Disney’s latest edition to its spree of remakes, Beauty and the Beast, was met with a surprising amount of backlash from critics. Despite cries that the remake was unnecessary, the film was wonderful, and fans have been loving it.
The movie starts off with Mrs.Potts’ (Emma Thompson) narration of Adam/’the Beast’ preparing for and going to a ball, where he rejects the enchantress and is subsequently cursed. This is followed by Belle’s ‘Little Town’ which, like the rest of the film, is a more mature and complex rendition of an old favorite.
However, the film is more than just a sprucing of the classic. There’s more backstory, including an explanation of what happened to Belle’s mother (Zoe Rainey), who Gaston (Luke Evans) is beyond Belle’s unwanted suitor, further development of the Beast, and overall more screen time for the minor characters and their stories.
Additionally, the film is set in the Rococo & late-Baroque period, giving it the sense of elegant wonder that we all grew accustomed to in Disney princess movies. Additionally, there are a few more songs, written by composer Alan Menken and lyricist Tim Rice, two of the songwriters from the first film, and they fit right in with the timeless classics.
However, the CGI falls flat, especially for the Beast. His movements are awkward, a serious detriment to the ballroom scene, and his face is on the cusp of the uncanny valley, and is a bit off-putting. The CGI Lumiere (Ewan McGregor), Cogsworth (Ian McKellen), Mrs. Potts and Chip (Nathan Mack) look nothing like they did in the original, and their new look isn’t necessarily an improvement.
Overall, the film is breathtaking, and well worth watching. It caters to nostalgia without relying entirely on it. It’s a fresh take on a tale as old as time.