doesn't matter as much, rather than in a movie. Screentime and pacing are pretty important in a movie, and you don't want to have too many additional scenes.


I wouldn't make a good comparison to the extras in WALL-E, primarily because I didn't like them and thought they were some of the worst parts of the movie. Then again, Brave seems to have a lot of non-speaking roles, and they've come a long way since then.


If you're concerned about running time, Brave clocks in at 93 minutes, making it the shortest Pixar movie since Monster's Inc in 2001. (I looked it up - Monster's Inc and Toy Story 2 were 92 minutes, the original Toy Story was only 77 minutes long, which surprised me.) An extra minute or two about the suitors wouldn't have hurt.

If you're concerned about pacing, well, I'm not asking for much. Just a shot of one of the suitors, say, admiring another girl, and maybe a quick line from one of the others where they start to object, and their father cuts them off. I feel like a little more effort in characterizing them would have gone a long way.
Yes, this is a good point. They could've taking a few extra minutes to highlight that, and it would have improved things. I just wouldn't want to movie to ride off onto the tangent of the suiters' various motivations, when they are mostly just silly background characters and their disinterest is the important point.


The whole point is that she CAN'T just run away. Ever.
Spoilery bits:
Actually, she can. It just means leaving her mother as an animal and, as with the last time it happened, allowing the entire country to fall into genocide.

So yeah, she definitely has the choice.

Fawkes
2012-06-26, 01:33 AM
Some people take functional slavery pretty seriously.

As well they should. But I'd say murder should be treated seriously as well.


No, I have not seen it. As I have pointed out.

Please do, if you want to continue this argument with me.

Arranged marriages, as the movie presents them, do not appear to result in slavery. It is established that Queen Elinor was married in an arranged union, and she rules over the kingdom.

Does that make arranged marriage okay? No. No one's arguing that. Merida should not be forced into marrying against her will.

But that doesn't mean that MURDER is an okay solution. MURDER IS BAD.

Her mother is only trying to do what she thinks is best for her. You can't just kill someone for wronging you when all they're trying to do is keep you safe.

I can't believe I just had to explain that to someone.


The movie you describe doesn't sound like a bad idea either, although I'll agree with Anarion in that it sounds like a movie starring Queen Elinor rather than Merida.

There may be a bit of a bias there. :smallredface: I may have mentioned I didn't particularly care for Merida.


I think I'll mimic what someone else said earlier: Thank you for making me take a closer look at the movie. :smallredface: I actually think it has really improved for me after looking through it more throughly.

Glad I could help. I knew that film degree would pay off eventually.

TheLaughingMan
2012-06-26, 01:43 AM
MURDER IS BAD.

Oh thank goodness. I thought I had just somehow popped into an alternate universe where not wantonly killing your loving family members was no longer a basic building block to almost every culture known to man and even most animals. Given how temperamental my family can be, you have no idea how much of a relief that is. :P

VanBuren
2012-06-26, 01:52 AM
Oh thank goodness. I thought I had just somehow popped into an alternate universe where not wantonly killing your loving family members was no longer a basic building block to almost every culture known to man and even most animals. Given how temperamental my family can be, you have no idea how much of a relief that is. :P

Has no one discovered hyperbole in your home universe?

Fawkes
2012-06-26, 01:54 AM
Has no one discovered hyperbole in your home universe?

I think it ceases to be hyperbole when you repeat several times that yes, you are serious.

Worira
2012-06-26, 02:28 AM
Guys, I'm going to take a controversial stand here and say that you shouldn't murder people.

Avilan the Grey
2012-06-26, 02:31 AM
Never said that. I said that lack of romance < not murdering some guy. Those are very different concepts.

You said:


Yes, because being queen is such torment. I mean it's a terrible practice, sure, but if it meant that much to the kid she could've just ran away and lived life happily elsewhere. Slaves don't usually have that luxury.

With the discussion at hand, it really only could be read one way: Being forced to marry against your will is okay, if it makes you a queen. Sorry if I misunderstood your comment, but it is very hard to take it any other way.


So ...exactly like every single other person alive in europe at the time? There is absolutely nobody she's talked to that isn't in a cage themselves. It's just cages in cages in cages. It's never a choice between a cage or no cage, it didn't work like that. Any move you take is going to wind up with you subservient to some other force. That's how it worked for absolutely everyone of both genders.

I mean the queens only options given her skillets were either marry the guy or become a nun, which just keeps you in a separate hierarchy altogether. I mean yeah, the Scottish clergy was particularly lenient depending on the era but you still wound up in a gilded cage all the same.

The point I am trying to make is exactly this. But there are degrees in hell, and women of the equal status in the higher ranks always were worse of than their male counterparts. Freemen (free peasants) however had a slightly different deal... A peasant wife still lacked certain rights compared to her husband, but it was a far more equal relationship. The shared hardship saw to that.

Anyway, the whole point is that someone has to be the first. Someone HAS to challenge tradition, or they will never be changed. Somebody should FINALLY object to objectionable practices, and do so with a quite significant moral high ground, by default.


Spoilery bits:
Actually, she can. It just means leaving her mother as an animal and, as with the last time it happened, allowing the entire country to fall into genocide.

So yeah, she definitely has the choice.

I am talking
Pre-bear, here.


As well they should. But I'd say murder should be treated seriously as well.



Please do, if you want to continue this argument with me.

Arranged marriages, as the movie presents them, do not appear to result in slavery. It is established that Queen Elinor was married in an arranged union, and she rules over the kingdom.

Does that make arranged marriage okay? No. No one's arguing that. Merida should not be forced into marrying against her will.

But that doesn't mean that MURDER is an okay solution. MURDER IS BAD.

Her mother is only trying to do what she thinks is best for her. You can't just kill someone for wronging you when all they're trying to do is keep you safe.

I can't believe I just had to explain that to someone.

It is because she (Elinor) had the luck to end up with a jolly goof. She might just as well have ended up with the Scottish equivalent of Jafar.

And I KNOW murder is bad. I am however arguing that as a very last resort it is justified to escape** a fate you cannot bear*. And I know Elinor's intentions. It does not make them any less misguided; the road to hell is paved with good intentions, after all.

*Pun not intended.

**She could of course have killed herself instead, which is quite common in old tales anyway. Would have made for a different story, though.

Fawkes
2012-06-26, 02:41 AM
Anyway, the whole point is that someone has to be the first. Someone HAS to challenge tradition, or they will never be changed. Somebody should FINALLY object to objectionable practices, and do so with a quite significant moral high ground, by default.

No one's arguing against that. I'm just saying, don't murder people.

Killer Angel
2012-06-26, 02:49 AM
Anyway, the whole point is that someone has to be the first. Someone HAS to challenge tradition, or they will never be changed. Somebody should FINALLY object to objectionable practices, and do so with a quite significant moral high ground, by default.


Challenging a wrong tradition is OK, but I'm sorry, murdering peoples don't give you a quite significant moral high ground, by default. :smallamused:

Jayngfet
2012-06-26, 02:50 AM
The point I am trying to make is exactly this. But there are degrees in hell, and women of the equal status in the higher ranks always were worse of than their male counterparts. Freemen (free peasants) however had a slightly different deal... A peasant wife still lacked certain rights compared to her husband, but it was a far more equal relationship. The shared hardship saw to that.


Well on the level of free lower class, but that's one rank out of over a dozen. Besides, depending on the country free peasant marriges were another set of problems altogether even if you discounted prearranged matrimony.

Meridia however is not a free peasant. She is a princess with servants to handle much of the workload for her. Her hardship and the risks for what happens if she messes up would be much less than any husband she'd take simply because she'd never be expected to deal with soldier movements in a war or any other such high risk activity. Her duties might not be what she'd want but the fact that the three sons in the movie had to boast about how many men they'd killed before they could grow facial hair kind of speaks for itself as to what the divide in expectations was.

Avilan the Grey
2012-06-26, 02:57 AM
Well on the level of free lower class, but that's one rank out of over a dozen. Besides, depending on the country free peasant marriges were another set of problems altogether even if you discounted prearranged matrimony.

Meridia however is not a free peasant. She is a princess with servants to handle much of the workload for her. Her hardship and the risks for what happens if she messes up would be much less than any husband she'd take simply because she'd never be expected to deal with soldier movements in a war or any other such high risk activity. Her duties might not be what she'd want but the fact that the three sons in the movie had to boast about how many men they'd killed before they could grow facial hair kind of speaks for itself as to what the divide in expectations was.

I know all this. :smallsmile:
And I am not saying that free peasants didn't have arranged marriages, to a degree, but at least the women were more equal to the men in everyday life.

Mauve Shirt
2012-06-26, 05:08 AM
Best way to challenge tradition: turn your mother into a bear. :smalltongue:

Also, the amount of RAEG that a kid's movie about a teenage girl learning to respect her mother is generating is simply hilarious. It's like you expect Pixar to deliver you the best entertainment you've ever seen! Did you watch Cars? Ratatouille? A Bug's Life?

Scowling Dragon
2012-06-26, 05:52 AM
Hey! I liked Ratatouille! I wen't to see it by accident (Because the premise sounded way too bizarre for me) but I left pretty satisfied.

Brother Oni
2012-06-26, 06:50 AM
*Looks at the arranged marriage debate he started*

*Slinks off into a corner and tries to hide*



The mother, for her part, burns her daughter's bow, a spiteful act designed to hurt. To take the one thing Merida loves more than anything else in the world -- the symbol of her pride, her strength, her independence -- and destroy it. It's the kind of thing only the one who knows you best can do, hurt you in a way a stranger never could.


Ouch. It seems that both sides are intent on hurting the other.

A little expansion on the bow - a bow is individual to an archer. A combination of the poundage, draw length, length of the bow and numerous other little details all make it unique to that person.
Destroying a bow, especially a traditional self long bow like that where somebody (probably Merida herself) took the time in carving it out a single piece of wood, is a sure way of hurting a dedicated archer, even without the additional personal symbology.

Fragenstein
2012-06-26, 07:17 AM
Hey! I liked Ratatouille! I wen't to see it by accident (Because the premise sounded way too bizarre for me) but I left pretty satisfied.

Indeed yes. I was expecting to be dissapointed in that one, and in fact I was after first seeing it. I've found that it's aged very well, though, and grown on me over time where some of the other Pixar movies have gotten stale. Ratatouille is now one of my favorites.

'Up', on the other hand, is just the opposite. I expected high marks from the film and failed to find them even over the long run. The characters are shallow and one-dimensional, the writing was uninspired, the locations were limited and the cast lacked diversity.


"So what do we do here, Bob? I 'got nothing for this scene."

"I don't know. How about some pointlessly self-destructive behavior and a dog with a squeeky voice? Kids love that crap."

pendell
2012-06-26, 08:13 AM
As pointed out elsewhere, this is not an excuse because this is not the historically correct way to do it anyway. This is just a lottery, where her daughter is the price. Not to be overly dramatic, but IMHO her daughter is justified in KILLING her parents and / or future husband to get away from it, if necessary.


I respectfully disagree. Absent the fairy tale elements which actually happened, Merida would have been justified in running away from home. But lethal violence -- in ancient Scotland and here -- is justified only when defending oneself from lethal danger. Which neither the parents nor the suitor were offering. She is definitely justified in escaping and living as an outlaw (not in the sense of robbing humans to live, but in the sense of living outside society and society's rules) , but killing is a bit over the top.

Plus, we've got to remember that Mom's intent is good. It seems a bit rude to kill someone who's doing nothing more than the best she can for you, given the system she lives in and the rules she's had to play by her entire life.

Yes, mom caused Merida pain she didn't intend. And if that's just cause for killing her, Merida also caused Mom a great deal more pain than intended as well. She'd be condemning herself, because she's done the same and worse.

I think this is a valuable point: The world and the kingdom that our heroes live in as not perfect. But guess what? Magically wiping it away and replacing it with a modern world is not an option . Even if Mom was 100% on board with Merida's idea at the beginning, there's still four whole clans of angry, violent men who don't think that way.

Getting a society to accept change is a tricky business, and must be managed carefully. Merida and mom can't deal with society as if it were an ideal. They have to deal with society as it *is*, and murdering people just because they don't live or think the way you want to is precisely what the fourth brother did in the last generation. We saw how well that worked out.

So it's a careful dance. Accomplishing change is hard. Accomplishing change peacefully is even harder. But peaceful change that results in an accommodation nobody is happy with but everyone can live with is usually better than war and strife and murder and skeletons and burned castles. "Accommodation" is usually the best one can hope for in this world, anyway. No society has ever been perfect. People who work within society's rules to make it better leave society a better place. People who kill to get their way usually set up something far worse if they win. And if they lose, reactionaries stomp on ANY new ideas even harder, because they believe new ideas are dangerous. When new ideas involve killing people who don't go along, they're right!


ETA: Okay, there is one exception I will make. Which is, if a suitor decided to attempt to assert ... marital rights ... and Merida wasn't willing for him to do so, she would be justified in killing him dead-dead if he wouldn't listen and attempted to take her against her will. Marriage or not, no man has the right to force himself on a woman . Men who forget that need to be reminded at dagger point, if need be.

