Disney has had victory making its animated classics into live-action, including The Jungle Book, Maleficent, & Cinderella all doing well with audiences. Their newest project is the most popular property so far, though, and perhaps their greatest risk as well. So the topic is, did it last up to the original?
In one word, yes, but that would not certainly do it justice. This live-action tale won’t replace the animated original, nor makes it seek to. It aims to be a straight retelling with some new touches, all of that end up improving the concluding product. Although the studio was set on making Belle a more 21st-century sense, that scope extended to characters like Maurice & the Beast as well. Cinderella did not separate itself from the original fairly, though Maleficent perhaps reached further than audiences were happy with. Beauty and the Beast seem to have found a quiet spot right in among.
You are quickly taken by Emma Watson’s Belle, a graphic recreation of the fan choice if there always was one. At the past, it seems as if she walked right out of the Disney Vault, but her character delightfully did not comply suit. There is not any one piece she does in the movie that sets her aside from Disney princesses’ in the past, & that is why it works. It’s a group of small things, characteristics, & the fact that she nevermore waits for somebody else to get action that by movie’s end sets this Belle for a completely new audience, 1 that is used to viewing its heroines described as much more than tired damsels.
The movie is visually stunning, packed with the rich Disney magic that the company has made its legacy on. The times you suspect to steal the show all match that high standard, with a fully over the top “Be Our Guest,” a beautiful snow-covered landscape for “Something More,” & a town that seems like it jumped quite straight from animation in “Belle”. The Beast himself is amazingly portrayed, particularly in regards to his emotions. He speaks so much with his eyes & smile, a credit to the visual effects team. The movie connects on the Beasts’ believability, & for most of the movie, it works. The additional out the camera gets from him. Despite, the more disbelief starts to creep in, sometimes watching awkward in his actions, particularly when walking next to Belle. Up-close although you won’t have any difficulty understanding this fairy tale is original.
Musically the movie might even be bigger, with 3 new songs that appear as if they were lost & never introduced in the original. “How does a moment,” “Day In The,” & “Evermore” all add something new to the rich reference material & take you further into this magical world. Alan Menken truly accomplished to outdo himself here.
You cannot improve but get lost in the charm with Beauty and the Beast, & even the CG issues could not keep the laugh away. As it stands, it does not want to substitute your love of the original, only attach to it, & in that opinion, it wins on all counts.