Have you seen Brave?  If you haven’t, you should!  The Pixar film has taken the typical princess and redefined her for the 21st century. 

Brave is the story of Merida, a Scottish princess with wild hair and a tomboy attitude.  She rides a horse, climbs giant cliffs to sip from enchanted waterfalls, wields a sword, and never misses her mark when she shoots her arrows.  She faces danger without hesitation and is willing to fight for what she believes in, even if that means going against the traditions of her kingdom in order to decide her own fate.

The movie depicts Merida’s struggle to make her mother understand that she wants to make her own decisions in life – something I think most of us can relate to.  When asked to choose a suitor to marry, she bravely announces that she’ll be fighting for her own hand.  Her mother, Queen Elinor, can’t understand why Merida doesn’t want to follow tradition.  It’s clear that Merida loves her mother, but she doesn’t know how to express that she feels trapped by the life that is planned out for her.  Merida is desperate for her mother to accept her for who she is. This leads to a decision by Merida that puts her mother’s life and her own in jeopardy.  Throughout the movie, we see both Merida and Queen Elinor use their physical strength and quick thinking to overcome obstacles and save each other’s lives.

Brave challenges us to change the way we think about girls.  The movie showed strong female characters that didn’t look or act like the typical princesses we’ve come to expect.  They gave us a princess with an adventurous spirit and a sense of self worth that every girl should grow up with, something that was long overdue.

I do my best to set an example for my two boys.  To show them every day that women can be strong.  It’s nice to know that Disney has my back now, too!  I took them to see Brave, and they loved it ~ but I have to admit, I think I loved it just a little bit more!