Still Brave


I wrote briefly about Pixar’s upcoming movie, Brave, back in July.  But have you seen the trailers?

This is looking pretty good.  It’s certainly piqued my interest… again.

My top movies for 2012, so far, are looking like this:

  1. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey Because duh!  Huge fantasy nerd, here.  Definitely seeing this one in the theaters.
  2. The Dark Knight Rises After the last Batman flick, The Dark Knight, both Dear Wife and I left the theory feeling terrified and unsettled. This is not the normal reaction you’re supposed to get from a superhero movie. But I am fascinated by the dark, uncompromising, and true-to-life vision of Christopher Nolan’s Batman. And I want to see how he brings this saga to an end.
  3. The Hunger Games Dear Wife and I will both enjoy seeing this.  I just recently read the book, and Dear Wife just recently re-read it.
  4. Brave (in a statistical tie for #3) because, well… because Pixar, and because those trailers
  5. The Secret World of Arrietty I’m a pretty big fan of Hayao Miyazaki. I’m predisposed to liking Anime in general, but Miyazaki’s works transcend the genre, and are beautiful and wonderful storytelling. This isn’t a Miyazaki-directed flick, but it’s by his studio (Studio Ghibli), and he’s an Executive Producer, so it’s still got his stamp on it.
  6. Prometheus It looks very rated-R, which is something the denizens of the Casa Chez Watkins typically eschew, so I probably won’t see it.  But it is based on the Alien franchise, of which I partook before the days of my trying not to see too many rated-R flicks, so I am still quite fascinated by it – and it looks to be a much more intriguing and intelligent movie than the last few entries in the Alien series.
  7. The Amazing Spider-Man I’m still miffed they ruined the Sam Raimi/Tobey Maguire franchise, and still think it’s too soon; and yet this looks pretty decent.  I may not catch it in theaters, but I’ll probably still see it eventually.
  8. Is there a number 8?  Lots of spectacle-flicks this year (The Avengers, John Carter), but nothing that really and deeply excites me.  The Avengers looks to rely too much on last year’s Thor which I didn’t see and which just didn’t strike much interest in me compared to other Marvel titles like Captain America (and the Thor-connection in Captain America annoyed me) and Iron Man.  And John Carter… looks very visual-tastic… but something gives me the sense there isn’t very much there there.  Another title that I might put on my list is World War Z; but so far I just haven’t seen enough about it to form an solid opinion.

Anyway, I hope to see my top 4 in theaters (it’s probably already too late for Arrietty).  Any of these on your radar?

15 thoughts on “Still Brave

  1. Definitely a good list, Stephen. I’m with you on Brave, The Hobbit, and The Hunger Games. But World War Z is one I’ve been excited about from the second I heard it was being made into a film. Loved the book (in that horrified-fascination-watching-a-train-wreck-but-can’t-look-away-way), and I enjoy a good zombie flick.

    And re: World War Z: I’m deliberately closeting myself against spoilers/trailers/reviews. Read the book, want to experience the film without any preconceived visuals ruining it.

    Funny, I can’t remember anything in 2011 that I was looking forward to seeing in theatre… saw one (the Twilight film — blech) more as social outing than any true desire to see it…

    • I haven’t read World War Z yet, so I don’t have any strong attachment to it from that angle. I’ll try not to spoil it for you based on the trailer I’ve seen, but I got something of a Contagion vibe from it, except with Zombies instead of Bird Flu. (Recently saw Contagion on Netflix and I enjoyed it. It was a Sci Fi of a different kind, IMO.) But the trailer I saw definitely intrigued me, which is why I mentioned it here. But I want to know more before I commit to the idea. Maybe I should read the book. Given my current reading speed… unlikely I will before the movie arrives. As for 2011: you’re so right. 2011 was a terrible year for SF&F films, I think. I saw the Twilight movie, too, for similar reasons (if you count “date with wife” as “social outing”), and the final “Harry Potter” movie. But I didn’t really see anything else in theaters that I recall… and the only movies I regretted missing in theaters were Super 8 (which I’ve now caught up with on Netflix) and Hugo. 2012 looks like a far better year for SF&F movies, with so many great titles coming.

  2. I agree about the Spider Man movie – still feels WAY too soon. I also hate when franchises reboot themselves immediately after ending.

    Both my husband and I are *definitely* looking forward to Brave and The Hunger Games. DH wants to see World War Z, but we’re both looking forward to The Dark Knight Rises.