Respectfully,

Brian P.

erikun
2012-06-26, 10:47 AM
I am talking
Pre-bear, here.
So was I.
Even in the arguably worst part of the arranged marriage conflict - after she had rejected the suiters and the three clans were yelling and brandishing weapons - nobody stopped Merida from simply walking out the front door. Not one of the suiters, not one of the suiters' fathers, not one of the guards, not her father, not her mother. And as we saw a bit later in the film, Merida was perfectly capable of surviving on her own in the wild without any kind of assistance. She could've left at any time, and would have survived leaving at any time.

That's kind of a point, because it doesn't make Merida's dependence on castle life her reason for staying in the situation. It means she has other reasons for staying there, and attempting to change her mother's mind rather than just run off.

Now, that doesn't make it a recommendation from me that you go see the movie. If the idea of arranged marriages is that negative to you, then I don't think you'd enjoy the movie regardless of how good it is. (And it is still only "pretty good" rather than "outstanding must-see")


ETA: Okay, there is one exception I will make. Which is, if a suitor decided to attempt to assert ... marital rights ... and Merida wasn't willing for him to do so, she would be justified in killing him dead-dead if he wouldn't listen and attempted to take her against her will. Marriage or not, no man has the right to force himself on a woman . Men who forget that need to be reminded at dagger point, if need be.

Respectfully,

Brian P.
On that same point, I have to agree with this. Well, I have to agree with Brian's whole post, but this point is important to the rest of the situation.

TheLaughingMan
2012-06-26, 11:26 AM
With the discussion at hand, it really only could be read one way: Being forced to marry against your will is okay, if it makes you a queen. Sorry if I misunderstood your comment, but it is very hard to take it any other way.

The main point was, and as other posters have said themselves, she did have a chance to run away and live happily ever after someplace else if she really wanted too, no retribution or anything. Most slaves would die for a chance like that, but Merida has it fall in her lap.

And furthermore, if her mother's marriage is any indication whatsoever about how Brave-arranged-marriages work (and I would assume they do), then she ultimately holds just as much if not more power in the kingdom than her potential husband, which opens up a world of possibilities. History says that the person in power can imprison or exile unruly family members if need be. Or she could spur him to go campaigning off in Whereverland and have a good deal of time to herself while he went off doing nonsense. Or she could curse herself and get thrown out of the village that way. Etc. The point is, being queen opens up many more options than killing her husband if she wants out, which is why it's not nearly as big a deal as if she became an out-and-out slave. You seem to be assuming that Suitor What's-His-Face is gonna go all evil tyrant or something the second he gets married, when in truth he'd either be preoccupied running the kingdom or else lazing around with games or whatever. If memory serves, none of them were particularly interested in Merida anyways, so I'm not quite sure why they would suddenly change their stance on that.

pendell
2012-06-26, 12:14 PM
The main point was, and as other posters have said themselves, she did have a chance to run away and live happily ever after someplace else if she really wanted too, no retribution or anything. Most slaves would die for a chance like that, but Merida has it fall in her lap.


A good point. Marida is confronted by a society and it's rules. The way I see it, she has three choices:

1) Be a queen, which means play the 'queen' role by the rules of society.
2) Be an outlaw, reject both society and it's rules.

Thing is, she can't have it both ways. You can't be the queen AND live as you please. There's a word for what happens when the rules apply to everyone but the ruler, and that word is "tyrant".

I don't think the clans in the movie would accept that. That means, if you're going to presume to be the chief of chiefs and queen of queens, the rules apply to you more than anyone else in the realm. The chief lawgiver must not herself break the law. Things that ordinary people and peasants can get away with, a queen can't. Elinor understands that.

I think most of the movie is coming to grips with that -- that Merida can't have what she wants simply because she thinks its right or fair. I'll wager few people in the kingdom believe that their lot in life is fair, especially if Dennis (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dOOTKA0aGI0) is one of her subjects. If everyone in the kingdom rebels against society because they perceive things as unfair, how will there ever be peace ?

Ultimately, I think she chooses choice #3: She chooses to be a queen and to play the role of a queen, but with her mother's assistance to work within the rules and traditions to change them for the better, rather than simply rebelling and imposing her will by force. To assert her non-negotiable boundaries and to practice give-and-take on the rest. To me, this is a fundamental transition from childhood to adulthood -- to realize that other people's needs are as important as your own, and that you have to muddle along together. To stand up for what she believes in, but to do so in such a way that she doesn't break her society by doing so. Because society can only be pushed so far, even by a queen, before snapping back It's a lesson Belkar had to learn as well (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0606.html).

Respectfully,

Brian P.

Fawkes
2012-06-26, 12:18 PM
Best way to challenge tradition: turn your mother into a bear. :smalltongue:

Also, the amount of RAEG that a kid's movie about a teenage girl learning to respect her mother is generating is simply hilarious. It's like you expect Pixar to deliver you the best entertainment you've ever seen! Did you watch Cars? Ratatouille? A Bug's Life?

Honestly? Yeah, I kinda did. Did you watch the Toy Story series? Wall-E? Up?

Besides, the only thing the movie's actually caused here is thoughtful critique and polite discussion. Any 'raeg' is stemming from an offensive and frankly off-topic discussion on whether it's okay to murder people.


Okay, there is one exception I will make. Which is, if a suitor decided to attempt to assert ... marital rights ... and Merida wasn't willing for him to do so, she would be justified in killing him dead-dead if he wouldn't listen and attempted to take her against her will. Marriage or not, no man has the right to force himself on a woman . Men who forget that need to be reminded at dagger point, if need be.

Agreed, but, I mean, that was never going to be an issue in a kid's movie. Can we just drop this tangent? It's veered off into some uncomfortable territory, and I'm concerned it's going to start breaking forum rules.

Anarion
2012-06-26, 12:56 PM
I'm going to take Fawke's suggestion and keep this post focused on less controversial issues.



Even if Mom was 100% on board with Merida's idea at the beginning, there's still four whole clans of angry, violent men who don't think that way.

Getting a society to accept change is a tricky business, and must be managed carefully.


Okay, I just want to focus on this point. Getting a society to change is tricky business, but sometimes people are more open to change than you realize, and sometimes very smart, very skilled people can work to make a change happen for the better. In this case, given the talent and intelligence that we see out of both Merida and her mother, I think that if they had both been in agreement from the start, they would have had no trouble figuring out how to mollify the clans. Rather than the movie we got, we would have seen them sit down for a 90-minute mediation session and call it a day, but they would definitely have gotten what they wanted.


Even in the movie that we actually got, I'd like to give both Merida and her mother a little more credit. When Elinor and Merida are doing the whole bear pantomime speech, and Merida had already told her story, I'd like to think that Elinor had enough empathy to get a read on the room and realize that Merida could break tradition at that moment without causing a war. I would also suggest that Merida speaking confidently with the skills and stories that her mother taught her (which she had disparaged up until she gives the speech to the collected group) demonstrated the effectiveness of her upbringing for ruling that group of people.

Edit: Whoops, that second part was kind of spoilery.

SoC175
2012-06-26, 02:31 PM
Not to be overly dramatic, but IMHO her daughter is justified in KILLING her parents and / or future husband to get away from it, if necessary.She certainly lived a live of high privilege prior to having to pay the price that is the arranged marriage

How many serf and their children froze to death in harsh winters while she was huddling near to warm fires in the castle? How many peasants worked themselves to the brink of exhaustion (and beyond) only to have the majority of the fruits of their labors taken away to the tables of nobles (leaving the serfs at the brink of starvation)?

And then she doesn't want to pay the price and doesn't care that it means letting the clans just war it out (claiming the lives of thousand more serfs)

Jayngfet
2012-06-26, 03:45 PM
Best way to challenge tradition: turn your mother into a bear. :smalltongue:

Also, the amount of RAEG that a kid's movie about a teenage girl learning to respect her mother is generating is simply hilarious. It's like you expect Pixar to deliver you the best entertainment you've ever seen! Did you watch Cars? Ratatouille? A Bug's Life?

Yeah, but that really doesn't fly anymore. Pixar's reputation has only gotten better and Brave had way more money, talent, and experience on it than any of those movies(Brave having cost TRIPLE what A Bugs Life did) and costing more than any animated movie released this year by a wide margin.

The best entertainment we've ever seen is an expectation justified by everything that went into Brave. If it was a movie that came out from some other studio that'd have had to lop off about a third of their manpower and operate on less advanced machinery using leads that didn't have such awesome past work we might be less forgiving, but it's not. Brave is a movie by a studio with the best reputation, the best people, the best technology, and the highest standards. I could forgive all those other movies more easily because they didn't need to reach the heights Brave did.

This is like an engineer getting a B- on an exam in middle school mathematics, I mean by the standards of middle school math that's a decent mark but he's an engineer, so more is expected of him.

Karoht
2012-06-26, 03:52 PM
The large burly fellow from the Dingwall clan.
Doesn't talk.
Isn't named as far as I can tell.

I'ma just go ahead and call him Korgoth. Is that cool with everyone?

Anarion
2012-06-26, 06:13 PM
Yeah, but that really doesn't fly anymore. Pixar's reputation has only gotten better and Brave had way more money, talent, and experience on it than any of those movies(Brave having cost TRIPLE what A Bugs Life did) and costing more than any animated movie released this year by a wide margin.

The best entertainment we've ever seen is an expectation justified by everything that went into Brave. If it was a movie that came out from some other studio that'd have had to lop off about a third of their manpower and operate on less advanced machinery using leads that didn't have such awesome past work we might be less forgiving, but it's not. Brave is a movie by a studio with the best reputation, the best people, the best technology, and the highest standards. I could forgive all those other movies more easily because they didn't need to reach the heights Brave did.

This is like an engineer getting a B- on an exam in middle school mathematics, I mean by the standards of middle school math that's a decent mark but he's an engineer, so more is expected of him.

Yeah, but they still made a movie that's significantly better than most other stuff out there. I think everyone posting here is discerning enough to figure out for themselves whether to see the movie or not, but I think the fact that they fell short of "best animation ever made" does not call for a boycott of Pixar. Indeed, I would consider it a disservice to friends and family if I actively discouraged them from seeing this movie because it didn't meet such lofty expectations.

Edit: Also, the Pixar short at the beginning is worth the price of admission. That was awesome.

Mauve Shirt
2012-06-26, 07:05 PM
My sister has this great quote

Basically the internet is ALWAYS like... "wait, this is for girls and I don't like it. TERRIBLE SHOW FOR GIRLS" or "wait this is a show for girls and I DO like it. I MUST BE THE ACTUAL TARGET AUDIENCE GIVE ME MORE HAPPY MEAL TOYS NO NOT THOSE THE OTHER ONES"
:smalltongue:

Fawkes
2012-06-26, 08:03 PM
Yeah, but they still made a movie that's significantly better than most other stuff out there. I think everyone posting here is discerning enough to figure out for themselves whether to see the movie or not, but I think the fact that they fell short of "best animation ever made" does not call for a boycott of Pixar. Indeed, I would consider it a disservice to friends and family if I actively discouraged them from seeing this movie because it didn't meet such lofty expectations.

Oh, I agree absolutely. I don't hate the movie, it just doesn't measure up to what I've come to expect from Pixar. There was a lot of good things in it, which sometimes made the experience all the more painful, because I could tell there was a truly fantastic movie hidden away in there, just out of reach.

Jayngfet
2012-06-26, 08:46 PM
Yeah, but they still made a movie that's significantly better than most other stuff out there. I think everyone posting here is discerning enough to figure out for themselves whether to see the movie or not, but I think the fact that they fell short of "best animation ever made" does not call for a boycott of Pixar. Indeed, I would consider it a disservice to friends and family if I actively discouraged them from seeing this movie because it didn't meet such lofty expectations.

Edit: Also, the Pixar short at the beginning is worth the price of admission. That was awesome.

I concur on the short being worth admission price by itself, heck I actually said that myself a couple of pages back.

Right now though, I wouldn't really say it's "significantly better than most other stuff out there" if we're looking at just stuff coming out this year. It might beat Madagascar 3, but Rise of the Guardians and Wreck-It Ralph both seem to be strong competition. Hotel Transylvania I'm having mixed feelings about but I'd honestly say it has a shot of being about as good as Brave if everything goes well. The Pirates!, and Arietty flew under my radar but I wouldn't exactly call them bad. The Lorax was also decent enough even if it has some hypocricies and writing issues of it's own to deal with.

The year is far from over, but this is probably one of the strongest the animation industry has had for a while. Claiming that it's better than most when only half the years features are even out and when some of the most anticipated stuff hasn't even hit the theaters yet is kind of dismissing a whole lot of good stuff right now. It's not a bad movie, it's just a film that's not as good as it should have been coming out in a year that's probably the best we've had in a while. If it'd been slightly stronger or just come out a year or two earlier it'd easily have been the top or second best movie of the year.

I'm not discouraging anyone, I'm just stating my opinion and defending it. I encourage people to see the movie and decide for themselves but if they're gonna read what I'm typing and decide not to go, I'm betting they've already got doubts I'm just confirming.

Mauve Shirt
2012-06-26, 09:17 PM
Heh. All internet debates come down to two sides, not willing to budge, until one side concedes that's it's just opinions. Anyway, I doubt there's too many people who read the discussion thread about a movie without seeing the movie (in this post I assume everyone does everything exactly like me) so it's just a "I HATE IT" vs "I LOVE IT" fight that isn't going to lead to anything but bad feelings.

