#1 This will be a spoiler free review. What spoilers can you even give about Beauty and the Beast? Doesn’t everybody know the story, anyway?
#2 We are not film critics. This review is based on what we thought about the movie and how it holds up to the animated movie.
I’m going to say it right now, and I’m not ashamed of it, I love Beauty and the Beast! I think it’s one of the best movies that Disney’s made. The message that they portrayed was relevant then and is still relevant today. The songs were iconic, and has been imprinted in most people’s brain. Not mine, though. Being the fan that I am, I had my fair share of doubts on whether they can pull it off this live action rendition of Beauty and the Beast.
To a certain degree, they did. It was a good movie, a decent remake, but not a great one. I thought they did a smart job of staying true to the source material. Can’t say the same about most remakes. While I’m usually a purist, I’m not going to hold it against them for changing some of the scenes and the motivation behind them, and for adding new songs. They were good supplements to the animated film since they give more depth to the characters and their true emotions and motivations.
Now, I just want to touch on my favorite parts and my most disliked parts of the movie. I’m not going to go to any plot points (seriously, babe, everybody knows the plot anyway). I’m going to try and be as vague as possible.
What we loved:
- Beast’s new song
“Now I know she’ll never leave me
Even as she runs away
She will still torment me
Calm me, hurt me
Move me, come what may”
This is my favorite part of this movie. My only favorite part of the movie. It was beautiful. I thought it was the best song in the movie, which is not an easy feat considering the Beauty and the Beast song is very iconic. Beast’s song, though, had a lot of emotion to it. The lyrics are absolutely beautiful. It was both sad and thankful and hopeful and pain-stricken and appreciative and longing all at the same time. It was extremely overwhelmed with sadness but also very positive at the same time. I think it made the whole scene more real, like any (non-terrible) break-up where you feel pain-stricken but are trying to look at the bright side. Some say that sticking to the original is the better route, but I thought this song was a smart choice and gave depth to what Beast was feeling.
- Gaston, LeFou, and Lumiere’s casting.
Great singing, dancing and acting. Saving grace of the film, seriously. Beast’s acting is pretty good, though, but that’s it.
What we didn’t love:
- Mrs. Pott’s casting
I thought that that was the wrong actress to play her. I have nothing against Emma Thompson, I think that she’s a wonderful actress and the she sings beautifully. I don’t. She was singing the most iconic song of the movie, and she just really fell flat. I’d really rather hear Angela Lansbury sing it, like she did at the 25th anniversary screening.
In my opinion, Julie Andrews would’ve been a more wonderful choice. Can you just hear her voice coming out of Mrs. Potts? Can you hear her singing that iconic song? Great, isn’t it?
- Belle’s casting
Alex absolutely disagrees with me on this, but I’m just gonna say it. Emma Watson does not belong in this movie. Her voice is mediocre at best (what an insult to Broadway artists looking for and waiting to get their Hollywood break) and her eyebrow-acting just doesn’t cut it. Beast, though covered in hair and CG, conveyed much more emotion than Belle. Don’t get me wrong, I love Emma Watson, just not for this movie.
- Belle’s iconic yellow gown
The dance is one of my favorite scenes. The background was done beautifully, and the camera work was very interesting. However, I just couldn’t take my eyes off the yellow gown, and not in a good way. The design and fabric just didn’t move well like the classic one did. Provided, that was animated, but I’ve seen small productions remake Beauty and the Beast with more beautifully-done and flowy yellow ball gowns. I know I’m nitpicking but this is the most iconic scene and the most iconic dress, I’m allowing myself to nitpick.
So there, I’m just happy that they pulled off one of my favorite movies of ALL TIME. Special thanks to Shirley for surprising me with the movie ticket one month before opening day. I love you soooooo much!!! (Relationships are about compromise, they say… HAHAHA)