REVIEW: Beauty and the Beast

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YAY! I made it, I watched Beauty and the Beast and I’m… I don’t know exactly how I’m feeling but I hope writing this will help me.

Okay so, if you don’t know about it, I’m a huge, huuuuge Disney fan. Imagine the type of fan who doesn’t live in a country with a Disney park on it and somehow still manages to go once a year. That’s me. I’m not your average ‘Omg, I love Disney movies too!’ type of fan, no. I’m more like “I want to buy Disney posters and fill my house with them”.

Beauty and the Beast has a special meaning for me, thanks to it I learned how to read. I used to have this little plastic book with illustrations of the movie and a cassette. I would put the cassette and follow the narrators words. I even remember the sound it made every time I had to turn the page. Cute memories. There’s also the fact that I think it is one of the best Disney animated movies ever made and the soundtrack… Oh, God. Don’t even make me start on the soundtrack because this will end up being a long, long post.

So, I was delighted by the beautiful cast the movie had. Ever since they said Emma Watson was going to be Belle, I knew she was perfect for the role. I had a lot of people telling me they didn’t picture her at all which struck me as odd because all I could see in her was Belle potential. I never really seen anything with Dan Stevens (the Beast) on it apart from the new fox tv show “Legion” I have yet to watch but I was delighted by his performance in the movie, though sometimes it was a little difficult to analyse because I was not really seeing him.  Luke Evans made such a great interpretation of Gaston, I was so charmed by him and angry, just like I always was everytime I saw Gaston in the animated movie.

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Josh Gad and Lefou presented a little more of a challenge. When Disney said that Beauty and the Beast was going to be the first movie to introduce a gay character and that this character was going to be none other than the villain’s silly sidekick I was a little bit unsure that it was the right way to introduce LGBT characters into Disney films. Not only Lefou was on the bad side of the story, making him one of the villains but also because his name literally means “The fool”, and I don’t know about you folks but I found it quite displeasing. I think everyone had their insecurities about the subject. But (and a strong “but”) after watching the movie I think it was amazing. I think my favorite part of the movie was a scene featuring Lefou, I was so surprised by how well they managed to save that. Josh Gad is really incredible and I’m really glad Lefou got his happy ending.

I don’t need to say anything about Ian McKellen, Ewan McGregor, Emma Thompson, Kevin Kline, Stanley Tucci, Gugu Mbatha-Raw or Audra McDonald because some of these are in my list of favorite actors. I think they were an amazing cast so I should mention Lucy Bevan in charge of the casting, I thought her job was done wonderfully.

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Of course that being a hella passionate Disney fan means that I’m a little bit critical. In this case not that much. My complain was that they didn’t include “Human Again” and instead wrote an original song that carried the same message. I didn’t expect for the song to be included since it was also cut from the animated version. However I thought they could have done a lot of creative scenarios with it. Sadly, they didn’t.

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My second complaint was perhaps the book the beast shows to Belle where they then proceed to travel to a small place in Paris where she was born. Even though I loved the fact that they told us  more about Belle I thought it was a little too much magic for me. I know it’s a fairytale and more magical things are shown, however I think we didn’t need another scene to add to the whole magic aspect of the movie.

I’m not even going to deepen in the way they played with Emma Watson’s voice and how auto-tuned it was. Instead I’m going to say I was glad this movie had a sort of musical vibe, they added more songs giving the film a Broadway adaptation style. My final little complaint was the dress. Belle’s dress was… I don’t know how to put it but… meh? It was as if Disney was making it easier for the people in charge of making Disney Store’s dresses.

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In general, Disney delivered a great adaptation much more developed and deepened than Cinderella. I know, I don’t like to compare either but it’s inevitable even though I personally loved Cinderella’s movie.

What about you? Have you seen the movie? Which Disney movie do you think should have a live action adaptation?

Hope we read each other soon!

PS: I have this other post where I talk about some facts about the original Beauty and the Beast movie, it’s pretty interesting! check it out if you feel like it 🙂

Be My Guest (Movie Facts)

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So today I lost my chill somewhere at 10am when I woke up and saw the Beauty and the Beast teaser trailer. I’m so excited for this movie and as usual I want to talk about my excitement with you guys. But in order to keep it “entertaining” I’m going to do some fun facts about the 1991 movie aside from, you know, fangirling about it. 

