I’ve been seeing mixed reviews about Brave. Some people loved it, some didn’t like the story and others that it was just too dark. My four year old usually can’t deal with scary parts, but Brave was mostly okay for him, thank goodness! And I enjoyed the movie, even though there were parts of the magic I felt were never explained.
However, the movie is making press because this is the first “Princess” that didn’t have (or want) a prince. That was kind of the pitch for the movie; however, I have mixed feelings about that aspect. The main thing I felt was that she was just too young to be interested in boys. Historically she would have been pretty young at this time, when they were only considering betrothal and not even an actual wedding. And regardless of her actual age, she acts very young. Too immature for a lasting love affair, that’s for sure. So I never felt like this was the story of a woman who doesn’t need a man, or who is strong without a man, but more of a story about a young girl who will eventually find a prince someday. Nothing wrong with that, just not exactly “empowering” or anything.
But then I suppose that part of my ambivalence comes from the fact that I think trust and love require a lot of strength. Due to that, I didn’t look up to her for her independence. That was her natural state, to be a willful, stubborn girl, and she was willing to do it at the expense of her family and entire kingdom without thinking twice. It was an interesting, entertaining story, but not an example I want my children to follow. It would have been more difficult for her to actually put her faith in the people she loved… which is something she never did.
I also recently watched Tangled, which I must say I enjoyed more. I felt like she was a stronger (and more mature) heroine. That heroine also seemed much older, like a high school senior to Brave’s middle school angst.
You tell me. Did you see one or both of these? What did you think about the lack of a prince charming in Brave? How much do you think her age factored into her lack of interest in boys or marriage?