11 Reasons 'Brave' Is Worth Watching Over & Over Again
As a Disney/Pixar enthusiast, I jumped for joy in 2012 when I learned the production company was about to release its first film featuring a female protagonist. After all, Merida is a groundbreaking feminist heroine and an amazing role model for audiences of all ages — however, that's not the only reason I'll never tire of watching Brave over and over again. Brave is full of hilarious characters (from Merida's mischievous triplet brothers to The Witch who is seriously bad at her job) and its premise leaves room for plenty of fun action sequences. When Merida is told by her mother that it's time for an arranged marriage, she seeks out a spell that will "change" her mother — only it backfires in a major way and Queen Elinor is turned into a bear. It's not exactly what Merida had in mind, and she has to race against the clock to reverse the spell. While most Disney movies leave princesses out of the action sequences altogether, Brave puts Merida front and center where she belongs.
Plus, the movie focuses on the evolution of a mother-daughter relationship, which also sets it apart from other films in the princess genre — and it concludes in a way that will never not make me cry. (#SorryNotSorry)
I will never tire of Brave for the following reasons:
1. Merida Is Hands-Down The Best Princess Ever
Sure, Merida makes a few mistakes throughout the film (like, you know, accidentally turning her mom into a bear), but this independent, arrow-wielding, decidedly non-conformist princess is a breath of fresh air in the genre.
2. This Grand Entrance
No one makes a royal entrance like Merida.
3. The Triplets
Merida may be the star of Brave, but her mischievous triplet brothers couldn't possibly be more adorable or hilarious. (She accidentally turns them into bears, too, but don't worry — it all turns out OK in the end.)
4. Merida Doesn't Always Need Words To Express Herself
I make this facial expression at least once a day.
5. She Has The Best Response Ever To The Idea Of An Arranged Marriage
When Queen Elinor assembles a number of potential suitors for her daughter, Merida is not having it, and declares that she'll be shooting for her own hand. You tell 'em!
6. The Scenery Is Breathtaking
Is anyone else suddenly dying to book a trip to Scotland?
7. The Soundtrack
Brave is full of catchy tunes that capture the mood of each scene perfectly.
8. The Witch
Sure, The Witch does a major disservice to Merida when she fails to properly explain the details of the spell that ultimately turns Elinor into a bear. Then, to add insult to injury, she peaces out to the Wicker Man Festival in Stornoway and is nowhere to be found when Merida needs help reversing it. But, maybe it's for the best — she leaves a cryptic clue ("Fate be changed, look inside, mend the bond torn by pride") and her absence means that Merida needs to save the day on her own.
9. The Mother-Daughter Relationship
Brave breaks the Disney mold by focusing on a complicated mother-daughter relationship, something most young women can relate to. And, instead of ending with Merida riding off into the sunset with a dashing guy who also loves archery, the final scenes focus on the joy she's found by finally bonding with her mom.
10. This Scene Will Never Not Make Me Cry
Fact: I've seen Brave approximately 50 times. Fact: This scene has made me cry every single time.
11. Its Message Applies To Everyone
Brave's main theme is empowerment and taking our fate into our own hands. It may technically be a kids' movie (although, as a Disney enthusiast, I scoff at the notion these movies are just for children), but Merida leaves all viewers with these inspirational parting words: "There are those who say fate is something beyond our command. That destiny is not our own, but I know better. Our fate lives within us, you only have to be brave enough to see it."
Images: Pixar Animation Studios (2); Giphy (8)