Sunday, July 22, 2012

Phil sees BRAVE in 3D at the Camera 7 Pruneyard-July 20, 2012

Hello there folks! Yup, I'm still at the Camera 7 in the Pruneyad Campbell. Now last year I saw Pixar's CARS 2 in 3D at the same theater, and I thought it was one of the studio's weakest film. Fast forward to tonight I'm seeing their newest animated film BRAVE in 3D. While overall it was a fun film, I felt it wasn't epic enough.

Before the film. there was a new Pixar short entitled LA LUNA, about three generations of men (grandfather, father, and son) who row out into the ocean, pull out an extremely tall later that reaches the moon so they can sweep its surface, thus creating a crescent moon. It was cute, sweet, and funny. Great little film to watch!

The premise of BRAVE centers around a spunky and fiercely independent red-haired princess named Merida (voiced by Kelly Macdonald), who along with here royal parents King Fergus and Queen Elinor (voiced by Billy Connolly and Emma Thompson respectively) rule the mystical Scottish Highlands. When her parents arrange a tournament to find a suitor for Merida, she rebels against her mother's wishes and runs away into the forest. There she stumbles upon a cabin where a witch (voiced by Julie Walters) gives her a potion that will forever change her destiny. But when Merida discovers that the potion has affected a member of her family, she must do whatever she can to correct her mistake. However can she make amends before the spell becomes permanent?

Since this is a Pixar film, you know that the computer animation is going to be amazing. Well, in the case of BRAVE, it is spectacular! The roaming Scottish countryside, the mystic mist that hangs in the forest, The leaves on the trees, the mane on the head of a horse, this is the studio's best looking film! Very realistic looking; half the time I forgot I was watching an animated movie!

The actors and actresses do a great job voicing these characters: Macdonald's Merida is strong, brave, ans well as hot headed, naive, and oblivious to the teachings of her mother. And speaking of mothers, Thompson's Queen Elinor is wise, proper, caring, and loving with a dash of stubbornness. Connolly as King Fergus provides many of the laughs in the film, which let's face it, who is more qualified in being the comedy relief of the film? All do a fabulous job!

Now the story: it was good, but it wasn't great. Actually it was too small, in scale to being an epic adventure. The film's story felt too contained, and it didn't feel like it was on par with the other Pixar films. In UP, there is a grand global journey that was both physical and emotional. With WALL-E, it is a galactic adventure of returning home to your roots. With TOY STORY 3, it's returning back to Andy's room from Sunshine Day Care, but also the journey of growing up and moving on as well as change. While the film's story was solid, it wasn't epic enough for me.

On a side not, the 3D effects were very well done. And it works in this film, which is really rare nowadays. So I would recommended it seeing in 3D.

While BRAVE falls short in its definition of being an "epic" event, the film is still very entertaining and a joy for the whole family! Defiantely worth checking out! Four out of five stars!

BRAVE is now playing in 2-D and 3-D in theaters nationwide, including at the Camera Cinemas here in Bay Area. To view showtimes, visit their website at

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the show!

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