“Beauty and the Beast”–A Movie Review   Leave a comment

 

This Walt Disney combination of live and animated action has to be one of the most overproduced productions ever but no matter how thousands of napkins, dishes and gowns swirl around on the screen the basic story that makes “Beauty and the Beast” a classic is still there.

Whether speaking through an animated object or being seen on screen, even if very briefly, it is always a joy to hear/see Ian McKellen, Stanley Tucci, Ewan McGregor, Audra McDonald, Emma Thompson and the glorious Gugu MBatha-Raw along with Nathan Mack as Chip the teacup. (Be sure to stay for ending credits.)

Emma Watson fills the shoes of Belle being the equal of any Disney’s princesses and has the voice to match the image while Dan Stevens as the Beast is hidden behind fur and horns most of the movie and has a number near the end that he belts out with assurance. In addition it has Kevin Kline, always welcome in any movie, as Belle’s father given more background than previous versions but not a major song to sing. Luke Evans is as narcissistic as any Gaston can be while Josh Gad, as his sidekick, is a delight in the movie.

The original songs by Alan Menken and Howard Ashman from the 1991 animated film are in the new plus 4 new songs by Menken and Tim Rice. The screenplay by Stephen Chbosky and Evan Spilotopoulos has added a lot of background giving the new film a running time of 2 hours and 9 minutes while the original animated 1991 film was 1 hour and 24 minutes. 

Let’s talk about the ‘scandal, associated with this film which would take more time to explain then what doesn’t take place on the screen. Blink your eyes and you will miss it plus the exact same thing and more has been seen at least 20 times before and how many times have you seen men kiss, by accident in movies, which doesn’t happen here! “Much ado about nothing.”

I have seen the animated film twice and the Broadway stage show three times, still as elaborate as this production is I will always fall for the love story and the ‘tale as old as time’.

 

 

 

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