Is Pixar slipping?
I didn’t ever want to see Cars 2 (and from what I’ve been hearing, that was a good call) but when I saw the trailers for this, I was onboard. A Pixar film with a female lead set in Scotland? Granted, at first glance, it just looked like a Scottish Mulan but I was still interested. After the credits started rolling, I immediately couldn’t put my finger on what was wrong with the movie (except for the songs which were laughable). A few days later, I realized I was disappointed at how average the movie was.
The animation and voice work (led by Kelly Macdonald as our heroine Merida) was stellar as is expected for a Pixar feature. The story and plot were just okay. First of all, kudos to the marketing department. I had no idea what was going to happen in the movie. You won’t realize how little you know about the plot from the trailers and commercials until the main plot point happens (I’m not going to spoil it). However, once I got over the shock that I’m being surprised about a movie in 2012, it seemed like a regular Disney movie we’ve seen a million times. You pretty much know how it’s going to play out.
I think if this was just a regular Disney Studio picture, I would have been okay with and expected a pretty pedestrian story. But I’ve come to expect more high concept fare from Pixar. I know every movie can’t be Up or Wall-E but I expect more than Brother Bear.