TheLaughingMan
2012-06-26, 09:22 PM
Heh. All internet debates come down to two sides, not willing to budge, until one side concedes that's it's just opinions. Anyway, I doubt there's too many people who read the discussion thread about a movie without seeing the movie (in this post I assume everyone does everything exactly like me) so it's just a "I HATE IT" vs "I LOVE IT" fight that isn't going to lead to anything but bad feelings.

Actually, excluding the random murder-thing everyone's more or less gotten along fine.

I mean, tell me these sound like fighting words:


I'm not discouraging anyone, I'm just stating my opinion and defending it. I encourage people to see the movie and decide for themselves but if they're gonna read what I'm typing and decide not to go, I'm betting they've already got doubts I'm just confirming.


Oh, I agree absolutely. I don't hate the movie, it just doesn't measure up to what I've come to expect from Pixar. There was a lot of good things in it, which sometimes made the experience all the more painful, because I could tell there was a truly fantastic movie hidden away in there, just out of reach.

Fawkes
2012-06-26, 09:30 PM
Actually, excluding the random murder-thing everyone's more or less gotten along fine.

I mean, tell me these sound like fighting words:

Man, that second guy sounds like a real jerk. Get it? It's a joke, because that's a quote from me.

Brother Oni
2012-06-27, 02:39 AM
The Pirates!, and Arietty flew under my radar but I wouldn't exactly call them bad.

The Pirates! from all accounts, is well worth going to see (I'm waiting for the DVD since my children won't see still in a cinema long enough to watch it).

The only major problem with Arietty is that it's too short - I wanted more of this magical fantastical miniature world. :smallfrown:

Xondoure
2012-06-27, 02:48 AM
The Pirates! from all accounts, is well worth going to see (I'm waiting for the DVD since my children won't see still in a cinema long enough to watch it).

The only major problem with Arietty is that it's too short - I wanted more of this magical fantastical miniature world. :smallfrown:

I'd agree with Arietty. That film managed to stretch itself out far too long while not giving us enough at the same time. Sad really, because in every other way it's a great film.

Jayngfet
2012-06-27, 03:58 AM
The Pirates! from all accounts, is well worth going to see (I'm waiting for the DVD since my children won't see still in a cinema long enough to watch it).

The only major problem with Arietty is that it's too short - I wanted more of this magical fantastical miniature world. :smallfrown:

I got the vibe that they were both good movies, it's just I didn't exactly have much to go on when seeing them. But the fact that they're good just kind of reinforces my point. This is a GREAT year for animation and it's setting some crazy high standards. With Brave being one of Pixar's most expensive, high profile, and technically proficient works as possible and with so many good projects to compare it to whatever flaws it has just stand out all the more. Brave wasn't bad, per se, but outside of being the most visually beautiful movies out there it doesn't have much it shines in compared to the rest of the pack.

Avilan the Grey
2012-06-28, 08:52 AM
She certainly lived a live of high privilege prior to having to pay the price that is the arranged marriage

How many serf and their children froze to death in harsh winters while she was huddling near to warm fires in the castle? How many peasants worked themselves to the brink of exhaustion (and beyond) only to have the majority of the fruits of their labors taken away to the tables of nobles (leaving the serfs at the brink of starvation)?

And then she doesn't want to pay the price and doesn't care that it means letting the clans just war it out (claiming the lives of thousand more serfs)

And? Two different issues. I call strawman.
Also, medieval peasants had it far better than most tend to believe.

Fragenstein
2012-06-28, 09:49 AM
And? Two different issues. I call strawman.
Also, medieval peasants had it far better than most tend to believe.

Wellll... maybe not as much of a strawman as you think. Modern generations have forgotten a few basic things such as obligation and sacrifice. Royal families, long long ago, periodically had to give up things of actual value to themselves in order to safeguard the nations under their demesne.

Sometimes that sacrifice took the form of an arranged marriage made for political reasons. This was understood. This was part of the price a just and responsible ruler payed for the security of their people.

We don't really dig such an antiquated concept because of fallout from the summer of love. Anything that stands in the way of personal freedom and the more selfish forms of liberty is to be stabbed in the eye socket.

"No, I don't care if my behavior means war and death to others. I want to bloody well speed through the countryside like a woodnymph on horseback and you can't stop me. My duty as a proper leader means nothing in comparison to my fiddling about, bone idle, until I'm damn well ready."


Noblesse oblige (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Noblesse_oblige), by damn and thunder!

Karoht
2012-06-28, 10:30 AM
"No, I don't care if my behavior means war and death to others. I want to bloody well speed through the countryside like a woodnymph on horseback and you can't stop me. My duty as a proper leader means nothing in comparison to my fiddling about, bone idle, until I'm damn well ready."Yeah, her father pretty much said the same thing. He got the concept, why is everyone else having such a hard time empathizing with it?
I think he just understood that she's a child.
What did I want to be when I grew up? At age 4 I wanted to be a Transformer. At age 6 I wanted to be a Ghostbuster. At age 8 I wanted to stay at home and read from sunrise until sunset, which got me some pretty odd looks when I said that.
She's a child. She's not yet a noble, regardless of her education.



Noblesse oblige (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Noblesse_oblige), by damn and thunder!By saying she wants to frolic in the woods all day, does no one grasp the concept that she doesn't want to be a nobleperson?

Heck, lets take this a bit further. She's a child. She doesn't want to grow up. Is everyone's inner-child that dead that you can't empathize with another child who doesn't want to grow up?

I think the reason why her father gives her so much slack, is that he doesn't want her to grow up either. He clearly relates to his daughter very well, I don't think he wants to give that up any more than she does. Meanwhile, perhaps the mother wants her to grow up sooner as opposed to later, because then she will relate better than she does currently? Take the responsibilities out of the equasion and this does explain the parental behavior rather well.


============
IF I were Merida's father, at some point I would have had her go out and work the fields and livestock all day, with the rest of the non-nobles. If she was happier doing that for better or for worse and having a simple life, rather than one of nobility and responsibility, well then some arrangements would have to be made with the other clans, also for better or for worse.

On the other hand, it might also have been a sharp contrast to the privileges of nobility. At which point all mother or father had to do was say "See? We all have to do things we don't like. Thats why your father pulls out the good booze on the weekends. Jump through a few hoops, accept a few new responsibilities and we'll see what we can do regarding those privileges of yours."

pendell
2012-06-28, 10:50 AM
Yeah, her father pretty much said the same thing. He got the concept, why is everyone else having such a hard time empathizing with it?
I think he just understood that she's a child.
What did I want to be when I grew up? At age 4 I wanted to be a Transformer. At age 6 I wanted to be a Ghostbuster. At age 8 I wanted to stay at home and read from sunrise until sunset, which got me some pretty odd looks when I said that.
She's a child. She's not yet a noble, regardless of her education.



And I would agree with all of that except for one point: This is marriage we're talking about.

Merida has been a good little princess in every other way. She learns to dress the dress, walk the walk, play chess and all the rest of it. She is not "bone idle", but stepping up to the role tradition has laid out for her. On the weekends she runs away for a little while to be an outlaw, but after she's let off her steam she comes back and she's ready to be dutiful princess again.

The one place where this breaks down is when she is being forced to marry a man against her will. And remember, this is an old-school marriage. Till death do us part sort of thing. It goes right to the core of human self-identity. She will no longer be the child of her parents, but a wife and (probably) the mother of several children of her own.

It's a decision that goes to the very core of her being and will impact her life , and the life of any children she may have, and her husband, for the rest of their lives. And because of the effect she has on her children, and the effect they will have on her children's children, the ripples from this one decision -- who she marries -- are going to last for generations. Centuries.

This is something that absolutely, positively, must be got right, and I for one fully support her when she says that she ought to have some say in whether or not she surrenders her body, her life, and her future into the hands of a stranger. "You have to marry from these three because tradition demands it" isn't a good enough answer, even in a culture where an arranged marriage is the norm.

ISTR that Yiddish culture has matchmakers, and so the marriages are arranged in that sense, but the prospective bride and groom still have to agree. If one or the other won't go through with it, the matchmaker has to go out and find another match.

So I would say that even in cultures where arranged marriages are the norm it's still considered wrong to attempt to force a woman to marry someone she absolutely cannot , will not, accept. That's what Elinor is attempting, and Merida is right to say "no". Even in the context of their own culture. Which is why you'll notice neither the father nor the others are trying to ram this down her throat -- mom is. Because in this one respect, mom is in the wrong.

Respectfully,

Brian P.

Fragenstein
2012-06-28, 10:52 AM
By saying she wants to frolic in the woods all day, does no one grasp the concept that she doesn't want to be a nobleperson?

It's not really up to her. She was born a nobleperson.


Heck, lets take this a bit further. She's a child. She doesn't want to grow up. Is everyone's inner-child that dead that you can't empathize with another child who doesn't want to grow up?

She lives in a barbaric world where there's not much choice. People die if she doesn't quickly grasp the concept that she's something of a national asset. Growing up with the weight of so many people relying on you making the correct choices was never meant to be easy.

The father coddling that behavior reflects rather poorly on him. But, then again, so does the failure to assure the kingdom of a worthy heir.

Karoht
2012-06-28, 11:24 AM
It's not really up to her. She was born a nobleperson.I was born a caucasian human male. There are days I wish that were different. Mostly due to the actions of others. She wishes she wasn't born a nobleperson, clearly.



She lives in a barbaric world where there's not much choice. People die if she doesn't quickly grasp the concept that she's something of a national asset. Growing up with the weight of so many people relying on you making the correct choices was never meant to be easy.People relying on her for arbitrary reasons.
What's that? If she doesn't marry than there will be a war? Why? Because tradition says so?
It's not like if she chooses poorly there will be widespread famine or disease. These burdens weren't just placed on her, they were crafted by others and then placed on her at birth. To be honest, I'm utterly surprised she doesn't flip them all the bird and walk out.
Seriously, consider the absurdity of it.
"If your daughter doesn't marry my son, 3 families are going to declare war on you that will result in the deaths of many many people."
War. Not because of an actual offense commited where one has lost life or limb or property, but because of a lack of a wedding.
They will commit murder on a very large scale because the son remains a bachelor? Wow. Pathetic. Backwards. Arbitrary. She has every right and reason to reject that.
Maybe she doesn't want to be an asset. Maybe, and this could be crazy and all, maybe she wants to be a PERSON and not an OBJECT. Yeah, because that isn't a normal desire or anything.



The father coddling that behavior reflects rather poorly on him. But, then again, so does the failure to assure the kingdom of a worthy heir.He has 3 perfectly fine sons and a worthy daughter. So far he's doing fine for heirs.


========

It goes right to the core of human self-identity.

This is something that absolutely, positively, must be got right, and I for one fully support her when she says that she ought to have some say in whether or not she surrenders her body, her life, and her future into the hands of a stranger.Thank you, someone gets it.

Fragenstein
2012-06-28, 12:01 PM
I was born a caucasian human male. There are days I wish that were different. Mostly due to the actions of others. She wishes she wasn't born a nobleperson, clearly.

Fortunately for you, there are ways for you to change that. Gender, racial and social conventions are more fluid in our less-barbaric age. We're able to cross boundaries that, in her age, are more rigidly enforced.



People relying on her for arbitrary reasons.
What's that? If she doesn't marry than there will be a war? Why? Because tradition says so?

Not so arbitrary. Hers is an era where survival is not so easy. Marriage can help establish rights to land and resource or just ensure a stable ruling order. One clan's authority might be higher than another's because of direct relations to the current monarchy.

Believe it or not, this is a much more peacful way to live than beating each others' brains out. Keep in mind the barbarism the people in this particular story are living under.


It's not like if she chooses poorly there will be widespread famine or disease. These burdens weren't just placed on her, they were crafted by others and then placed on her at birth. To be honest, I'm utterly surprised she doesn't flip them all the bird and walk out.
Seriously, consider the absurdity of it.
"If your daughter doesn't marry my son, 3 families are going to declare war on you that will result in the deaths of many many people."

Of course they were crafted by others. They were crafted because they cann help to avoid war.


War. Not because of an actual offense commited where one has lost life or limb or property, but because of a lack of a wedding.

More specifically, because that wedding can help determine the use of land and resources, as I said. War wasn't silly and frivolous, it was sometimes a matter of survival.


They will commit murder on a very large scale because the son remains a bachelor?

Or because they need the land use, the authority and the other grants that comes from an arranged marriage as important as this.


Wow. Pathetic. Backwards. Arbitrary.

My god... It's almost... barbaric?


She has every right and reason to reject that.

Unless the rejection of the marriage returns her barbaric society to a state of anarchy where the established heirarchy begins to break down. Because, you know, their society is by nature violent and bloody.


He has 3 perfectly fine sons and a worthy daughter. So far he's doing fine for heirs.

The story itself projects her importance as the first born. You have to recognize her role as presented by the storytellers themselves.

Karoht
2012-06-28, 12:15 PM
Fortunately for you, there are ways for you to change that. Gender, racial and social conventions are more fluid in our less-barbaric age. We're able to cross boundaries that, in her age, are more rigidly enforced.Your arguement is rather bizarre here. I can change what I am physically, and that is acceptable, but try to change what I am socially and that is wrong?



