Would you please “Be our guest” as we revisit Disney’s animated classic in the live film adaption? Beauty and the Beast is not my favourite film (gasp in horror here). In fact, at a younger age I would find myself mocking it due to all the mushy (somewhat girly) romance themes. Regardless, I have to admit, Beauty and the Beast is ultimately a Disney classic for many with a solid story and many musical numbers that will stick in your head (and heart) forever.
In case you’ve been locked up in a castle… the story is about a young prince, who becomes imprisoned in the form of a Beast due to his selfishness. The Beast can only be freed from the spell by the power true love. An opportunity occurs when the Beast meets a young woman named Belle.
This isn’t the first time that Disney has turned one of our favourite animations into a live adaption. Previously we have seen live-action remakes of the Jungle Book and Cinderella which have all proven to be worthwhile at the box office. I’m pleased to say that once again Disney has succeeded and Beauty and the Beast has been successfully transformed into a live film.
Beauty And The Beast’s strongest praise are the characters and the solid casting choices. If I’m honest, Belle (played by Emma Watson), is fun and very easy to fall in love with, but it’s actually the film’s supporting actors that receive my biggest praise. These include Belle’s father (Kevin Kline) and of course, the naughty handsome man, Gaston (Luke Evans). When I heard the actor Luke Evans was playing Gaston I was a little concerned as this role is so different for the actor, but credit where credit is due, he absolutely nailed the character and blew the role out of park…
Visually, as I expected for a Disney film, Beauty and the Beast is outstandingly colourful and has audio effects that should be highly praised. Beauty and the Beast will have the cinema crowd tapping their feet at the returning classic musical tunes and the 3 new, unexpected musical numbers. Besides, it wouldn’t really be Beauty and the Beast without the song “Be Our Guest” right?
The only one minor flaw for me is the pacing of the film. Many key scenes felt rushed. Certain characters will make an announcement about going somewhere and suddenly they arrive within seconds while other scenes could be classed as a little dragged out. As mentioned, this is a very minor movie issue but I found myself a little surprised at times, as if the film just decided to fast forward for the sake of the film’s runtime. But, being a Disney movie, I’m sure this minor issue will not bother movie goers, in particular the younger generation.
Overall, it was exciting to revisit Beauty And The Beast with added fresh direction and an outstanding cast performance. Even if the film does feel very similar, and sometimes is a shot for shot remake of the 1991 animation, it promises to bring back great memories for many or perhaps create new ones for those who have never heard the tale.
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Review Written by Peter Walkden