Beauty and the Beast: Magic Once Again

Grace Brosnan, Staff Writer

It is a tale as old as time… and for this classic Disney movie, twenty six years has passed since darling Belle, the terrifying Beast, and their animated household items first made an appearance on our big screens. Beauty and the Beast will forever be an iconic film in the history of cinema for its beloved characters, beautiful lessons, and melodic songs. The morals of this beautiful story still hold strong today and have even shined through in Disney’s live action film, which was released on Friday, the 17th of March.

Despite the addition of a few original songs, this version of Beauty and the Beast is very similar to the original movie that was released in 1991. Fans who adored the animated version of this story will be pleased while watching this version. Of course, like most remakes, they tweaked the story so that it differs from the original, which actually made it into a more authentic, exciting story. This version of Beauty and the Beast created back stories for their beloved and celebrated characters. The reasoning behind Belle’s fearlessness and her fierceness that creates her brave attitude and the reason why the Beast is so cruel is portrayed in a heartbreaking way that is extremely enlightening. Their stories create a thick seasoning for the movie, one that you wish was in the original. As for the original songs that were added into the movie, I rather enjoyed them. They weren’t five minute songs that totally changed the storyline in a way that would make your blood boil. The five songs that were introduced to us in the film were short songs that flowed throughout the storyline well and were rather catchy. They just made the film come even more to life. One thing that I thoroughly enjoyed being portrayed on the screen that wasn’t in the movies was the reasoning why Belle’s father left for his journey in the first place. (SPOILER KIND OF) The movie really captures the loving relationship between Belle and her father and the love between her father and Belle’s dearly departed mother. When Belle’s father goes off to travel to the market, Belle only asks for a rose in return from her father, like every year. This version of the story reflects back to the original story of Beauty and the Beast, the version that was written in the 1700s. In that version, the Beast captures Maurice because he picked a rose from his garden. In the 1991 movie version, they tweaked that a bit. I loved how in this live action version they really captured the essence of the well-known story and brought pieces of the original tale back to life.

The cast of Beauty of the Beast is one of the things that really made this movie as spectacular as it was. Emma Watson really captured the essence of Belle and was truly the perfect pick for the iconic character. She conveyed her strength and boldness of being a “funny girl” that didn’t quite fit into her time period. She really showed how much of a role model she can be as Belle and captured the relatability of being the outcast in some place you call home. Along with Emma Watson being casted as Belle, Dan Stevens casted as the Beast was an amazing pick too. Stevens really portrayed the journey that we see the Beast go on very well. His cruel, selfish, unkind self that is portrayed in the beginning was just as powerful as the way we see Belle start to break through his walls to see the kind, hopeful prince that he truly is. Stevens really played his journey of the Beast’s change wonderfully and powerfully. Two of my favorite characters of the film though were Gaston and LeFou. Their relationship in the film was exquisite and ridiculously funny to see come to life. Their little ad libs and small gestures of comic relief honestly made the audience giggle and just added more enjoyment to the film. The two actors, Luke Evans who (Gaston) and Josh Gad (LeFou), really captured the essence of the snobby, self-centered Gaston and the loyal LeFou.

The cinematography in this movie was aesthetically pleasing to watch as the movie unfolded. You could see the amount of time and effort they put into the sets to really capture the story. Each setting has its own essence that creates a grand scheme of wonder towards the film. Between the castle and the village, the sets were extraordinary done in replicating the original’s cinematography and crafting it into something that is their own.

All in all, I truly think they portrayed this version of Beauty and the Beast beautifully and in a way that can really relate to the audience. They kept key elements that made people fall in love with the original and kept the magic of the story. They recreated the wonder that the original movie emphasized and added even more to it. It made me feel like I was young again, singing all the songs and falling in love with the characters all over again. The movie provided a wonderful experience that I can’t wait to relive again.


* Image from Disney website