We all know the sweet, simple animated version of Beauty and the Beast. But the new live action version (directed by Bill Condon),is a compelling, thrilling roller coaster ride full of riveting action, romance, and fun all on its own. Emma Watson plays Belle, and Dan Stevens plays Beast.This movie is pretty intense, and very fast paced. I liked the fact that the ending is a little less in the fairytale category. Everything seems lost, but instead of getting better, every attempt fails. Only then does love win. I also enjoyed the fact that the characters get more personality and depth. Belle and Beast get backstories, and Cogsworth gets a sweetheart.
This movie isn’t all singing and love, though. Three things you might want to know before seeing this film are that there is a controversial character: Gaston’s henchmen LeFou is gay and seems to crush on Gaston. Another is that the songs are tweaked in little ways, so if you like to be able to sing along to all the lyrics you will be disappointed. The last is that the movie is a little darker than the animated version. Gaston is bloodthirsty and violent, and the CGI makes a lot of things scarier than they would be otherwise. Because of this, this movie is one that you might not want to see in 3D, as it can intensify the scary parts.
Despite this intensity, Beauty and the Beast is definitely worth seeing on the big screen because you get immersed in the sound and color. The big version is very detailed, and it’s nice to be able to catch those little moments of foreshadowing. I also enjoyed that the fact that the similarities between Belle and Hermione from Harry Potter (probably Emma Watson’s most iconic role) end at learning bravery and loving books. Emma Watson’s singing voice was a pleasant surprise. You can hear her speaking voice when she sings, which was shocking and amazing all at once. The Beast gets more feeling, with a bigger singing role and a part as a non-generic selfish prince-turned-animal. It was cool that the side characters didn’t distract from the theme, but added to it.
By one report, this is one of twenty-two Disney classics remade or plan to be remade in live action. I sort of like the new perspective, but this is a little annoying also. When will Disney make a new live action movie?