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Disney In Depth: Can Pixar Regain Its Glory?
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Brett Nachman   |  @   |  
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For 15 years, one computer-animation studio dominated Hollywood with 11 major hit films, earning awards a plenty and worldwide critical acclaim for its output. Then came Cars 2. And Brave. Lest we forget Monsters University (which I actually found entertaining) and an entire year (2014) with no feature films. Pixar was a powerhouse, but now its corporate owner (Disney) has an unbeatable animation studio of its own. The question we all continue to wonder is if Pixar can reclaim its title as an unstoppable force.

Disney In Depth previews the recent past and future of Pixar, hoping to determine if John Lasseter‘s computer-animation studio can finally be able to dismiss naysayers, once and for all, that its hit streak was a one-time experience.

...continue reading »
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Why Disney’s Princess Makeover Of Merida From ‘Brave’ Sends The Wrong Message
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The Geeks of Doom   |  @   |  
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By Amy Vernon

Disney Pixar Meridia Makeover

Look, I’m no fan of the whole “Disney Princess” canon. I’m not even sure most of them are actually princesses, but that’s really splitting hairs.

I usually don’t give it much thought, though, except to betray my feminist leanings and be glad I have boys and don’t have to deal with shelves of pink when we go to the toy store (let’s face it, I’d still be shopping in the toy car and superhero section even if I had girls).

But when news broke the other week that Disney was adding Merida from Brave to its princess collection, I was a bit taken aback at the image I saw.

Gone was the frizzy hair. The dress they put her in was the shiny, princess-y one she hated in the movie, not her preferred garb. Her eyes were rounder and had a certain come-hither look to them. Suddenly, her waist was Barbie-sized and she had breasts.

Gosh, I guess she grew up fast.

...continue reading »
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Disney In Depth: Analyzing Disney’s Oscar Wins, Nods, and Snubs
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Brett Nachman   |  @   |  
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The 85th annual Academy Awards had its share of unexpected moments and sequences – I’m sure Jennifer Lawrence did not expect to stumble as she walked up the stairs – but for many who appreciate everything Disney, surely it were the wins, losses and outright snubs that may have caused the most surprises.

This edition of Disney In Depth explores what Disney movies should have won, what should have been nominated, and what wins didn’t surprise whatsoever.

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Disney In Depth: Blu-ray Review: Brave
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Brett Nachman   |  @   |  
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"Brave" Blu-ray cover

Brave
Directed by Mark Andrews, Brenda Chapman
Starring Kelly Macdonald, Emma Thompson, Billy Connolly, Julie Walters, Kevin McKidd, Craig Ferguson, Robbie Coltrane
Walt Disney Home Entertainment
5-Disc Blu-ray | 3-Disc Blu-ray | DVD
Release Date: November 13, 2012

The number 13. It is a bad one, often fraught with misfortune. Sadly that misfortune applies to Pixar’s unlucky 13th feature, Brave, a bold, well-intentioned and genuinely good film with many elements that regretfully do not work in its favor. Fortuitously, though, its Blu-ray release is among the best you can find this holiday season. So bear with me and embark on a Blu-ray review of Brave.

Film

After an intense prologue set in medieval Scotland, where it looks like King Fergus (voiced with gusto by Billy Connolly) will be slain by demon bear Mor’du, we think the film will strike a consistently dark tone. In one sense, yes, Brave heads down an intense path with some accomplished guidance. Yet it also wanders around a trail scattered by silliness and irrelevance. That is perhaps the most consistent issue with Brave, in that it holds a conflicting narrative, never knowing if it wants to be a forceful or relaxed picture.

...continue reading »
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‘Brave’ Also Gets A Limited One Week Theatrical Re-release
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eelyajekiM   |  @   |  
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Brave Header

Yesterday, Disney and Marvel Studios announced that it would re-release Joss Whedon’s The Avengers for a limited one week theatrical run in 1,700 theaters across the country. Now Disney will be re-releasing another summer blockbuster. According to The LA Times, Disney and Pixar will be re-releasing Brave for a limited theatrical run in the same number of theaters as The Avengers re-release.

