Saturday, June 30, 2012
About The Movie:
a 2012 American 3D computer-animated fantasy adventure film produced
by Pixar Animation
Studios and distributed by Walt Disney Pictures. It was written by Mark Andrews, Steve Purcell, Brenda Chapman,
and Irene Mecchi, directed by Andrews and Chapman and
co-directed by Purcell. The film's voice cast features Kelly Macdonald, Julie Walters, Billy Connolly, Emma Thompson, Kevin McKidd, Craig Ferguson, Robbie Coltrane,
and John Ratzenberger. To make the most complex
visuals possible, Pixar completely rewrote their animation system for the first
time in 25 years. It
is also the first movie ever to use the Dolby Atmos sound
In Brave, set in the highlands of 10th century Scotland, a skilled archer
named Merida defies an age-old custom, causing chaos in her kingdom. After
consulting a witch for help, her family becomes cursed and Merida is forced to
undo the spell herself before it is too late.
What Is Good About The Movie:
Pixar has an
unparalleled track record when it comes to family entertainment and I HAD TO
SEE THIS MOVIE even thought I skipped out on "Cars 2" last year. At
last, with "Brave," it's the girls' turn to shine and though is not
in the same league as my Pixar favs "Finding Nemo", "Up" and
"The Incredibles" it is still entertaining. Merida fits right in line
with the dynamic damsels we have seen recently in warring "Snow
White" films, "John Carter" and "The Hunger Games."
It's refreshing that she's also foolhardy and no wiser than most teenagers.
Mother-daughter relationships are still at a premium in big-budget
flicks, and "Brave" observes their squabbling with an affectionate,
even-handed familiarity that's nice to see.
I LOVE that Merida's independent streak stiffens to all-out
rebellion when Elinor announces it's time to marry. As tradition demands, the
groom will be the son of a neighboring chieftain, whoever emerges victorious at
the forthcoming games at the gathering of the clans. But Merida has her own
ideas about that, and storms out in search of some means to change her mum's
What Is Bad About The Movie:
The thing about the movie that bothers me the most is that it's as
if Merida has taken a stupid pill, and the plentiful coincidences that follow
are almost as hard to swallow. Pixar likes to boast that it's all about the
story, but this tall tale has some holes that need to be filled. The time scale
feels off, and King Fergus in particular is left dangling for too long. That's
not to say it isn't enjoyable. It's just that I've come to expect more from
this brand. By anyone else's standards, "Brave" stands as a crisp,
lively frolic, brimming with texture and color, but Pixar boasting about their
female protagonist, expected more.
"I'm Coming Out" is a hit single released by Motown singer Diana Ross in 1980,
written and produced by Chic members Bernard
Edwards and Nile Rodgers for her album diana (1980).
In 1979, Ross commissioned Chic founders Nile Rodgers and Bernard
Edwards to create material for a new album, following the
success of her final Ashford & Simpson-composed and
produced LP, The Boss after taking her daughters to see the band
in concert. Rodgers got the idea for "I'm Coming Out" after noticing
three different drag queens dressed as Diana Ross at a New York club
called the GG Barnum Room. The lyrics hold an additional meaning to Ross, as
she was leaving Motown Records and "coming out" from under the thumb
of Berry Gordy.
The song was a hit, peaking at number five on the U.S. Pop Singles chart. It is
also notable for being the first song usually performed at Ross' performances
and concerts since 1980.
Rodgers convinced his neighbor, producer Meco Monardo, to contract
the horns for the album in return for a
commitment by Rodgers to co-produce Monardo's then-upcoming album of music fromThe Empire Strikes Back.
Monardo, a former first-call session player who had a string of hits in the
late 1970s with disco versions
of film music, also played trombone on the album and is featured in a solo towards
the end of "I'm Coming Out":
Nile recorded all the tracks and
vocals and called me and my horn section for a 3-hour date. We had a great
time, as the songs were fabulous—especially "Upside Down" and
"I'm Coming Out". We sounded great—Nile was pleased and as I was
packing up, he asked me to stay and play a jazz trombone solo on one of the
tracks. I said, "Nile, there are a lot of hit records with jazz saxophone
solos—even some with jazz trumpet solos, but not one with a trombone"!! He
said. "That's exactly why I want you to do it"!! I was a little bit
rusty at first as I hadn't had a call to play jazz in years, so we ended up
with four separate tracks of solos, with the intention of picking the best
parts to make one great solo when later he went to mix it. I reminded Nile of
our agreement and he said he was looking forward to 'The Empire Strikes Back'
as he was a Star Wars fan himself.
Trombone solos have been rare on top forty songs in
the post-big band era
and especially so since the 1960s. Notable exceptions include brief solos by James Pankow on
a handful of earlyChicago hits and Clifford Adams' brief solo on Kool &
the Gang's 1983 hit "Joanna". The pitch in Monardo's solo
is unusually indistinct for an instrumentalist of his stature, which he later
explained was due to problems in the final mixing of the track:
Weeks went by when I heard through
the grapevine that Diana Ross was incredibly unhappy with the album. She
thought Nile and Bernard made her sound like Chic. She took the master tapes
from Power Station and went to Motown in Detroit to remix the record. When it
came out, her early interviews were very unenthusiastic about it and Nile and
Bernard, her producers. Well, as we all know, this turned out to be her
biggest-selling solo album ever. "Upside Down" was a monster Number-One
single and "I'm Coming Out" was a top-ten single. It turned out that
when the engineer at Motown saw the track listings of Meco 1-2-3-4, he just
assumed that Track 1 was THE track and never listened to the others, and so
that's what is on the record. So, I'm extremely proud to say that my solo is
the only jazz trombone solo of a top-ten pop hit in the last 50 years! But - it
wasn't my best - that, unfortunately lies in the vaults at Motown.
dispute with Ross led to none of musicians being credited on the album cover
and also may have had a part in Rodgers backing out of his commitment to
Monardo's Meco Plays Music from The Empire Strikes Back album.
However, Rodgers and Ross later mended their professional relationship and
subsequent digital releases of the album credit Monardo and the other
musicians. A 2003 two-disk release of the album included as a bonus track the
Rodgers/Edwards mix originally rejected by Ross.