As a child watching your favorite animated movie you see in your minds eye that world as if it existed in reality. Now Disney has actually done just that with their live action Beauty and the Beast.
Without hesitation when asked what my favorite Princess movie is I have always answered Beauty and the Beast. To me, Belle was the first princess that was smart and confident on her own and didn’t need to be saved by a prince; instead she was the one doing the saving. When I heard it was being remade into a live action film I will say I was skeptical. How could they improve on perfection? And more importantly, they better not screw it up! I can without a doubt say now that yes, they can improve perfection and no, they didn’t come close to screwing it up.
Everything you loved in the original is there, nothing has changed, but they did take the time to fill in the gaps that have always lingered, at least in my mind. What happened to Belle’s mom? How did the villagers never know that there was a giant castle in the woods? Where is Mr. Potts? All of these questions are answered, and more. The visual is breathtaking; gorgeous and opulent yet believable. The music is great…who knew Emma Watson could sing and the Beast has a voice too! All the treasured songs are there and they have added a few more but all in the same style as the originals, big, rich, full show tunes. And, the actors! The movie is so well casted with each actor becoming their character and nailing the individual characteristics and quirks each character has. Belle is refined and tough. Beast is angry and broken yet sweet and charming. Gaston is ruthless and arrogant and delicious is his adoration of himself. You feel Maurice’s pain, the compassion and love the staff has for Beast even though his actions cursed them all. LeFou steals every scene he is in. Speaking of LeFou, I feel that I must address a particular element that recently garnered headlines, that “exclusively gay moment”.
First, how someone who saw the original animated film and didn’t think LeFou was a little too into Gaston just didn’t want to see it. That being said, the so-called exclusively gay moment occurs at the end of the movie and if you blink you’ll miss it. Further, if nothing was ever said, I doubt anyone would have picked up on it. For a brief moment LeFou dances with another man and smiles. That is it. Never mind that the opening scene of the movie has dozens of women dancing together and no one mentions that. Why? Because they are both innocent moments. Yes LeFou may have realized at that moment he likes men but the reality is that most children will never pick up on that just as they wont think twice of the women dancing together. Do not let this headline should not be a reason to not see this movie. In fact, there is no reason to not see this film. Grab you partner, children, friends and go see Beauty and the Beast! You will not be disappointed.