My god... It's almost... barbaric?Uh yeah, and barbarisim was just as stupid back then as it is now. Why are we arguing this?



Unless the rejection of the marriage returns her barbaric society to a state of anarchy where the established heirarchy begins to break down. Because, you know, their society is by nature violent and bloody.Or, her taking a stand causes people to think critically and change. Hey, didn't that more or less happen in the movie? Oh wait, you're more or less arguing that she shouldn't have done that. Because status quo was just so awesome back then.



The story itself projects her importance as the first born. You have to recognize her role as presented by the storytellers themselves.That she's a child acting as a child would when being forced into something she doesn't like, which is a larger overarching metaphor for hanging on to one's childhood? Then yes.
As for viablity of heirs, there were many occasions where the first born was not chosen in favor of the second or third, and with good reason. The rulers saw that their firstborn was unfit/unwilling, and rather than try to fit a round peg into a square hole, simply picked the perfectly viable square peg, made an exception to the rule, and no one really thought anything of it.
"We are going to start a war because the firstborn didn't marry when she's an unfit heir" is equally nonsensical as forcing her to marry and then complaining that she's an unfit ruler.


You seem to be using the word 'barbaric' where I would use the word 'idiotic' in the same context. Just pointing that out.

Anarion
2012-06-28, 12:22 PM
Okay guys, hold on, you're both taking really extreme positions. Merida's world is medieval, but not altogether barbaric. Most of the people are quite reasonable, but somewhat hotblooded in nature. On the other hand, the idea of an arranged marriage in her world seems completely fine and everyone expected it, so it wasn't the most horrible thing ever, just a limitation on Merida's liberty. Considering Merida was probably capable of hog-tieing her future husband in her sleep, I don't think it would even have been that big of a deal for her, though she would have been forced to leave home and been unhappy.

The thing is, Merida loudly demanded that tradition be changed, and it turned out when she did it, everyone was actually okay with changing the tradition. And I find it surprising that nobody could figure that out until it happened. Didn't anyone talk to those young kids? Didn't Merida's mother or father ever sit down and have discussions with the clan leaders and figure out their personalities? Indeed we saw repeatedly that Merida's mother was capable of getting all those men to do pretty much whatever she wanted. So my problem is that I find it hard to believe that nobody could figure out that tradition wasn't so strong after all, even with Merida making such a big deal out of it.

Fragenstein
2012-06-28, 12:34 PM
Your arguement is rather bizarre here. I can change what I am physically, and that is acceptable, but try to change what I am socially and that is wrong?[QUOTE]

Oh, I think you misunderstand. I'm remarking that we live in a more peaceful era than Merida. We can disregard certain circumstances of our birth without witnessing such dire consequences.

We can walk away from kin, country and more without the certainty of war. That's a luxury we have as commoners in a world with free trade and a relative lack of want. Even our various heads of state are enjoying the benefits of a more enlightened age.

But don't forget that there are still places in the world where resources are not so freely shared.


[QUOTE]Uh yeah, and barbarisim was just as stupid back then as it is now. Why are we arguing this?

Because the route Merida took to revolt against that barbarism is just going to cause bloodshed. She can either work within the system and try to prevent the loss of life, even at the cost of her own liberty, or she can just throw a tantrum and watch her world burn.



Or, her taking a stand causes people to think critically and change. Hey, didn't that more or less happen in the movie? Oh wait, you're more or less arguing that she shouldn't have done that. Because status quo was just so awesome back then.

Not awesome, but a reality that wasn't going to change simply because she demanded it.



You seem to be using the word 'barbaric' where I would use the word 'idiotic' in the same context. Just pointing that out.

Certainly it appears stupid from a civilized point of view. From theirs, however, it's a matter of survival. Resources that can be seized through war might mean life or death for some people.

There eventually came a time when authorities needed to start establishing various boundaries in ways that didn't involve bloodshed. Arranged marriages helped to frame more peaceful solutions to problems we just don't see in the modern world.

Pre-industrial societies are rough. Many people had to give up what they wanted to do for what they had to do. For the responsible ruling classes, this sometimes meant sacrificing their own lives in more ways than one.

pendell
2012-06-28, 12:34 PM
So my problem is that I find it hard to believe that nobody could figure out that tradition wasn't so strong after all, even with Merida making such a big deal out of it.



Because "tradition" in this case really came to "What Merida's mother Elinor wanted". Which is a subtly different thing from "the consensus of the clans".

If that wasn't the case, tradition wouldn't have been changed so easily once Mum came around. As it turns out, mum was the only real obstacle. "Tradition" in this case is simply an excuse for the mother to force Merida to walk down the same path she had been forced down, against her will.

That's the other side of the coin and one I've seen too much of -- there are children put into a specific situation specifically because their parents had to go through it, and if it's good enough for us it's good enough for you. I've known people who RESENTED with a passion the good fortune of their offspring, because they had what the parents didn't. If the parent went through childhood without toys, the kid has to go through childhood without toys too. You can't rise above my level.

I sense that dynamic in a big way in that household. I think Elinor resents Merida's bow because Elinor wanted one as a child also, and she couldn't have one but Merida can. She was forced into an arranged marriage against her will, and I think it drives her mad that her child might not have to go through the same thing she did.

Merida has a problem. But a lot of her problem isn't to do with her life or with the clans. Her problem is that her mother doesn't respect her wishes and has no problems ramming things down her throat without consulting her, such as setting up this whole betrothal ceremony in the first place.

The problem the two have is that they hate each other and are willing to resort to violence to get their way rather than consider the other persons' feelings. Which is why the ultimate solution is for them to learn to respect each other on their little journey and stop treating the other as an obstacle.

Respectfully,

Brian P.

Karoht
2012-06-28, 12:52 PM
Not awesome, but a reality that wasn't going to change simply because she demanded it.I get the feeling that we didn't watch the same film here.
She demanded it. She made a scene. She drew attention to the issue.
Yes, people got upity about it.
Then she came in, explains her position and the issue in greater detail, the clans all stop and think for a moment, and change takes place. She made no concession to them, beyond apologizing for overreacting and embarassing them all.
So yes, demanding change works, in the right context. Historically it is about the only way changes have ever taken place. Rosa Parks and all that.



There eventually came a time when authorities needed to start establishing various boundaries in ways that didn't involve bloodshed. Arranged marriages helped to frame more peaceful solutions to problems we just don't see in the modern world.The fact that authorities could not solve their differences in any way other than selling off their children to one another is no better justification for their actions than solving their differences with violence.
It's not quite tantamount to saying 'we had no other recourse than war' mind you, but it is definitely no better.


"Thems is the way things are" is a very poor justification overall. Particularly when contrasted to someone resisting 'the way things are'
Her resisting 'the way things are' is kind of the point.

Fragenstein
2012-06-28, 12:53 PM
Because "tradition" in this case really came to "What Merida's mother Elinor wanted". Which is a subtly different thing from "the consensus of the clans".

Well, you do have me there. Anarion below seems to be pointing this out as something of a plot hole, however. If so, I think I agree with him.

It's difficult to reconcile the early story about the dereliction of duty with the fact that the clans aren't really all that violent. The thought of various treaties being enforced solely because of the bitternes of one lady is a bit out there.

One would have expected the clans to be a little more serious in their roughhousing. This seems to be an aspect of the story that was better told in "Tangled".

Fawkes
2012-06-28, 02:02 PM
I sense that dynamic in a big way in that household. I think Elinor resents Merida's bow because Elinor wanted one as a child also, and she couldn't have one but Merida can. She was forced into an arranged marriage against her will, and I think it drives her mad that her child might not have to go through the same thing she did.

That's an interesting read, but I don't think the information given in the movie backs that up. There's no indication of Elinor ever wanting a bow, and as far as we can tell, she's perfectly fine with her arranged marriage.


Well, you do have me there. Anarion below seems to be pointing this out as something of a plot hole, however. If so, I think I agree with him.

It's difficult to reconcile the early story about the dereliction of duty with the fact that the clans aren't really all that violent. The thought of various treaties being enforced solely because of the bitternes of one lady is a bit out there.

Exactly. The conflict being resolved so simply really weakens the movie for me. It just doesn't make sense for Elinor to be the entire reason behind the arranged marriage tradition.

Anarion
2012-06-28, 03:24 PM
Actually, I found Pendell's explanation pretty convincing. And since it's more the mother's personal problem, I think it actually justifies Merida in getting as upset as she does. Wanting your freedom at the expense of your Mom's pride is a lot more reasonable than wanting your freedom at risk of a war.

Avilan the Grey
2012-06-28, 04:14 PM
My god... It's almost... barbaric?\

Of course IRL the old Kelts were not all that barbaric. Neither were the Vikings. Barbarian, after all, is just a term coined to express ridicule on everyone that is not Greek Athenian. And I mean EVERYONE. Including Spartans and Macedonians.


Actually, I found Pendell's explanation pretty convincing. And since it's more the mother's personal problem, I think it actually justifies Merida in getting as upset as she does. Wanting your freedom at the expense of your Mom's pride is a lot more reasonable than wanting your freedom at risk of a war.

I wonder if there is cut material from the film expanding the mother's role and history in this? As I said I have not watched it yet.

Jayngfet
2012-06-28, 04:36 PM
Actually, I found Pendell's explanation pretty convincing. And since it's more the mother's personal problem, I think it actually justifies Merida in getting as upset as she does. Wanting your freedom at the expense of your Mom's pride is a lot more reasonable than wanting your freedom at risk of a war.

...I'm actually gonna agree. The clans may have been on the edge of war due to the archery contest thing, but the situation only ever arose because Elinor decided to throw it on everyone with no warning. If Meridia was aware the letters were being sent out when they were instead of having it dumped on her when the responses came things would probably be much more reasonable.

I don't recall the actual line, but I know there was something early on that implied Elinor wasn't exactly thrilled about her marriage either. It'd be perfectly within her character to try to force the same resentment on her family and project herself onto Meridia. It was a pretty big point of the same scene that the main problem wasn't the wedding itself so much as the lack of communication between the parties involved.

VanBuren
2012-06-29, 04:51 AM
It's not really up to her. She was born a nobleperson.

Meh. Destiny is overrated.

McStabbington
2012-06-30, 10:03 AM
Actually, I found Pendell's explanation pretty convincing. And since it's more the mother's personal problem, I think it actually justifies Merida in getting as upset as she does. Wanting your freedom at the expense of your Mom's pride is a lot more reasonable than wanting your freedom at risk of a war.

I would soften that stance a little bit: what's really kept the peace these last twenty years, to judge by the movie, hasn't been a marriage so much as the force of Elinor's personality. While each of the clan leaders have their difficulties with the king and with each other, they all attach tremendous reverence to the Queen. Elinor's mistake then is simply the common mistake of believing that the way she has solved the problem for the last twenty years or so was the only way the problem could be solved, and as a result has been busily trying to build Merida into Elinor 2.0 to do the same job. The problem that this mistake causes, of course, is that while Elinor seemed happy with what she was, Merida wasn't happy being Elinor, and it's only until Elinor can't rely on her usual charm and presence that she tries another method that turns out to be successful as well.

Scowling Dragon
2012-07-04, 07:21 PM
Watching the Movie again didn't help. The first time around I wasn't paying attention and found myself mostly playing on the Iphone. The second time; I hated the movie (Its not awful, but I found myself hating Merida SO BAD)

Let me tell you of the queen. She is kind. She loves her daughter and is possibly one of the strongest, most female empowering character I have seen in a movie in all my short life.

She is the sole conductor of law, in the chaos of savagery.

The scene where the four representatives fall into a (At the time chummy and lighthearted) fight over a few insults, HER VERY PRESENCE causes awe from the males. The second she steps in they stop fighting. And like a beacon of power she walks to the fighting leaders and LITERALLY drags these barbaric hunks of meat by the ear.

In addition, she is a very loving mother. The second she hears that a bear is on the loose (At the time not knowing it was her) the first thing she did was shield her daughter with her own body.

When she is given the ability to defend her daughter (In the form of beyah powers) she uses all her might to defeat a mythic cursed prince (Also a nice touch of the movie revealing that the oldest son was not evil looking but was actually calm and handsom)

And when is anger (after her bratty daughter cuts the really nice looking tapestry she made on her own and embarrassed the lords)she throws her daughters bow into the fire, IMMEDIATELY after she instantly feels regret.

Eventually, she manages to convince the lords to let her daughter have her way (She was the one who came up with the concept. Merida just mimed it) because she is just that clever.

And even as a bear she wakes up before her daughter to make her food (Granted that food was bad but the level of effort just showed just how much she cared).

Now let me tell you of Merida. She is selfish, bratty , self-centered, never thinks of others, and a hypocrite.

She is selfish as it never crosses her mind that a war may break out. And never thinks from her mothers perspective

She is a hypocrite as she prances through her fancy castle (Safe from storms that other stuff that peasants die of pneumonia from), eating the feasts that her lowly peasants made for her (That would never get to eat in their entire lives) because of her princess status. But responsibilities and expectations are hawd and unfaiw.