Ok so as soon as the music started playing I got chills! Everything looks so incredible. I always said the Beauty and the Beast castle is my favorite Disney castle and it should have been on one of the Disney parks because it’s honestly perfect. Ewan McGregor plays Lumiere and Ian McKellen Cogsworth and their voices were seriously on point! And Emma! From the moment she announced she was going to be Belle in the new remake I thought she was a perfect fit for the role.

The music was amazing and it’s basically what I’m more excited about. The 1991 movie soundtrack is possibly one of the best soundtracks Disney ever made with an Academy Award to prove it.

Beside Emma Watson as Belle I’m also really excited to see Lumiere, Cogsworth and Mrs. Potts since their voices are portrayed by Ewan McGregor and Ian McKellen, who I mentioned before, and also Emma Thompson! (who I love a lot.)

Ok so now that I’m done fangirling let’s move to the facts:

  • The art director from the movie (Brian McEntee) color-keyed Belle so that she was the only one in the town wearing blue. This was a symbol of how different she was from the rest. Beast, another outcast also wears blue and has blue eyes. In the film blue is good and red is evil (Gaston’s shirt)
  • Most of the sculptures we see in the castle are different earlier versions of the Beast.

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  • In the prologue they state that the rose will bloom until the prince is twenty-one. Later when Lumiere sings “Ten years we’ve been rusting…” in “Be Our Guest” we learn that the castle has been enchanted for ten years which means that the Beast is 21 and was only eleven when he was enchanted. I think that could also explain why he has difficulty reading (I mean I know you learn to read at 6 or 7 but… actually I don’t know)
  • The song “Human Again” was cut just before production started. The song was later added to the Broadway show and was recorded and animated for the 2002 re-release of the film. This is one of my favorite Disney songs and I honestly hope they add it to the 2017 film.
  • There were some early sketches of  scenes that were dropped because they were considered gruesome for the film, this included a scene where the Beast is seen dragging the carcass of an animal he killed. However in the movie we can see an animal’s skeleton.
  • In Gabrielle-Suzanne Barbot de Villeneuve’s “The Story of Beauty and the Beast” (the original version of the story) the prince was turned into a beast not for being selfish and unloving but for refusing to marry his evil fairy godmother. Belle’s challenge in that version was not to understand the Beast’s temperament but his stupidity (he could not express himself intelligently)
  • Chip is the only on of the castle (besides the Beast) ro refer to Belle by her name.
  • the Beast name was never mentioned in the media franchise, however, it has been confirmed by “The D Show” and the broadway version that his name was Prince Adam.
  • Chip ended up being the “cute character” of the movie but originally that role was for a music box which was supposed to be a musical version of Dopey in Snow White and the Seven Dwarves. The music box could soothe the Beast with its music and stowed away with Belle when she was freed but because they liked Bradley Pierce’s voice so much (Chip) they decided to expand his dialogue and the music box idea was scrapped. We can see the music box in a part of the movie though.

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  • They’re several hidden mickey’s in this movie: One after Gaston and the men chop down the tree, we can see 3 droplets of water that form an upside-down Mickey head. Another, a trio of stones by the roots to the left cottage at the beginning and during “Human Again” sequence we can see another one.
  • “Be Our Guest” was originally supposed to be sung to Maurice, Belle’s father but they didn’t want to waste such a good song on a secondary character.
  • in the first song we see Belle sitting by a fountain. As she reads the blue book she earlier described to have a prince in disguise, the story resemblance the Beauty and the Beast one and when she flips to a page with a picture if you look closely you will see that she is in the bottom right. the beast in the middle left and the castle in the middle.
  • In 1988, Disney hired British animation director Richard Purdum to adapt the film. His version of the film was a darker, non-musical adaptions; it also took place in 18th-century France. You can watch it here.

  • When Gaston is falling at the very end, a tiny skull flashes in each of his eyes during a close-up of his face. This is meant to symbolize that he does indeed die.

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  • The finale dance between Belle and the Prince is actually reused animation from the finale dance between Princess Aurora and Prince Phillip inSleeping Beauty.

(You can see other recycled animation scenes in that video)

  • Disney originally wanted Jodi Benson, the voice of Ariel in The Little Mermaid, to provide the voice for Belle.

  • In 2002, the Library of Congress deemed Beauty and the Beast a “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant” film and selected it for preservation in the National Film Registry.

Hope you enjoyed 🙂

See ya!