    But we’re also really looking forward to The Avengers. The Captain America/Thor connection worked well for us. Thor *was* a slightly weaker link, but as Paul and Storm’s recent song “Thanksgiving” goes, “I am grateful that Joss Whedon is directing the Avengers … and if Avengers ends up sucking, we’ll just shrug”. That being said, I think it has the potential for awesome.

    • My guess? Marvel wants a successful and current Spider-Man franchise so they can do a Spider-Man/Avengers cross-over movie. A “Civil War” storyline, perhaps? Or maybe it’s totally unrelated. As for Avengers… I expect eventually I’ll probably break down and Netflix Thor and then Avengers… but I think it unlikely I’ll see Avengers in the theaters. Between Dear Wife and I, we rarely get out to see more than four or five movies in a year, combined, and Avengers is just too far down the list to be one of the ones that makes it.

      • Fair enough. We’re still childless (for now) so we have a bit more disposable income. And DH is a cinephile.

        It would be interesting if Marvel takes it that far. But I doubt that’s doable because Universal owns the rights to Spider Man, not Marvel. At least, last I heard…

      • Yeah, I wouldn’t call myself a cinephile per se – I don’t see nearly enough movies, generally, to claim that moniker – but I am a lover of good SF&F movies. But Dear Wife and I have a little one, which makes getting out to go see movies a more challenging prospect.

  3. “Hobbit” = SOOOOO seeing. Nothing but death shall stop me!

    “Dark Knight Rises” = plan to see.

    “Hunger Games” = have to see, or a friend will murder me.

    “Spider-Man” = may see. I had some issues with the previous franchise (most glaringly, what the symbiote did they do to Venom?!?!), but I got attached to Tobey as Peter, so it’ll be weird to readjust. Maybe I’ll have my dad rent it when it comes to DVD and we’ll pass judgement
    from the comfort of the living room.

    “Avengers” = same as above, most likely; that’s what we did with “Thor”, which was okay. I enjoyed “Captain America” a lot, so there’s that going for it.

    And as for “Brave”… well, archery like that certainly recommends it. And, as you point out, it is Pixar. So let’s just say I won’t be avoiding it.

    • If I can help it, not even death shall stop me from seeing Hobbit . The other movie-goers will just have to put up with the stinking, rotting, shambling zombie corpse amongst them. Though I suppose if it comes to that, I ought to see World War Z in solidarity. Or maybe boycott? I’m not sure what the appropriate response is if you’re a zombie…

  4. Great list you’ve got up there, Stephen. A movie buff that I am, I do look forward to all of those movies as well.
    I hope you eventually change your mind about the Avengers because I found Thor and Captain America entertaining. Well yeah, it doesn’t hurt that much for me to go brain dead at times (which by the way happens most of the time too :-)) And besides, I’m thrilled to see Hollywood hotties Chris Hemsworth, Jeremy Renner, Chris Evans all in one movie. Not to mention, of course, heavyweights Robert Downey Jr., Scarlett Johansson etc, That’ll be enough to get my movie ticket’s worth, I guess.
    Thanks for sharing your list and the trailers.

    • Hah! I’m afraid I’m not the sort to go see movies for even the peripheral reason of one or another Hollywood Hottie playing a starring role. 😉 Yes, not even if we’re talking about Hotties of the opposite gender. I just don’t form strong attachments to the actors in movies. I form strong attachments to the characters and the story… and I occasionally form strong attachments to the directors and film score composers. So… I’m more likely to see a movie if it’s directed by someone whose work I’ve liked in the past. I rarely see a movie just because it has a favorite actor (even if it’s Harrison Ford or Sean Connery). In many ways, I’m much more of a Film Trailer junkie than I am a movie junkie or cinephile. I love film trailers, and I love studying the art of film trailers, because I can often tell if I’ll enjoy seeing a movie based on the trailers and teasers and the sense of story and character and world they give me. When trailers don’t give me strong story and character, I tend to discount the chances of the movie entertaining me. (Which is why I said what I said about John Carter: the trailers have been high on visuals, but very low on character.) Or Prometheus, as another interesting example: the trailers have been very strong on atmosphere and world (the world being one of the three key things I look for in a trailer), but very low on character. The strong sense of world in those trailers intrigues me. Brave, on the other hand, has a strong sense of world, story, and especially character, and that’s why they catch my attention so powerfully.

  5. Pingback: 2013: Movies of Interest | The Undiscovered Author

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