As her father put it "I want to ride into the sunset shooting my bow on a mighty steed" (Or something like that)

She wants to eat all the cakes in the bakery. But she doesn't want to pay the bill.

She sees a witch brewing some horrific goo (Would it take the witch dropping babies into the mix to give Merida a clue?) in a cauldron and taking out a single tart.

Oh yeah, feed that **** your mother. And when her mother starts feeling IMMEDIATELY ill the only thing merida thought about was herself.

And then blames the witch.

Also one more thing. The writers overdid it by having Merdia kick the collective asses of people twice her size whilst protecting her mother, and shooting her bow so well that it would make robin hood emberassed (Lets not just have her split an arrow in two. Lets have it go the entire target!)

Its as if the writers didn't know how to make a strong female character without giving superman strength. The way they overdid it rings false and cartoonish to the point where it is insulting.

But that would be OK if she wen't through an arc and learned something. But here is the problem.

She doesn't. She suffers Zeroh consequences for her actions. The entire movie builds until she needs to accept her actions, take some responsibility and marry for the sake of the kingdom. But then her sacrifice is made moot and she doesn't need to accept responsibility at all.

She suffers no consequences for her actions. At all. She gets to have her cakes. And eat them too.

And the ending narration has her talking about how fate and destiny can be changed if your brave enough...But in reality she was stupid, selfish and got away with what she wanted because her mother was so awesome. This narration makes it feel like this is what she learned. "I can get away with anything as long as I make enough of a fuss"

Her MOTHER goes through an arc and becomes more accepting. But Merida doesn't.

2/6 for the movie. Everything but the main character was fun, and interesting (Though the witch with her pop-culture references was out of place). But Merida made me wan't to break her annoying smug neck.

VanBuren
2012-07-04, 07:31 PM
All the people claiming that Merida had no development must have been watching a completely different movie than I was. Because I definitely saw a girl who began to realize that actions have consequences. Not that it meant she suddenly agreed with everything her mother thought, but it became clear to both of them at the end that nobody was wrong per se, but that didn't mean that they didn't have blind spots or that there weren't other opinions worth acknowledging.

Scowling Dragon
2012-07-04, 07:38 PM
Because I definitely saw a girl who began to realize that actions have consequences.

And didn't have to suffer any of them. And the IN NARRATION talks about changing fate if your brave enough. NOT accepting it.

You must have watched a great movie. I wish I was there with you to watch it.

Im completely with the mother here. What should have her mother done? Let a war happen because her precious little brat doesn't want any responsibilities?

VanBuren
2012-07-04, 10:02 PM
And didn't have to suffer any of them.

That whole middle part of the movie? Those were the consequences. Any punishment on top of that would have been pointless, suitable only for retribution and not teaching any kind of lesson. That's worthless as discipline.

She knows she did something bad. She knows why it was bad. She's doing all that she can to try and fix it. And she's not going to do it again. What else do you want?


And the IN NARRATION talks about changing fate if your brave enough. NOT accepting it.

Yeah. She was still right about changing her fate, it's just that it ended up taking maturity, communication, and compromise. Not OMG YOU DON'T UNDERSTAND ME.


You must have watched a great movie. I wish I was there with you to watch it.

Eh, it wasn't Toy Story.


Im completely with the mother here. What should have her mother done? Let a war happen because her precious little brat doesn't want any responsibilities?

I dunno. The third option they ended up going with seemed to work pretty well. You can't really argue that there was "no other way" when the movie ends with them successfully finding one. Part of the problem is that it took the events of the movie for them to figure out what shouldn't have been all that difficult. But I enjoyed the men being bros, so that's cool.

EDIT: But I'm curious. Which of the three clans did Merida's family come from?

Jayngfet
2012-07-04, 10:44 PM
Im completely with the mother here. What should have her mother done? Let a war happen because her precious little brat doesn't want any responsibilities?

Tell "her precious little brat" that she was about to get married to begin with? I mean the main problem here is that she apparently has been organising this WEEKS ago but keeping the person that actually has to go through with it in the dark.

The clans didn't strike me as being on the brink of war or rebellion, and until the wedding got messed up seemed more like buddies and friendly rivals than any sort of bitter enemies. There'd never have even been a mention of war from anyone that wasn't Elanor is she'd bothered communicating.

Anarion
2012-07-04, 10:54 PM
You must have watched a great movie. I wish I was there with you to watch it.


I did watch a great movie, but I'm beginning to think that its theme wasn't universal, and that's why people didn't like it as much as other Pixar films.

Seems to me, from this discussion, that Brave is only good if you believe in the individual over the collective, and if you think that self-sacrifice for the good of others isn't always the right thing to do. Not everyone thinks this way. Some people believe that if you're born into a role or given a duty, then you have to fulfill it, no matter how much it makes you miserable. In some sense, this is the mantra of every paladin ever, even the wise and thoughtful ones.

So, yes. If you thought Merida had a duty and she ignored it because she was a willful brat, you're going to think the movie was terrible. If you're a little more chaotic in alignment and think that sometimes society gives people unfair obligations, I think you'd see the movie differently.

Scowling Dragon
2012-07-04, 11:15 PM
That whole middle part of the movie? Those were the consequences.

SHE didn't suffer them. HER MOTHER did. She had a normal time. She spent one day in the wild. Just like she wanted.

EVERYBODY ELSE suffered the consequences. And thats what I find so annoying about the movie.


She knows she did something bad. She knows why it was bad. She's doing all that she can to try and fix it. And she's not going to do it again. What else do you want?

Her mother remaining a bear/ dead. Now THAT would have shown the TRUE horror of her actions. That her actions had permanent resounding negative results.

But in the end everything is hunky dory and even better then before. Maybe she should poison more people. Because in the end, everything she does is for the better.

Its like if in a story a pacifist must kill a man to save his family. And he is about to go through with it. His life will be changed forev-...Never mind, the man died if a heart attack. No need for hard decisions here.


Yeah. She was still right about changing her fate, it's just that it ended up taking maturity, communication, and compromise. Not OMG YOU DON'T UNDERSTAND ME.

I didn't see any of that. I can agree that at the end, she shows some remorse. But by that time I didn't care. The STORY deflated its climax. Its buildup was rendered moot by Merida not needing to make any hard decisions and getting exactly what she wanted. By that time I had suffered through her annoying selfish prickish self so long I didn't care. I just wan'ted to punch that walking cliche in the face (Shes a I want more/ Im more baddass then everybody because Im a STRONG female character cliche mix).

You know what she got from her experience? Exactly what she wanted. That is what infuriates me. The spoiled hypocritical brat got exactly what she wanted.

She has her cake and eats it too.


Eh, it wasn't Toy Story.

THAT I can say for certain.


I dunno. The third option they ended up going with seemed to work pretty well.

I agree. I find that it didn't make sense, because the suitors ended up wanting after her anyway, But whatever.

But that was a very risky move.

It could have easily (And MUCH more likely) resusulted in "What? You miserable little worm! Your trying to weesel out of this one!"

"Yeah! I want to marry you! And your just dancing around the issue"

Followed by bloodshed.

Just because it DID work out doesn't mean it could have backfired horribly in many ways. And it almost did. Change a few small circumstances and things go even worse (Lets say the sons where not there to support the idea/ They didn't support the idea/ The fathers didn't care about their sons opinions)


EDIT: But I'm curious. Which of the three clans did Merida's family come from?

She came from the fourth.


Seems to me, from this discussion, that Brave is only good if you believe in the individual over the collective, and if you think that self-sacrifice for the good of others isn't always the right thing to do.

Ugh. Now Im having ideas about Star Trek 2 With Spock having meridas will.

"Ugh, but I don't want to die. Here Il trip Macoy into the room to do it for me"

But yes. This is true for me. If she was more like-able I would be more sympathetic to her plight. But she was insufferable. Mostly because of the hypocrisy.


Tell "her precious little brat" that she was about to get married to begin with? I mean the main problem here is that she apparently has been organising this WEEKS ago but keeping the person that actually has to go through with it in the dark.

I agree with that. She should have done that. But Merida would have likely done the same thing.


The clans didn't strike me as being on the brink of war or rebellion, and until the wedding got messed up seemed more like buddies and friendly rivals than any sort of bitter enemies.

I saw this more as tension that was there under the surface, but everybody has their own opinion.

Anarion
2012-07-04, 11:45 PM
@Scowling Dragon: Why does everyone need to suffer the consequences of their actions? If someone does a stupid thing one time, must they suffer for it? Even if they realize they were stupid without suffering?

Moreover, why do you ignore consequences such as fear and emotional pain? Must all consequences be permanent to having meaning?

Jayngfet
2012-07-04, 11:45 PM
SHE didn't suffer them. HER MOTHER did. She had a normal time. She spent one day in the wild. Just like she wanted.

EVERYBODY ELSE suffered the consequences. And thats what I find so annoying about the movie.


She kind of did have to suffer watching her mother go through a horrible experience she knows was her fault. THAT can feel crappy dude. Besides, what would be the POINT of her suffering further?



Her mother remaining a bear/ dead. Now THAT would have shown the TRUE horror of her actions. That her actions had permanent resounding negative results.

But in the end everything is hunky dory and even better then before. Maybe she should poison more people. Because in the end, everything she does is for the better.


Of course you're looking for the wrong moral here. You're looking for "the nail that sticks out gets hammered down" when the message is "If you want change, work for it and don't be stupid about it."



Its like if in a story a pacifist must kill a man to save his family. And he is about to go through with it. His life will be changed forev-...Never mind, the man died if a heart attack. No need for hard decisions here.


That's kind of an exagerration and oversimplification. Meridia still DID things instead of just sitting there like this statement implies.



I didn't see any of that. I can agree that at the end, she shows some remorse. But by that time I didn't care. The STORY deflated its climax. Its buildup was rendered moot by Merida not needing to make any hard decisions and getting exactly what she wanted. By that time I had suffered through her annoying selfish prickish self so long I didn't care. I just wan'ted to punch that walking cliche in the face (Shes a I want more/ Im more baddass then everybody because Im a STRONG female character cliche mix).

You know what she got from her experience? Exactly what she wanted. That is what infuriates me. The spoiled hypocritical brat got exactly what she wanted.

She has her cake and eats it too.


Yeah, Meridia is kind of insufferable but really the problem is at this point you're no longer remaining objective and instead are focused on hating the character as intensely as possible.




I agree. I find that it didn't make sense, because the suitors ended up wanting after her anyway, But whatever.

But that was a very risky move.

It could have easily (And MUCH more likely) resusulted in "What? You miserable little worm! Your trying to weesel out of this one!"

"Yeah! I want to marry you! And your just dancing around the issue"

Followed by bloodshed.


...that... doesn't really strike me as being consistent with anybody's character. I mean that kind of statement kind of requires a specific mix of petty and aggressive nobody seemed to have. I mean the lords were all petty and aggressive but in separate ways.



Just because it DID work out doesn't mean it could have backfired horribly in many ways. And it almost did. Change a few small circumstances and things go even worse (Lets say the sons where not there to support the idea/ They didn't support the idea/ The fathers didn't care about their sons opinions)



She came from the fourth.


Yeah, there's always a risk in ANYTHING. Her mincing along not taking any risks would be boring, inconsistent with her character, and would have basically turned her into Sansa Stark, and we all know how popular SHE is.



Ugh. Now Im having ideas about Star Trek 2 With Spock having meridas will.

"Ugh, but I don't want to die. Here Il trip Macoy into the room to do it for me"

But yes. This is true for me. If she was more like-able I would be more sympathetic to her plight. But she was insufferable. Mostly because of the hypocrisy.


I you're starting to go off onto tangents, which are full of spelling errors. This doesn't really bode well.



I agree with that. She should have done that. But Merida would have likely done the same thing.

I dunno, her specific wording made it clear what she wanted and why. The whole conflict was set up from the beginning as the mother being too controlling and inconsiderate. Obviously the way this was set up is an extension of that.




I saw this more as tension that was there under the surface, but everybody has their own opinion.

I won't deny there was tension, but the amount of it and what's sparked it off is what's up for debate. I'm not going to call Meridia a saint so much as say she and Elanor are both equally terrible people.

Scowling Dragon
2012-07-05, 12:13 AM
She kind of did have to suffer watching her mother go through a horrible experience she knows was her fault. THAT can feel crappy dude. Besides, what would be the POINT of her suffering further?
I didn't see that until the very end. Mostly she just chuckles at her misery and complains about her incompetence, until the end when she cries that she is a bear.


Of course you're looking for the wrong moral here. You're looking for "the nail that sticks out gets hammered down" when the message is "If you want change, work for it and don't be stupid about it."

Which is again infuriating when the main character is a brat.

I see the moral "Make a fuss. Your bound to get everything exactly whow you wan't somehow"


That's kind of an exagerration and oversimplification. Meridia still DID things instead of just sitting there like this statement implies.

Im talking about the main buildup. She ends up NOT having to accept responsibility.

Maybe I should change it too "And then the man has an action scene post the buildup deflation".


Yeah, Meridia is kind of insufferable but really the problem is at this point you're no longer remaining objective and instead are focused on hating the character as intensely as possible.

