Beauty and the Beast is one of my favourite Disney princess movies. Once I heard that it was going to become a live action recreation, I had my doubts that it wouldn’t be as good as the original but I was definitely wrong. This new remake was fantastic and blew my expectations out of the water. Now it is time for a review.
Everyone knows the story of Beauty and the Beast, a smart small town girl who wants more from life imprisons herself in the Beast’ castle to save her father. After spending time together, Belle and the Beast fall in love which breaks the curse that an old woman put over him for judging beauty at face value. Whilst this is happening, there are other characters which thicken the plot and create obstacles for Belle and the Beast like Gaston wanting to marry Belle. This is still the same with the remake but there is an added theme that runs through the film which relates to what happened to Belle’s mother is. We end up finding out that she died from the plague but before she dies she encourages Maurice to take Belle away to save them. This definitely pulled on the heart strings and made me tear up a bit. However, I felt that this really added to the story as most Disney princess movies don’t have a mother or don’t know what happens to them which made it refreshing that they added this in.
It wouldn’t be a Disney movie without songs which I’m glad that they kept them in. All the classics were kept as well as a couple of new ones. I really liked them; it gave the Beast and the servants a chance to sing about their feelings. I loved the Days in the Sun song which the servants sang as it had a proper Disney feel and it shows what the servants had before being turn into furniture. The other new one was Evermore which makes you really know that the Beast loves Belle even after letting her go. It had a Les Miserable tone to it which makes it even more dramatic and shows the passion that the Beast has. I really didn’t expect Daniel Stevens to be able to pull off a song like this but he did well even though he hasn’t got the strongest voice in the world (not that I can say much). I loved both of these songs but the one that stands out the most was Be Our Guest. This song was portrayed brilliantly; the choreography of the entire cutlery, the humour that was brought to it and the singing done by Ewan McGregor was great. I’d seen him sing in Moulin Rouge which was great but to add a French accent to it was amazing, I didn’t even realise it was him. By the end of it I want to applaud like you do in a theatre but you don’t do that in a cinema.
The film wouldn’t be able to happen without any cast. Overall, I was quite impressed with them. I did feel like that were a random selection of actors like Emma Watson being known for Hermione in Harry Potter, Daniel Stevens out of Downton Abbey and Luke Evans in serious action films like Dracula. It felt like they picked the cast mainly for the looks to resemble that of the original movie, which they did a good job at don’t get me wrong, but they just didn’t seem right as a cast all together. However, individually each actor played their part brilliantly apart from Gaston. Like I said before, he looks the part but I felt like he didn’t really get into the character like the others. In the original, he was very arrogant and thinks that the world revolves around him but I felt like this didn’t fully come across. Nevertheless, Emma Watson and Daniel Stevens played their roles brilliantly. Emma made the character Belle more realistic, meaning we could relate to her more, modern with her attitude and adding boots to the Belle’s iconic outfits. With the Beast, even though with all the CGI which was fantastic (I couldn’t fault it. It was really life like) he pulls off the spoilt prince and the hopeless animal, two contrasting characters. My favourite character in this is LeFou and I do feel like Josh Gad was the perfect person to play him. He brought the enthusiasm, funniness and happiness elements that that character portrays easily. I could not think of anyone else who could bring that spirit to that character.
Overall, I thought this remake was excellent and did the original justice. Everything was great, the costumes, make up, scenery really made it magical. So if you want to be transported away to a small French village with catchy songs, fascinating characters and the Disney flare for 2 hours, this is the film for you.