After a few minutes of Disney Pixar's 'Brave,' I had arrived at the notion that King Fergus was another in a long line of movie or TV dads that simply don't measure up to what a real dad is. As I continued watching, the good king proved to himself to be a great father and man.
My entire family had been waiting impatiently for weeks for the release of Disney Pixar's Brave. A camping trip prevented us from seeing it on opening night, but we were there on Saturday evening, tubs of buttered popcorn and candy in hand.
I'm as big a kid as my children, in some ways, so I didn't need to be dragged to the cinema. In fact, I was at the bottom of the stairs imploring my house full of girls to "Come on! Let's go!" The combination of a new Disney film and one that promised to be uplifting and encouraging for my daughters was just the tonic I needed.
After a few scenes, the bigger-than-life father of Merida, King Fergus, appeared to be turning into a bumbling, warring, overgrown child that we so often see on the screen. After a few moments of thinking my hopes for a movie that touted the virtues of every member of the family were gone, I forced myself to revert back to enjoying the movie and watching my girls being enthralled by it.
I must say that my five-year old was scared by some of the intense scenes, but she seems to be none the worse and enjoyed the movie. Both girls asked to go to Target after the movie and immediately get Merida dolls. I relented.
Good King Fergus
Near mid-way into the movie, Good King Fergus began to redeem himself. Sure, he's no public speaker, not many people are, but he had demonstrated some manly leadership qualities. In the end, I found that he was a loving father and husband, he related to his children, he was respected (mostly) by the clans, he served his people well, and he loved and protected his family. Not much more can be expected from a father or mother. After all, good Queen Elinor possessed those same qualities.
The movie didn't explore whether King Fergus and Queen Elinor were people of faith, but, in all honesty, I would have been shocked if it had. As a Christian, I would've loved to have seen that facet added to their makeup, but I understand why it wasn't.
We don't know much about the triplets, Harris, Hubert and Hamish, but Merida is an independent young lady guided by two loving parents. There's a lot wrapped up in that word, "loving," and from a parent's point of view, this movie provided an example of the sort of loving family we want to see more of.
I'll leave the plot twists and in-depth critiquing to others. Suffice it to say, from a dad's perspective, this is a movie you don't want to miss.
Yes, King Fergus is a man's man. The way he lives his life fits well with my definition. He isn't distant figure removed from responsibilities of the family, or a childlike fool being led by the nose. He's involved, he's responsibile, fun-loving, and strong. Great example for kids to witness.
Let us know what you thought of the movie and whether you think I'm on target or totally off-base in the comments.