Beauty and the Beast
5 / 5
IMDb Rating: 7.9
Starring: Emma Watson, Dan Stevens, Luke Evans, Ewan McGregor, Ian McKellan, Emma Thompson, Kevin Kline, Josh Gad.
Director: Bill Condon
Plot Summary: Belle (Emma Watson), a bright, beautiful and independent young woman, is taken prisoner by a beast (Dan Stevens) in its castle. Despite her fears, she befriends the castle’s enchanted staff and learns to look beyond the beast’s hideous exterior, allowing her to recognize the kind heart and soul of the true prince that hides on the inside.
Disney’s live-action remake of the classic, Beauty and the Beast, has hit cinemas worldwide, following on from a colossal media and promotion campaign. Given the exposure and hype for this remake, the expectation among many was that the film would fall flat or never get close to matching up to the original. All of those cynical and downcast thoughts were quickly dashed in a little over of two hours of wonderful and magical storytelling. A stellar cast, were perfectly cast, the CGI and sets helped to create realistic and dreamy settings, and the acting of everyone made sure that the film flowed as beautifully as Belle’s iconic dress.
The impression I got throughout the film, was one of Disney’s sense of wonder mixed with a Golden Age Hollywood glamour and artistry. There were many scenes, notably the “Beauty and the Beast” scene, where opulence and majesty were prevalent in everything, from Belle’s dress (outstanding!) to the castle’s decorations. The vibrancy of these scenes were breathtaking to watch and a feast for the eyes. Speaking of feasts, another song/scene that worked very well was “Be Our Guest”. The CGI and singing worked extremely well with one another, and everything flowed exceptionally well. Ewan McGregor’s singing was especially good in this scene, which came as no surprise given his role in Moulin Rouge all those years ago.
Emma’s Belle, and Dan’s Beast had great chemistry with one another, and the burgeoning romance was presented in a realistic and believable manner which did justice to the audience that expected another masterpiece to live up to the Disney classics, which this is sure to become. The banter and verbal sparring was excellent, and this helped to create a rapport between them, and also to sow the seeds of the romance that was to build upon this.
It can not be helped but to get lost in this film. The storytelling was paced perfectly well, there wasn’t a moment where I think anyone would be bored or looking at their watch/phone. The progression of the romance was a critical aspect that contributed to the storytelling success, and props go to Emma and Dan’s acting ability and the evident rapport they have with one another, but also to the director, Bill Condon, who has taken on the enormous responsibility for the film, and he deserves the adulation that the film is sure to get.
Beauty and the Beast is a wondrous and beautiful experience that everyone, young and old, would enjoy. The ‘beauty on the inside’ moral is something that needs to rear its head in the age of social media, where instant gratification through beauty and filters is seemingly important to a large portion of people. The exceptional casting, fantastic CGI and brilliant direction have all come together to create another Disney masterpiece, alongside the original, and will be watched by a new generation of people that will fall in love with Emma and Dan’s Beauty and the Beast. This is a film that I have instantly fallen in love with, and I will be pre-ordering it on Blu-Ray ASAP!!
The Humpo Show | Richard