This is to capitalize on a relatively slow Labor Day weekend. Yes, there are movies like Lawless and The Possession opening in theaters, but Disney is hoping that it could boost some box office numbers with these re-releases, which makes a lot of sense.

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$2 eBook Deal: The Invincible Iron Man: An Origin Story
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Empress Eve   |  @   |  
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The Invincible Iron Man: An Origin Story

The Kindle Edition of the children’s book The Invincible Iron Man: An Origin Story is on sale for only $1.99 (that’s 78% off the regular price of $8.99).

This is a 49-page picturebook, written by Rich Thomas with illustrations by Craig Rousseau, which tells the original of the Marvel superhero Iron Man on a level perfect for the really little ones in your life.

There’s a total of nine children’s books featuring popular TV and film characters are as low as $0.99 each for the Kindle, so be sure to check out main sale page to see all the titles on sale today only, like Brave and Cinderella: The Lost Tiara (Disney Princess Chapter Books).

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$3 MP3 Album Deal: Disney’s ‘Brave’ Soundtrack
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Empress Eve   |  @   |  
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Disney's Brave Soundtrack

The MP3 album deal of the day over at Amazon today is the soundtrack to Disney’s Brave for only $2.99.

This soundtrack album to Disney/Pixar’s latest animated feature Brave contains 20 tracks by composer Patrick Doyle, with two songs singer Julie Fowlis and one performed by Birdy.

If you’d like a physical copy of the Brave soundtrack, the CD is available for only $11.88.

...continue reading »
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Disney In Depth: 5 Funny Disney-Themed Spoofs and Parodies On YouTube
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Brett Nachman   |  @   |  
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One man’s dabbling in filmmaking is another man’s treasure. We live in such a privileged age, where we can exchange information almost as quickly as we can create ideas in our head. Could you imagine a world without YouTube? It is hard to believe that nearly a decade ago that this was far from reality. Luckily for us, we can surf the web for funny videos, everything from piano-playing cats to giggling babies. Many can agree on one common search as entirely entertaining: the ever-popular Disney spoof or parody. Whether the creators are teenagers or professionals, almost everyone offers an ounce of creativity in poking fun at the fantastic world of the Mouse.

In this edition of Disney In Depth, a new recurring feature on the column, check out some of the latest and funniest Disney-themed web videos.

...continue reading »
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Disney In Depth: The State of the Disney Animated Short Film
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Brett Nachman   |  @   |  
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For decades the Disney animated short films, starring the classic gang of Mickey and friends, dominated the screens with innocence and cheer. But that era is not one forgotten. Merely it exists in the past tense, just like the blockbuster musicals that made Disney, Disney. Nevertheless, Walt Disney Animation Studios is experiencing a period of re-growth, what some would argue could be the “third renaissance.” Tangled and the forthcoming Wreck-It Ralph are believed to represent that new beginning. In any case, the art of the short film within the studio is also undergoing a fantastic period of re-interest and ingenuity.

For much of the last decade, when Disney animation was arguably struggling in producing quality features, both in their theatrical and direct-to-video releases, developing short films was placed on the back-burner. Perhaps not intentionally, but they were relegated to little-seen pictures, film festivals, and bonus features on DVDs. The Annie Award-winning short Lorenzo, a charming little tale about a cat’s tail that takes over its life, is utterly creative. But where was this long-delayed piece played to audiences? Try the 2004 Kate Hudson romantic comedy Raising Helen, which underwhelmed at the box office. How was it decided that a short like this be paired with a PG-13 comedy starring Goldie Hawn’s daughter? Though each of these films is adorable in its own right, one must wonder why these were paired together.

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Photos: Pixar’s ‘Brave’ Easter Eggs Revealed
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eelyajekiM   |  @   |  
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Brave Header

A common motif for Pixar is to put a couple of Easter Eggs that hark back to previous films and at least one that hints at next one. Brave is no different. But since it is set in medieval Scotland it was a bit hard to find the right moments to put these Easter Eggs in. Well, if you couldn’t find all of them — and yes there is more than one — we have the images right here. Continue below to check them out.

Of course spoilers will follow, so if you haven’t watched Brave yet, I suggest you turn back now. We also have a review of the film which you can check out.

...continue reading »
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