Director: Mark Andrews, Brenda Chapman, and Steve Purcell
Stars: Kelly Macdonald, Emma Thompson, Kevin McKidd, Julie Walters, Robbie Coltrane, Billy Connolly, John Ratzenberger, Craig Ferguson
Release date: June 22

The arrival of a new Pixar film is always a cause for celebration—that’s the type of confidence a studio earns when its past offerings include movies as amazing as WALL-E, The Incredibles, and the Toy Story series. So, just off the strength of its corporate backbone, Brave merits immediate anticipation. But then comes its uniqueness, and we’re even more amped.

David Fincher's The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and the lesser-seen, though just as commendable, Haywire started the trend, and the recent juggernaut The Hunger Games formally solidified it: Cinema is currently in an age of kick-ass female leads. Brave, about a proficient archer (voiced by Boardwalk Empire’s Kelly Macdonald) who lives in a mythical version of Scotland and protects her kingdom against various byproducts of evil witchcraft, is the trend’s inevitable kid-friendly example. And we’re just as excited as your pre-teen little sister.