How. The story ends up revolving around her (As much as I wish it revolved around the mother)



...that... doesn't really strike me as being consistent with anybody's character. I mean that kind of statement kind of requires a specific mix of petty and aggressive nobody seemed to have. I mean the lords were all petty and aggressive but in separate ways.

Lets say one of them had an arrow sticking in his head post the battle and the other one had his sons arm cut off. Yeah. Much less likely to be happy and willing then.


Yeah, there's always a risk in ANYTHING. Her mincing along not taking any risks would be boring, inconsistent with her character, and would have basically turned her into Sansa Stark, and we all know how popular SHE is.
I don't know sansa stark. I understand the risk payed off, but its like saying

"I know I spend my last five bucks on lottery tickets, but I won right?"

Im not saying i didn't expect her to do that. Im saying that it was a 1/100000 scenario.


I you're starting to go off onto tangents, which are full of spelling errors. This doesn't really bode well.

I tend to do that sometimes. I should calm down. That was just petty what I did.


I dunno, her specific wording made it clear what she wanted and why. The whole conflict was set up from the beginning as the mother being too controlling and inconsiderate. Obviously the way this was set up is an extension of that.

I found myself siding with the mother. She WAS controlling. She WAS tough (I wouldn't say inconsiderate though) but she was preparing her for life. What should have she done? Let her daughter reap all the rewards and do no work?


I'm not going to call Meridia a saint so much as say she and Elanor are both equally terrible people.

Im not. Im going to say the Elanor is a great mother for the time period (I would be appalled at arranged mariages today. The time was not today. I would be appalled at a mother that would let her daughter run around with a bow and arrow today. But not back then) that loves her daughter and loves her country.

Jayngfet
2012-07-05, 12:49 AM
I didn't see that until the very end. Mostly she just chuckles at her misery and complains about her incompetence, until the end when she cries that she is a bear.


I'm not saying it was perfect, or even good, I'm just saying she didn't exactly go through it unscathed.



Which is again infuriating when the main character is a brat.

I see the moral "Make a fuss. Your bound to get everything exactly whow you wan't somehow"


She is, but really it's extremley rare to get things how you want it if you DON'T make a fuss.






How. The story ends up revolving around her (As much as I wish it revolved around the mother)




Lets say one of them had an arrow sticking in his head post the battle and the other one had his sons arm cut off. Yeah. Much less likely to be happy and willing then.


Yeah, but they didn't. They might have but they didn't is the thing.



"I know I spend my last five bucks on lottery tickets, but I won right?"

Im not saying i didn't expect her to do that. Im saying that it was a 1/100000 scenario.


That is, unfortunately, the nature of film. If someone takes a big risk in the last third of a movie it's pretty much a guarantee it's going to pay off.





I found myself siding with the mother. She WAS controlling. She WAS tough (I wouldn't say inconsiderate though) but she was preparing her for life. What should have she done? Let her daughter reap all the rewards and do no work?



Im not. Im going to say the Elanor is a great mother for the time period (I would be appalled at arranged mariages today. The time was not today. I would be appalled at a mother that would let her daughter run around with a bow and arrow today. But not back then) that loves her daughter and loves her country.


I think you're projecting a bit though. There's no real demonstration that anything Elanor taught would be useful in the slightest is the problem. I mean yeah if we saw a scene with her and the other noblewomen being all gentle and courtly I'd buy it'd be useful to know these things but every person that isn't her is loud, brutish, and boastful and almost every other female character is a shrieking serving wench. To contrast the things Meridia does are useful things shown to have application in the film multiple times. In the context of the film all of Elinor's skills are largely arbitrary outside maybe tapestry stuff.

Hell, even by any historical time period Elinor is a TERRIBLE mother. Again, the problem isn't arranged marriage, the problem is she's being overly controlling and lacks any sort of communication that would have been even more important then than now. An arranged marrige isn't "ok, here's three people you've never met before and we refused to tell you about. Go!" so much as "Ok, here's a bunch of well bred guys who seem reasonably competent and have no obvious physical deformities. Lets socialize a bit and you two can write letters for a year or two at least before even talking about ceremonies."

Scowling Dragon
2012-07-05, 01:01 AM
I'm not saying it was perfect, or even good, I'm just saying she didn't exactly go through it unscathed.
Too little scathing in my opinion in comparison to what she puts everybody else through.



She is, but really it's extremley rare to get things how you want it if you DON'T make a fuss.

But I DIDN'T want to see her get what she wants because she almost killed a bunch of people and lots of others suffered.

Yeah, but they didn't. They might have but they didn't is the thing.
Im meant that this was not a realistic third option until the moment was on the wire.

I think you're projecting a bit though. There's no real demonstration that anything Elanor taught would be useful in the slightest is the problem.

Except for the fact that all the leaders listen to her first, King second and the scenes where she calms down the raging horde?


Hell, even by any historical time period Elinor is a TERRIBLE mother. Again, the problem isn't arranged marriage, the problem is she's being overly controlling and lacks any sort of communication that would have been even more important then than now.
I will agree on lacking communication. But not on controlling. She lets Merida have her fun every once in a while. Whilst disagrees with her opinions actualy allows her to have her bow. If you see a montage of ANY parent showing controlling sides each one will look like a Tyrant.

They could have shown a montage of her being incredibly caring and we would have thought she was the best mother ever.


An arranged marrige isn't "ok, here's three people you've never met before and we refused to tell you about. Go!" so much as "Ok, here's a bunch of well bred guys who seem reasonably competent and have no obvious physical deformities. Lets socialize a bit and you two can write letters for a year or two at least before even talking about ceremonies."
Which I attribute to the plots fault then Elinors. Because I found her too competent and caring (in my opinion) to just fail at something as large and as inportant as that.

Avilan the Grey
2012-07-05, 01:07 AM
And didn't have to suffer any of them. And the IN NARRATION talks about changing fate if your brave enough. NOT accepting it.

You must have watched a great movie. I wish I was there with you to watch it.

Im completely with the mother here. What should have her mother done? Let a war happen because her precious little brat doesn't want any responsibilities?

Well I still can't wait to see it. What I have been able to find out about it seems to indicate that I will love it, and especially the main character.

And I guess it has to do with different perspectives of Freedom, and what is important. I have never subscribed to the Spock school of necessities; if you must sacrifice one person's happiness to save ten people, you better hope that person is willing to do the sacrificing. Because that person has the moral right to say Frakk You and go their merry way. Also, as far as I understand it, the war happens because the people doing the warring are overgrown man-children with no sense of responsibility of their own.


hich I attribute to the plots fault then Elinors. Because I found her too competent and caring (in my opinion) to just fail at something as large and as inportant as that.

So... you say your Fanon is correct and what the movie shows you didn't happen? Sorry, don't mean to sound insulting, I am just confused.

Jayngfet
2012-07-05, 01:22 AM
Too little scathing in my opinion in comparison to what she puts everybody else through.


But I DIDN'T want to see her get what she wants because she almost killed a bunch of people and lots of others suffered.

Im meant that this was not a realistic third option until the moment was on the wire.


I'm not denying it was a bit contrived, but you seem to be out for blood at this point more than looking for a good set of scenes.



Except for the fact that all the leaders listen to her first, King second and the scenes where she calms down the raging horde?


Which would have been a good thing for her to teach her daughter. Most of what she's shown doing is going on about table manners and complaining about how she speaks in private.



I will agree on lacking communication. But not on controlling. She lets Merida have her fun every once in a while. Whilst disagrees with her opinions actualy allows her to have her bow. If you see a montage of ANY parent showing controlling sides each one will look like a Tyrant.


They could have shown a montage of her being incredibly caring and we would have thought she was the best mother ever.


"allows her to have something, under protest, even women were known to have used frequently without complaint" isn't exactly mother of the year material.

And there WAS such a montage, and while it was heartfelt and all it was kinda short and weak, and too late in the film to affect the forming of an opinion on the character.



Which I attribute to the plots fault then Elinors. Because I found her too competent and caring (in my opinion) to just fail at something as large and as inportant as that.

That's what I mean about projecting. You're using your own biases to attribute to the character a greater significance to traits than there actually is. I'm getting the feeling I'm half getting your opinion on Elinor, and half getting your opinion on some other issue entirely.

Failing at large, important stuff early on is an extremely large part of character development and the way Elinor acts after becoming human again is meant to show she's moved beyond being the person who fails so easily at that kind of thing. If she just came out and told Meridia months or weeks or years in advance and Meridia still went off it'd have just made Meridia MORE hate worthy, and if her character didn't have anything resembling a redeeming feature she'd never have been someone you'd want to follow anyway. This was unfortunatly the closest thing to balance they could get for their premise. The premise is TERRIBLE, and that bleeds into everything else in the movie, but that's really something you can use to absolve Meridia as well as Elinor so the argument becomes pointless then.

VanBuren
2012-07-05, 01:31 AM
Which I attribute to the plots fault then Elinors.

Oh hi, double standard. I almost didn't see you there, buddy!

So you wanted Merida's mother to remain a bear and die, you wanted to see Merida severely punished in addition to that kind of trauma, and you apparently wanted to see the clans go to war in response to her actions.

I think I found the problem. You didn't go to see a Pixar movie. You went to see GrimDark: The Musical.

Brother Oni
2012-07-05, 02:23 AM
I think I found the problem. You didn't go to see a Pixar movie. You went to see GrimDark: The Musical.

You know, John Woo always said he wanted to do a musical...

VanBuren
2012-07-05, 02:29 AM
You know, John Woo always said he wanted to do a musical...

And let's be fair: I'd watch the **** out of that.

Killer Angel
2012-07-05, 04:03 AM
I have never subscribed to the Spock school of necessities; if you must sacrifice one person's happiness to save ten people, you better hope that person is willing to do the sacrificing. Because that person has the moral right to say Frakk You and go their merry way.

Debatable.
Utilitarianism states that what is morally good is what results in the greatest good for the greatest amount of people. Therefore, one innocent person that suffers to save many innocent people is morally good.
On the other side, the deontological ethics states that the morality of an action depends on the action itself, regardless of the consequences. Therefore, ends never justify the means in deontological ethics.

Now, I don't want absolutely enter in such a debate (GitP isn't the proper ground for "morally justifiable" threads), but this is a philosophycal issue that's pretty old (trolley problem, yadda yadda).

Edit: from a personal PoV, I woud go for utilitarianism, but this doesn't mean that, even if you're doing the "right" thing, you cannot suffer for it. You bear the consequences of your actions, even if done for a greater good.

Scowling Dragon
2012-07-05, 07:16 AM
I'm not denying it was a bit contrived, but you seem to be out for blood at this point more than looking for a good set of scenes.

Ok.


Which would have been a good thing for her to teach her daughter. Most of what she's shown doing is going on about table manners and complaining about how she speaks in private.

Thats tradition and stuff. Thats kind of Princessy stuff that was pointless at the time, but necessary because of tradition. Tradition that the lords (Even with the scene at the end) respected.

Also she did. She was teaching her how to speak in order for everybody in the room to hear her, which shows that she wasn't just teaching princess stuff. She WAS teaching her how to be a powerful Queen.


"allows her to have something, under protest, even women were known to have used frequently without complaint" isn't exactly mother of the year material.

Hey, Guess what my Dad thinks of all my hobbies. :smallannoyed:

It ISN'T mother of the year material. I will agree. But its not so horrible for the time. And I guess not that horrible to me.


And there WAS such a montage

It was a single scene. It was a single scene of happiness compared to rapid cuts of her telling Merida what to do.

The difference was that this was a flashback, showing that she was kind all along. Just merida didn't notice.


That's what I mean about projecting. You're using your own biases to attribute to the character a greater significance to traits than there actually is. I'm getting the feeling I'm half getting your opinion on Elinor, and half getting your opinion on some other issue entirely.

I meant that it was terribly contrived. It just doesn't make sense to me on multiple levels.

I know It came out wrong, and it made me sound like I thought the mother could do no wrong. Thats not true. She kinda sucks at communication, and doesn't get how to get her daughter to listen because she kinda forces stuff on her.

But Merida?

I genuinely hate the character, and I thought that the movie was way too contrived.

Like the fact that they BOTH try to sneak into the castle (Through a grate that leads through the well.....Whaaaaa?).

Hey dip****s, how about let the clumsy bear stay and let the athletic sneaky girl go in, grab the tapestry and get out. :smallannoyed:

My main problem with the movie is that I found Merida a despicable hypocrite. Found the mother much more agreeable, and that merida goes through an arc where the necessity for her to make a sacrifice is taken away and she gets everything that she wants thus making the arc pointless.

Avilan the Grey
2012-07-05, 08:04 AM
Debatable.
Utilitarianism states that what is morally good is what results in the greatest good for the greatest amount of people. Therefore, one innocent person that suffers to save many innocent people is morally good.

The point I am making is that it is wrong for you to force sacrifice on someone ELSE. The person him/herself, out of free will, might do the "right thing", but if you force him or her to do it against their will, you are at fault.

Killer Angel
2012-07-05, 08:09 AM
The point I am making is that it is wrong for you to force sacrifice on someone ELSE.

I know, but it's not unusual to have a "wrongness" forced on someone, for a greater good.
For example, medical personnel do this all the time when triage is needed. And I don't doubt they pay a price for their decisions.

Karoht
2012-07-05, 09:46 AM
And let's be fair: I'd watch the **** out of that.Seconded.


