In Pixar’s Oscar-winning animated Scottish fable, we meet Merida (Kelly Macdonald), the flame-haired, tomboy daughter of King Fergus (Billy Connolly) and his queen (Emma Thompson). Mother and daughter don’t get on. The Queen thinks Merida should be married; Merida thinks she shouldn’t. She doesn’t want a husband telling her what to do. But an unsuitable marriage is arranged even so, whereupon the feisty Merida gallops off, finds a wizened old witch (Julie Walters) and begs her to cast a spell to make the queen change her mind. Well, a spell is indeed cast but it’s the wrong one and the effects are, to say the least, alarming. Suddenly, there are bears all over the place and the king has had a prejudice against bears ever since one chewed his leg off. Worse still, Merida has only limited time to reverse the spell and turn things back to normal. This is enchanting stuff, a highly enjoyable family movie with a top-notch vocal cast.
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