Movie Review: Beauty and the Beast

“Be Our Guest” to Newsprints review of Disney’s newest live-action film, Beauty and the Beast


Beauty and the Beast made $357.1 million at the box office on opening weekend. (Photo Credit: Flickr)

Libby Miodonski , Staff Reporter

Nearly every young Mercy girl grew up watching Disney’s classic film Beauty and the Beast. With its enchanting storyline, lively characters, and heartfelt message, it’s no wonder that Disney released a live-action version of the fairytale classic on March 17. Starring Emma Watson as Belle and Dan Stevens as the Beast, the live rendition contains the classic storyline that everyone knows and loves, yet adds some additional scenes to help fill in the plot holes that the animated classic kept us wondering about.

The movie begins with an enchantress disguised as a beggar, entering the castle and asking the handsome prince if she can stay a night to shelter herself from the bitter cold. In return, the enchantress offers the prince a rose if he goes to the trouble. But when the prince rudely refuses her request, she turns him into a beast and all of his guests into antiques. The only way her spell can be broken is if the Beast can learn to love someone who loves him in return before the last petal falls off the rose. Fast forward several years to a small town where the bookish yet beautiful Belle lives. Belle feels that she is an outcast in her town, and everyone finds her a bit odd, except for Gaston (Luke Evans), who wants to marry her, despite Belle’s obvious dislike of him. One day, Belle’s father, Maurice (Kevin Kline), leaves the town and gets captured by the Beast in his castle. When Belle goes to rescue him, she ends up taking his place as the Beast’s prisoner. At first, Belle’s obvious dislike of the Beast worries the antiques that she and the Beast will never fall in love with each other and break the curse. But over time, as the two grow closer, they begin to fall in love with each other. If you’ve seen either the classic or the live-action version, you know how the story ends, but if you haven’t, I won’t spoil it for you.

So while the storyline is relatively the same, the live-action version really brings the classic story to life. Having real actors play the beloved characters makes them all seem just that much more alive, especially the antiques, including Mrs. Potts (Emma Thompson), Chip (Nathan Mack), Cogsworth (Ian McKellen), and Lumiere (Ewan McGregor).

Then there are the answers to the plot holes that the original classic left us wondering about. Again, I won’t spoil this if you haven’t seen the movie, but just know that all your questions about Belle’s mother, Gaston’s past, why nobody remembers the castle or the people stuck in it, and why nobody in the castle ages will all be answered.

Yet maybe the best part of the movie is the dance between Belle and the Beast, with Mrs. Potts singing the ever-famous song “Beauty and the Beast”. The live version of the magical dance between the two is incredible to watch, and Emma Thompson’s version of the song really makes the whole scene feel magical.

If you haven’t seen the newest version of Beauty and the Beast, you need to make sure you get yourself to the nearest movie theatre and see it. The live-action version is just as good as the classic (if not better), and it is well worth your time and money.