The title is Brave but perhaps it ought to have been Proud. It is ultimately pride, not bravery, that lies at the heart of the latest Disney Pixar film. Scottish Princess Merida (voiced by Kelly MacDonald), a headstrong tomboy, has reached marrying age. Per tradition, the three other clans all submit their candidates for her hand. Tensions flare between Merida and her mother, Queen Elinor (Emma Thompson), precipitating the young woman to run out into the forest to blow off some steam. There is where things take an unexpected turn. Merida encounters a witch, who sells her a potion to “change” her mother.
Tangled, a retelling of the Rapunzel fairy tale from Walt Disney Animation Studios, did quite well for itself this past holiday season. A hit with both critics and audiences alike, it did well at the box office (earning nearly $200 million domestically, and – in its second weekend of release – dethroning Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 as box office champ). It did quite well in disc sales, too, raking in over $80 million in its first week of release. It’s ranked in the Top 20 for 2010 on Flickchart, with a healthy 58% win percentage, appearing in 48 users’ individual Top 20 lists. It’s quite charming, hearkening back to the glory days of Disney princesses, and I found it to be thoroughly entertaining.
But am I the only one who has a problem with this?
There’s been a little controversy over some particular flicks popping up on Flickchart for ranking. Some users seem to figure that Flickchart is a bit too liberal in the material it approves for ranking. WWE wrestling specials? Pixar animated shorts? Television pilot episodes? Looney Tunes? Captain EO?
Well, it all started there, didn’t it? Captain EO is a “4-D” film that debuted in Walt Disney theme parks in 1986 and ran there exclusively through the ’90s. The 17-minute sci-fi film (at the time, the most expensive movie ever made on a per-minute basis) starred Michael Jackson, and was essentially a giant music video with 3-D imagery, flashing lights and plenty of smoke. Following Jackson’s death, the film made a return to Disney parks in 2010, but it has never had a theatrical release.