I have never subscribed to the Spock school of necessities; if you must sacrifice one person's happiness to save ten people, you better hope that person is willing to do the sacrificing.
The entire point of the film Star Trek 3 was Spock learning the value of the inverse of this logic, the team working and sacrificing to save the one. In other words, even Spock, master of logic, saw the flaw in this rigid form of thinking.
I am utterly and constantly shocked that people are STILL of the opinion that selling your kid up the river is acceptable to "save a nation." Especially after it has been pointed out that it largely that the nation didn't really need saving, and it didn't need Merida getting married to keep it together.

Tyndmyr
2012-07-05, 09:49 AM
Her mother is only trying to do what she thinks is best for her. You can't just kill someone for wronging you when all they're trying to do is keep you safe.

While I don't believe that murder was the answer in THIS scenario, I would like to disagree with this logic. The motive of the person trying to harm you is not a license to harm, nor should it rob someone of the right to self defense.

Consider, if you will, the extreme sci-fi trope of the computer that tries to keep humanity safe from ALL sources of harm. The hero invariably rebels against this stifling oppression, and generally ends up blowing the computer up or some similar outcome. This is an accepted social situation, and the motive of "keeping you safe" does not excuse the behavior of someone effectively keeping you in chains. The chains being particularly shiny and well padded is also insufficient reason.

No, you always have the right to resist being harmed, regardless of motive. Killing someone is...an extreme option to resist this, but one that is acceptable if lesser options are not sufficient.


I know, but it's not unusual to have a "wrongness" forced on someone, for a greater good.
For example, medical personnel do this all the time when triage is needed. And I don't doubt they pay a price for their decisions.

No, no. Not the same at all. Triage is merely selecting people for treatment when not all people can be treated. They are not inflicting things on people...quite the reverse. They are treating as many as they can, as best as they can.

Failure to do the maximum good is not the same as doing evil.

Scowling Dragon
2012-07-05, 11:35 AM
Especially after it has been pointed out that it largely that the nation didn't really need saving, and it didn't need Merida getting married to keep it together.

Again. The movie went the cheap cop-out route to make sure this didn't happen.

Now Im thinking of Star Trek Insurection where 600 selfish people denied hundreds of billions access to lifesaving medical treatment during a wartime.



Consider, if you will, the extreme sci-fi trope

Key word here.

Meridas a hypocrite. She eats the feasts, rests in her wonderful castle but does not want responsibility and expectation. All she needs to do is get married and she can continue to live in luxury and have fun whilst her peasants die of starvation working out in the fields.

A more accurate comparison is to a guy who wants to get paid but does not want to get a job.

Killer Angel
2012-07-05, 11:41 AM
No, no. Not the same at all. Triage is merely selecting people for treatment when not all people can be treated. They are not inflicting things on people...quite the reverse. They are treating as many as they can, as best as they can.

It depends from the PoV. Anecdote time!
When my cousin was a doctor on ambulance's service, once he found himself in a nasty situation, due to a bad car crash: the other ambulance with proper equipment was not at hand, and he had to choose one wounded (all of them were bad hurt) to be left waiting for the other ambulance.
My cousin took it the bad way: after that episode, he was used to say that "triage is not choosing who will be saved. Is choosing who can be left to maybe die", and the thing kinda shattered him.

Obviously, triage is not a combined marriage (:smalltongue:), but it's just to say that it's better to avoid absolute terms on such matters.

McStabbington
2012-07-05, 11:51 AM
Ok.
My main problem with the movie is that I found Merida a despicable hypocrite. Found the mother much more agreeable, and that merida goes through an arc where the necessity for her to make a sacrifice is taken away and she gets everything that she wants thus making the arc pointless.

I gotta second the assessment above: your problem is less the quality of the film than the fact that went to a Pixar film expecting to see MacBeth set in Westeros. The stated reason you find Merida a hypocrite is that she's willing to enjoy the benefits of nobility but not the costs. But the thing is, most of your assessments about the relative benefits of being a noble, to say nothing of how you're implicitly minimizing the costs, are just extrapolations on your part not based in the text of the film.

Put simply, where did we see in this film where being a peasant was so awful? I'll agree that we saw huge piles of food for the royal family, but I don't recall seeing any scenes of starving peasants. Nor any peasants who didn't look healthily fed. Nor any who were pissed off from lack of food. Everything I saw seemed to indicate that the peasants thought well of their nobility and seemed to be in relatively good shape. You know, like a typical Disney film set in a medieval setting.

Moreover, while you're imagining that the peasantry is on the verge of famine, you're also really minimizing what Elinor is asking of Merida, and that minimization only gets worse if we actually accept the premise that this is a gritty hard-nosed medieval setting. Because you know what happens to women who get married in gritty hard-nosed medieval settings? They get their vagina sold by their father to their husband, and their husband as with any other property of his, has the right to use it whenever and however he chooses. Yes, that's right: the notion that a wife could say no to her husband and that he would be legally and ethically obliged to listen to her lest he, you know, rape her? That's a concept in the law that's maybe 40 years old. It didn't exist in 1900, much less 500. The only way around it is to say that this isn't a gritty hard-nosed medieval world and everyone actually adheres to the notion of courtly manners and dignity. Which only happens in fantasies where everyone has enough food . . .

Yeah, so I'm afraid I'm not seeing a problem with Merida pushing back on this point. It's pushing back on a serious tradition, and done in a way that's more foolish than reasoned, but "foolish" is a long way from "bratty hypocrite". I would look at her a lot more askance if she just quietly went along with tradition, precisely because it's a terrible, immoral tradition even if it has great societal use.

Karoht
2012-07-05, 11:55 AM
Now Im thinking of Star Trek Insurection where 600 selfish people denied hundreds of billions access to lifesaving medical treatment during a wartime.Actually it was life extention technology designed to fight old age, though it did have an application in 'saving lives' that the Federation seemed oddly less concerned with. It was also hinted at that the tech was going to be horded by Federation higher-ups and would likely not seen front-lines.

Personal opinion that selling my daughter to save lives isn't an acceptable trade-off. Especially when the conflict it would trigger is largely arbitrary. Solving the cause of the conflict and addressing it rather than ignoring it will save MORE lives in the long run, AND prevent having to sell children in future.
If anything, Elenor is a coward for just accepting the problem as a tradition and not addressing the problem sooner.



Key word here.
Meridas a hypocrite. She eats the feasts, rests in her wonderful castle but does not want responsibility and expectation. All she needs to do is get married and she can continue to live in luxury and have fun whilst her peasants die of starvation working out in the fields.Clearly her upbringing didn't cover the importance of the arranged marriage. Clearly her upbringing didn't cover the importance of her supposed responsibility. Clearly, she's also a child and lacks the perspective of an adult, and is rejecting the only adult perspective that is trying to push the responsibility on her. Kind of like a normal teenager.

It's still rather odd for people to be whinging about the fact that she's a child in a story oriented towards mostly children, acting like a child.

I find it amusing how non-parents find her behavior odd, yet most parents I've spoken with simply looked at Merida and just shruged.



A more accurate comparison is to a guy who wants to get paid but does not want to get a job.Like a child who receives an allowance but has no responsibilities? That never ever happens in the real world.


@McStabbington
Spot on fellow! Spot on.

Scowling Dragon
2012-07-05, 01:34 PM
Actually it was life extention technology designed to fight old age, though it did have an application in 'saving lives' that the Federation seemed oddly less concerned with. It was also hinted at that the tech was going to be horded by Federation higher-ups and would likely not seen front-lines.

Except for curing Godris blindness. And lets not forget the rejuvenational properties (Hundreds of scientists and athletes restored to help society). And all the other possibilities that could be done with the stuff that was implied.

And the movie hinted at that because they knew that their conflict made no sense and was stupid (To the point that the company making the movie noticed it) so they needed to make the federation evil to make the space elves (Immortal smug jerks, that can be "One with nature" AND have magical space science) look good.



If anything, Elenor is a coward for just accepting the problem as a tradition and not addressing the problem sooner.

First off: You are not selling her off. She is getting married. Thats not very pleasant and depending on the king could end up kinda iffy or horrific. But your not killing her or selling her to slavery. And its been that way for generations in the setting.

Also its not that easy to yell "Change the traditions!". That could have backfired in many ways. Sure in the movie it turned out that way because it was poorly written but thats my point.

Also Im not saying that now-days this is fine. But im talking about the setting.


Clearly her upbringing didn't cover the importance of the arranged marriage.
We mostly see her ignoring her mother so I think its more likely she didn't care.

Clearly, she's also a child and lacks the perspective of an adult, and is rejecting the only adult perspective that is trying to push the responsibility on her. Kind of like a normal teenager.
Thats why I din't root for her. THATS MY PROBLEM WITH THE MOVIE! That Im expected to root for her!


It's still rather odd for people to be whinging about the fact that she's a child in a story oriented towards mostly children, acting like a child.

Don't pull that card now. Im not complaining about that. Im complaining that the movie was set up for us to root for her. Also Don't pull the "Its just for kids" card on Pixar.


I find it amusing how non-parents find her behavior odd, yet most parents I've spoken with simply looked at Merida and just shruged.
Im not saying it was unnusual. Just that I didn't like her and the movies set up.


Like a child who receives an allowance but has no responsibilities? That never ever happens in the real world.
A child that gets a million bucks every week and then screams when her mother demands she does chores.

[QUOTE] Put simply, where did we see in this film where being a peasant was so awful? I'll agree that we saw huge piles of food for the royal family, but I don't recall seeing any scenes of starving peasants. Nor any peasants who didn't look healthily fed. Nor any who were pissed off from lack of food. Everything I saw seemed to indicate that the peasants thought well of their nobility and seemed to be in relatively good shape. You know, like a typical Disney film set in a medieval setting.

The movie would get a solid PG-13/R rating if it did. And if thats how it ends up working then that just makes the movie even worse in my opinion because it relies on old, trodden out cliche tropes.


eally minimizing what Elinor is asking of Merida, and that minimization only gets worse if we actually accept the premise that this is a gritty hard-nosed medieval setting.

Depending on the king it can be fine or horrific.

Elenors husband, we see loves her very much and respects her as well.

It could end up terribly. And Queenship is a hard job (Not as hard or unfair as the backbreaking labor of the fields but its pretty tough). But the MOVIE minimizes the benefits of Queenship in order to push its poorly written plot.

Im not saying that what she was going through was particularly fair. It was not. Many decisions where made of her life the second she was born. But she was also born of great privilege.

She is simply a despicable person on her own.

This whole thing reminds me of a conflict in another movie:

Cars 2 (Not so fast to rush to its defence now huh?)

Mater goes through a similar arc of being an idiot who didn't notice that he was shaming his friend. Then he realizes this. But then its rendered moot and it was Maqeens fault for not accepting mater. And mater is fine as he is and can go onto acting like a idiot for years to come.

Scowling Dragon
2012-07-05, 02:07 PM
Intentional double (Or maybe by the time I write this somebody has already replied) post to separate my main points.

I kinda got lost on the nitty gritty details when I should make my points simpler:

I didn't like this AS A STORY. And as a narrative construction it failed. I should be talking about the broader themes and the story construction (THOSE where the things that made me hate it) and not about the details. Because the world it constructed is as maleable as the writers word. Its pointless to complain about what was written here in terms of logic (Except for a few plot holes) as the main problems in the movie are caused by debatable but logical actions. But those actions fault are not their wrongness/ Correctness but in the tory construction.

For example:

It could have made sense to just have Vader randomly die from a suit malnfuction so Luke does not have to do anything. But that does not make for interesting story.

This was a movie about accepting responsibility. But at the critical moment when the character is supposed to accept the responsibility the necessity of that choice is taken away.

Its similar to how in cop-outs, writers write themselves into a corner so they CREATE an easy third option.

The corner came into the form of arranged marriage. In our time its a horrible thing, so her accepting marriage would have been bittersweet at best.

So they created an easy third option which deflates all the buildup.

The whole scenario was pretty much impossible to write from the start.

Another problem was in poor arc construction. Merida is made too annoying and too bratty (in my opinion) from the start. Even before the arranged marriage. And giving her bow-superpowers and having her defeat people twice her size just made it worse.

And only in the last five minutes of the movie does she begin to act like she cares.

A more balanced arc would have her be more understanding and conflicted, yet at times more aggressive. Have her do what she does and INSTANTLY be horrified at her actions (Or maybe very conflicted). But the way its constructed in the movie by the time she begins to feel bad I hated her too much for those last five minutes to have any effect.

PS:
What was up with the Japanese trailer talking about the rules of nature being broken? I want to watch that movie.

Avilan the Grey
2012-07-05, 02:31 PM
First off: You are not selling her off. She is getting married. Thats not very pleasant and depending on the king could end up kinda iffy or horrific. But your not killing her or selling her to slavery. And its been that way for generations in the setting.

The difference is mainly theoretical. Seriously.

Tyndmyr
2012-07-05, 02:39 PM
Key word here.

Meridas a hypocrite. She eats the feasts, rests in her wonderful castle but does not want responsibility and expectation. All she needs to do is get married and she can continue to live in luxury and have fun whilst her peasants die of starvation working out in the fields.

