The Disney Princesses have entered a new phase with their latest peer Merida from the Disney/Pixar film Brave. Watching the movie, you cannot help but wonder if this fiery redhead is the new face of the iconic princesses. What a change, but what a good change.
With Merida (voiced by Boardwalk Empire's Kelly MacDonald), gone are the princesses who wait around for prince charming to come and create a happily ever after. In fact, the Brave heroine actually does not even see her happily ever after being with a husband. While Tangled's princess, Rapunzel, went a bit toward this idea, there was still a clear male that she relied on. Not so in this latest film from the Disney princesses.
Throughout the film, Merida's mother, Queen Elinor (voiced by Emma Thompson), tries to teach the young girl how to be a princess who will soon be betrothed to one of the firstborn heirs of the four Scottish clans. They competed in archery, and shockingly Merida earned the right to her own hand in marriage. Her mother was not happy, and the clans threatened war.
From there, the movie continued on to tell the story of a Brave princess who was able to determine her own fate. It is a striking departure for the princesses, but it was a necessary one. It is wonderful for girls to have such a different fairy tale to imagine. How great that they now have this red-headed archer who wanted her own life. Can you just see all the Princess Merida Halloween costumes this year? Do you think the little girls in your life will be interested in dressing up like this strong Disney princess?
This movie will likely be the yardstick by which all future Disney princesses are measured. Do you think they can keep putting out films that keep up with Merida and her strong independence? If you haven't seen the movie, it is certainly worth taking your daughters and your sons to watch. The animation is wonderful, and the story is empowering.