Movie Review: Beauty and the Beast Charms Audiences
“Beauty and the Beast”, originally produced in 1991, just got a bit of a face-lift with the release of the new Beauty and the Beast that came to theaters Friday, March 17.
This much awaited motion picture broke box office records the first weekend in theaters, bringing in $170 million in box office sales in North America alone, according to bbc.com.
Some of the main cast members included Emma Watson as Belle, Dan Stevens as the Beast, Luke Evans as Gaston, and Josh Gad as LeFou.
Watson gave audience members an experience to remember with her elegant princess persona and her charming singing voice that is a staple for Disney Princesses. Stevens completely encompassed the life of the Beast and gave the audience an accurate representation of what it was like to live the life of the Beast. He made the audience mad when the beast was mad and smile when the Beast got in touch with his more gentile side.
Similarly, Evans triggered the proper responses out of the audience when playing Gaston. Gaston becomes a character that many people love to hate throughout the movie. On the contrary, Gad as LeFou contributes an element of humor and light-heartedness to a quite intense storyline. He cracks jokes throughout the film and portrays the personality of an oblivious and over-bearing side-kick and friend to Gaston.
The character of LeFou allowed this movie to mesh fairytales and reality. LeFou was the first character in a Disney move to be portrayed as gay. Being that it is now 2017, it is refreshing to see that a franchise like Disney is willing to accept homosexuality as a social norm and incorporate it into a film that can reach all ages. This was a smart and progressive choice on behalf of Disney that may jumpstart a more progressive era in animated movies.
Other cast members to make up the ensemble of antiques in the Beast’s castle include Emma Thompson as Mrs. Potts, Kevin Kline as Maurice, Ewan McGregor as Lumière, and Nathan Mack as Chip to name a few. These characters provided familiarity, enchantment, and magic to this iconic character lineup.
Additionally, there were many other aspects of the film that contributed to the romantic fairytale feeling that is “Beauty and the Beast.”
The animation of all characters not physically represented by humans was in pristine condition. Characters like Mrs. Potts and Lumière were not only given a personality through their voices, but through the animation that brought them to life. The fluidity in their movements on the theatre screen and the accuracy of their facial expressions gave this fictional film some realistic traits.
Another quality aspect of this movie were the songs. Songs like “Gaston” and “Belle” were sung beautifully, with theatrics that appealed to the fans, coupled with well-rehearsed choreography.
However, the musical number that stole the show was the fan-favorite song “Beauty and the Beast” that was sung once during the Beast and Belle’s first dance, and then was reprised in one of the final scenes.
With grand choreography and gracious vocals, “Beauty and the Beast” brought the magic to the screen.
The success and quality of “Beauty and the Beast” may end up setting some high standards in the realm of animated remakes.
According to the Insider, “Mulan,” “The Lion King,” and “Dumbo,” just to name a few, are set to be remade in live-action.
These films may have some big shoes to fill in terms of box office sales and audience satisfaction. Sometimes fans can be very critical of Disney movies they cherish so dearly and feel are a staple of their childhood. Whoever takes on remaking these films must be willing to deliver with a sense of familiarity, authenticity, and effortless magic to provide fans with a satisfying experience.
Amy Rosenzweig is a sophomore majoring in Public Relations. To contact her, email firstname.lastname@example.org.