A more accurate comparison is to a guy who wants to get paid but does not want to get a job.

I don't know what movie you were watching, but it wasn't Brave. Brave was a family friendly show, with no peasants dying of starvation or anything of the kind.

Let's break it down, shall we?

Killing someone enslaving you(no matter how shiny the cage to which you are confined)...legit, if you have no better way.

However, the "if you have no better way" obviously does not apply here. The problem is solved in a much less violent fashion.

However, there is no peasantry being mashed under the iron boot of the nobility. That's...not really a thing here at all. And you probably can't reasonably expect that in this sort of a movie.

Scowling Dragon
2012-07-05, 02:41 PM
Check out my double post. I think I explained myself better there.

Karoht
2012-07-05, 02:43 PM
First off: You are not selling her off. She is getting married. Thats not very pleasant and depending on the king could end up kinda iffy or horrific. But your not killing her or selling her to slavery. And its been that way for generations in the setting.Except that it is basically a business transaction. So akin to selling her off.



We mostly see her ignoring her mother so I think its more likely she didn't care.Kind of like children do with their parents and authority figures. Hey look, realism.



Thats why I din't root for her. THATS MY PROBLEM WITH THE MOVIE! That Im expected to root for her!So because she acts like a realistic 12 year old in the situation she's placed in? Okay.



Don't pull that card now. Im not complaining about that. Im complaining that the movie was set up for us to root for her. Also Don't pull the "Its just for kids" card on Pixar.Pixar has done nothing but make films for children. They have not made one film for adults in their entire run. Why shouldn't I pull that card? It looks like a duck, it quacks like a duck.
Or more importantly, it looks like a child in a film oriented for children, it acts like a child in a film oriented for children.



A child that gets a million bucks every week and then screams when her mother demands she does chores....and you're suggesting this doesn't happen?

History is filled with plenty of divine right monarchs who lived in oppulance and then whinged about having political responsibilities and courtly duties. History is FULL of spoiled children given the throne. Most of histories worst leaders fit this bill.
At least this one had the sense to figure that she wasn't ready for it, nor was she likely to ever be ready for it, and tried actively telling her parents this.


Alternate version of Brave.
She gets married, has a terrible marriage, runs the clan/s into the ground, and on her parents deathbed says 'told you so.'



Also its not that easy to yell "Change the traditions!".You mean it takes... wait for it... Brave-ery? Something this child was clearly raised with (her father figure, her pastimes), while her mother was not?

Tyndmyr
2012-07-05, 02:49 PM
Check out my double post. I think I explained myself better there.

I read it. Your arguments are extremely sketchy.

1. The whole scenario is not a gritty "everyone is dying, and starvation runs rampant one". That's not a thing here. Therefore, the solutions involved are also logically going to be less gritty and terrible. Is a heartfelt speech fixing everything a bit overused? Absolutely. But I didn't really expect her to fix it by killing the leaders of the clans and mounting their heads on pikes.

2. In the alternate universe version of Brave, where everything is realistic and terrible, then yes, a forced marriage against your will IS a serious violation of your rights as a human, and is a form of slavery. Someone being sold into slavery is in the right in attempting to avoid it as best as they can, even if this means hurting or killing the slavers.

Scowling Dragon
2012-07-05, 03:07 PM
Those where not my arguments.

I meant that the movie was poorly put together in terms of narrative, and was confused what its theme was.

I also said that it was a bad idea to make a movie on this subject that is targeted at both a young audience AND an adult one (garnered by pixars reputation)

Tyndmyr
2012-07-05, 03:11 PM
Those where not my arguments.

I meant that the movie was poorly put together in terms of narrative, and was confused what its theme was.

I also said that it was a bad idea to make a movie on this subject that is targeted at both a young audience AND an adult one (garnered by pixars reputation)

The theme was pretty obviously a girl learning maturity, while a mom learned about communication, with a strong theme of "family bonds matter". I didn't think the theme was at all confused, and the narrative supported the theme fairly well, even if some of the details could have been improved.

I think it was a fairly normal Pixar movie. Definitely aimed at kids, but plenty for the adults too.

Avilan the Grey
2012-07-05, 03:12 PM
Those where not my arguments.

I meant that the movie was poorly put together in terms of narrative, and was confused what its theme was.

I also said that it was a bad idea to make a movie on this subject that is targeted at both a young audience AND an adult one (garnered by pixars reputation)

It DOES seem that you are overly projecting something on the movie, though. And it seems like a great idea to me (to make a movie about this topic).

Scowling Dragon
2012-07-05, 03:34 PM
It DOES seem that you are overly projecting something on the movie, though. And it seems like a great idea to me (to make a movie about this topic).

On the nececities of arranged marriage?

Or how they can be stoped with sappy speaches?

I will make a longer rebutal later. Currently on iphone.

SoC175
2012-07-05, 03:43 PM
She is a hypocrite as she prances through her fancy castle (Safe from storms that other stuff that peasants die of pneumonia from), eating the feasts that her lowly peasants made for her (That would never get to eat in their entire lives) because of her princess status. But responsibilities and expectations are hawd and unfaiw.Exactly my issue with her

Karoht
2012-07-05, 03:45 PM
I will make a longer rebutal later. Currently on iphone.I'll save you 5 minutes.


On the nececities of arranged marriage?
At no point was it a 'necessity' due to the fact that there are other ways of solving problems. Historical preceedant of an abusive and barbaric tradition does not in any way justify its existance, then or now, nor is it justified in the context of the film for numerous reasons already mentioned by other posters in this thread.

If you wish to argue that it was a necessity, by all means show me a historical situation where arranged marriage was the solution used, and prove that there was literally no other possible solution.

Best put that iPhone of yours to work on that.



Or how they can be stopped with sappy speaches?Sounded more like common sense. These people were willing to go to war because Merida wouldn't marry? When they had forged their friendship in something much deeper than just politics? Call it a sappy speach if you must, I call it her telling the grown-ups to act like grown-ups for 5 minutes. But she did it in the manner that a queen should, not by behaving like an angry 12 year old, thus demonstrating her maturity and the grown-ups temporary lapse of maturity.

Starbuck_II
2012-07-05, 03:49 PM
The theme was pretty obviously a girl learning maturity, while a mom learned about communication, with a strong theme of "family bonds matter". I didn't think the theme was at all confused, and the narrative supported the theme fairly well, even if some of the details could have been improved.

I think it was a fairly normal Pixar movie. Definitely aimed at kids, but plenty for the adults too.

Yes, and I perfered the solution.
Compromise.

She still gets sold off, but they attempt to woo her. Better than marrying someone before getting to know someone.

Avilan the Grey
2012-07-06, 01:57 AM
On the nececities of arranged marriage?

Or how they can be stoped with sappy speaches?

I will make a longer rebutal later. Currently on iphone.

Not to offend, but I doubt you will cause anything more than to rotate the merry-go-around another lap.
I don't agree with your theories or your conclusions; it is as simple as that. :smallsmile:

Scowling Dragon
2012-07-06, 01:25 PM
Yeah....I should stop. Nobody agrees with me and no argument, is going to change that.

Karoht
2012-07-06, 02:39 PM
Yeah....I should stop. Nobody agrees with me and no argument, is going to change that.
Thats just how differences of opinion go. It's no big deal.


Remember Sully's hair back in Monsters Inc? I found out the other day that it was very very difficult to animate, and it took forever for it to render.
Remember the part of Brave where she climbs up the cliff, and you see the spray coming off the waterfall? I wonder if that little 10 second scene would have been an equal pain in the bottom, or worse, given the technology back then, rather than the technology we have now.

I'm actually okay with the semi-real/semi-cartoony humanoid characters that Pixar does. It's an art style I rather like, and we don't seem to get any uncanny valley moments.

Jayngfet
2012-07-06, 07:25 PM
Thats just how differences of opinion go. It's no big deal.


Remember Sully's hair back in Monsters Inc? I found out the other day that it was very very difficult to animate, and it took forever for it to render.
Remember the part of Brave where she climbs up the cliff, and you see the spray coming off the waterfall? I wonder if that little 10 second scene would have been an equal pain in the bottom, or worse, given the technology back then, rather than the technology we have now.

I'm actually okay with the semi-real/semi-cartoony humanoid characters that Pixar does. It's an art style I rather like, and we don't seem to get any uncanny valley moments.

Meridia's hair was DEFINITELY a huge thing to deal with. Remember this is a film they had to work on for YEARS and is still short compared to many others. Hair and fabric are two things a lot of animated projects don't even pretend to do well, and Meridia always has both of them out on display.

It's not as bad a situation as say, video games, and the technology pixar uses has certainly advanced in the years since, but hair of the quantity and specification Meridia's got was almost certainly the most difficult thing to work with in the film.

Lord Seth
2012-07-06, 10:57 PM
Yeah....I should stop. Nobody agrees with me and no argument, is going to change that.Aw, I was looking forward to your longer rebuttal. :( I thought you were actually making some decent points.

Jayngfet
2012-07-07, 01:39 AM
Aw, I was looking forward to your longer rebuttal. :( I thought you were actually making some decent points.

While I normally encourage discussion, this is a thread where it's been stated that nobody is going to budge an inch and anyone who's going to switch sides already has at least once. Further discussion would simply cause more arguments that are turning increasingly less civil. It'd be best to either stop the discussion or change to another aspect of the movie because at the rate things are going this'll probably get ugly VERY quickly.

VanBuren
2012-07-07, 02:13 AM
While I normally encourage discussion, this is a thread where it's been stated that nobody is going to budge an inch and anyone who's going to switch sides already has at least once. Further discussion would simply cause more arguments that are turning increasingly less civil. It'd be best to either stop the discussion or change to another aspect of the movie because at the rate things are going this'll probably get ugly VERY quickly.

That, and the arguments being made are beginning to repeat themselves. There's really nowhere to go from here.

The Glyphstone
2012-07-07, 08:27 AM
There's always PMs to continue non-public discussion, if LordSeth and ScowlingDragon want to keep debating or discussing the issue, but I think I'd agree that the main line of argument has played out.

BlackDragonKing
2012-07-08, 12:32 PM
While by no means bad, I was kind of disappointed with Brave. It is, I feel, their most beautiful movie so far, quite possibly the most beautiful animated movie I've ever seen in my life. But...it felt light to me, like it was a movie solely aimed at a younger audience compared to some of their previous movies, much like Cars. Compare that to Up and Wall-E, which I both feel are actually more powerful movies as viewed by adults than by kids, and I didn't think that Brave was one of Pixar's gold-standard pieces. I'm not prophesying the downfall of the group, but I do wish I'd liked this story more than I did. I managed to guess the story would be

"Merida rebels against the unpleasant prospect of an arranged marriage with one of three dunderheads, and tries to use magic to change her fate to get out of it. In the process, she turns her family into bears and has to fix what she broke, growing up as a person in the process"

just from watching one or two of the trailers, but I'd also expected the movie to surprise and challenge me beyond that. It...didn't, which I found a little disappointing. It was a good fairy tale, but I thought it wasn't as ambitious a story as some of the others, and that keeps me from liking it as much as Up or The Incredibles.

This thread's gone over the relationship central to the plot to death, so I'm going to go an alternative track with something I thought ought to have been different in hopes of stirring up some new and interesting discussion.

Am I the only one that thought Brave would have been a better movie if it had an antagonist?

Yes, people will point out that Mor'du is right there if you're looking for an evil thing Merida and Elinor must defeat at the climax, but I put it to you that Mor'du is not an antagonist; really, he's barely even a character. Would the ending have been any different if the story was purely allegorical and Mor'du was just a random dire bear that happened along at bad times? I don't think it would.

I think the story would have been much more interesting if it had gone for a real antagonist, whether something alongside Mor'du or just doing more with the demon bear himself. This could go a couple ways, one of the most obvious being replacing the odd but harmless witch who really just enabled other people's selfishness with something different, like Merida being led to one of the Fair Folk when she's looking to change her fate. It could be an actively malevolent entity that changes her fate for the worse to amuse itself or advance some goal, or an entity that is neither benevolent nor malevolent, and forces Merida to confront that you can only cause suffering taking shortcuts in finding your own path more directly than the witch does.

Or what if they'd done more with Mor'du? They might have made him less of a random encounter if he wasn't just a mindless beast stronger than the average bear. They could have played him as something ravaging the land because he's still raging against the fate his selfishness brought on him, in which case Merida has to confront something that is not so different from what she might have done without the development she's been forced into by being responsible for her mother's plight, or they might have played Mor'du as a tragic antagonist that saw the harm his pride had caused the way Merida did, but when it was too late to make amends. He's become a creature eaten up by savagery because the human left in him didn't understand what his life and family had meant to him until both were beyond his reach, and rather than slaying the Demon Bear, Merida has to redeem him from his curse along with her family, showing she's become a courageous and worthy individual through her compassion and willingness to be responsible for others as well as herself instead of through fighting against something beyond her power.

Those are just some things that occurred to me. I'm curious what your opinions are. Do you think as I do, that Brave would have been better with more of a "real" antagonist, or do you think that would have detracted from it?

Scowling Dragon
2012-07-08, 12:46 PM
I think an antagonist would have taken away from Meridas faults more.

So she doesn't have to overcome herself, but just some generic baddie.