June 28, 2012


So.  For those of you who are new here and might not know this - my kid broke her leg last year.  It was awful.  But throughout the whole ordeal we told her to be BRAVE.  That she was a strong and BRAVE kid and that therefore she could handle anything.  Then when we heard about Disney/Pixar's upcoming movie we lost our minds:

A redhead who has to be BRAVE?  Um.  That's our kid!!!!
Holy crap.  That's our kid.  Seriously.  Even her name is almost the same.
And she was going to be just over 3 when it came out!  Perfect age for her first ever theater movie! So basically we've been looking forward to and crazy excited about this film for over a year.

When they rolled out the merchandise my kid about lost her mind.  She thought the BRAVE curly redhead wigs were about the funniest things ever.  And she refused to take off the Merida dress my mom gave her:

Sunset at Lakewood Park

But then as we got closer I started to get worried.  The reviews were kindof meh (although if you're going to read one read this one by Slate).  And it plays into the whole fiery-redhead trope that I despise (Making personality assumptions based on the color of someone's hair is NO DIFFERENT than making assumptions based on the color of their skin.  Stop it.) And I'd been warned several times about some scary parts with a bear:

And this is, unfortunately, another princess movie.  And we've FINALLY been moving away from the whole Disney princess thing.  Finally.  And Peggy Orenstein's rundown of Pixar's female problem had me super concerned (btw I HIGHLY recommend her book "Cinderella Ate My Daughter" Amazing material - especially if your kid is going through a princess phase and it's making your head explode)

And can anything you've been looking forward to for that long live up to your expectations?

So it was with a little bit of hesitation that we took her on Saturday.  She was SO EXCITED.  She wanted me to use the curly spray in her hair so it would be extra curly:

And of course she wore her Merida dress:

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Complete with sparkly shoes, tights, and a fabulous bag.

 We ended up leaving for the theater earlier than we had planned because all she wanted to do was go, go, go.

Guess what day it is!  #brave #merida #disney

We got there before they even opened the doors:


We weren't the only ones there early.  And the other kids waiting thought she WAS Merida!  It was pretty crazy.  We went to get popcorn at one point and the entire lobby of the movie theater was basically staring at my kid.  The little girls in front of us had a whole discussion trying to work up the courage to wave at her.  It was insane.

I wore a dress because I had a feeling she would be getting some attention.  You don't want to look like a mess when everyone is staring at you.
She got pretty shy with all of that going on and buried her head in my leg.  So we just hung out in our seats after that.  She didn't actually eat any of the popcorn.  I blame myself for that one - I made her put napkins on her lap b/c I didn't want the popcorn to stain her dress.  So she just avoided the popcorn all together to protect the fancy dress.

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When my girl gets into new situations she just gets very, very serious.  So she watched the whole movie with complete attention taking it all in.  Afterward it took her awhile to digest it all.

All braved out.  #brave #merida #disney #

She did eventually tell me that she liked it.  But that there were bears.  But she wasn't afraid she was just shy.  And maybe we can go to see a movie again sometime?

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The movie itself was gorgeous.  The "I don't want to be a princess" storyline was done in a fresh enough way that the plot didn't fall flat.  At all. Merida is a princess I would actually be ok with my girl looking up to.  She is extremely bad-assed and also smart and well-spoken (thanks, it seems to her mom):

Do you have any idea how many times this exact thing happens in my house?

I have to admit I teared up pretty much any time young Merida was on screen:
And the ending destroyed me.  This movie doesn't end with a wedding or with the princess dancing with her prince.  It ends with a mom and her girl riding through the forest together.  Learning to appreciate each other.

Wait.  That's not the screen shot, is it?
Overall YES.  This movie lived up to our ridiculously high expectations.  The whole experience was amazing.  Perfect first theater movie.  Great film.  Great characters.  Go see it.  You won't be disappointed.
First movie. #brave #disney #movie
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