It’s a tale as old as time but you will fall in love with it all over again. Have you ordered your tickets to see Disney’s new live action Beauty And The Beast??? If not, please go buy them before they sell out then come back and finish reading.
I must admit when I first heard that Disney was going to bring Beauty And The Beast to life I wasn’t excited. I don’t like change. And I completely loved the original. Princess Jasmine may have been the first Disney Princess I could relate to based on appearance but Belle? Belle was my princess. She loved to read. She could get lost in a book and felt like the characters in those books were her friends. If anyone could relate to this I could. Being friendly with others in her town but not feeling connected? Yup, me again. I was really worried that bringing her story to life would somehow take away from the magic Disney had created.
Boy was I wrong! I mean, I knew they were onto something when I saw that Emma Watson was cast to play Belle. As if Emma herself isn’t cool enough (can we say UN Goodwill Ambassador) she had already played one of my most favorite heroines (*cough – Hermione Granger – Cough*). Yup, Emma definitely knows how to pick her roles. And as you can see in this featurette Belle is not your average princess. In fact, the entire Beauty And The Beast cast did a remarkable job. Everyone played their roles perfectly.
Now let’s get down to the nitty gritty. One of the biggest things I worried about with the story becoming a live action film was that it would be too scary for JustaBXgirl to enjoy. You might recall that we had to leave the theater at one of our Moana screenings because she was scared. At first, I hadn’t even planned to take her to a screening of Beauty And The Beast. It wasn’t until she asked after watching the trailer that I changed my mind. I also prepared myself for the idea that we might need to leave the theater. I told her leaving would not be an option but of course I wasn’t going to let her be miserable in the theater.
Spoiler, we didn’t have to leave the theater. Were there parts that might be scary to younger children? Yes. Should you bring your small child to see it in the theater? Only you know that answer. I can tell you how it worked for me. Before we went I double, triple and even quadruple checked to make sure she wanted to see the film. Once that was taken care of I prepared her that there would be some scary parts. I reminded her that she knows the story and asked her how it ends. She reminded me that Belle and the Beast fall in love and he turns back into a prince. Knowing that the movie ended happily made it easier for her to get through the scary parts. I brought a sleep mask so that she could cover her eyes through the parts she didn’t want to see. Surprisingly, even through the scariest wolf parts she didn’t need to sit on my lap because she knew the outcome.
I was also worried that since it was live action and most of what JustaBXgirl watches is cartoon it might not keep her interest. She was into it until the end. And I do mean end. We stayed so she could listen to the music during the closing credits. She was so enveloped into the story that at the end when Gaston got beat she screamed out loud, “that’s what you get Gaston,” causing the theater to laugh out loud.
An interesting aside, even though JustaBXgirl knew the story after watching the film she asked me more about why the enchantress changed the prince into a beast. It was a great teachable moment. We speak a lot about how it’s just as important to be beautiful on the inside so I told her that since he was acting ugly and showing that he didn’t have a beautiful heart the enchantress chose to make his outward appearance match. I’m sure as she gets older we will have to revisit this lesson time and time again but it was a great visual for something we discuss anyway.
When I asked JustaBXgirl who her favorite characters were she said Beauty, the Beast and Plumette. I think she was mesmerized by how pretty Plumette was as a fancy feather duster and as a real woman. Of course, Belle was my favorite and I really liked the Beast too. My third favorite character I can’t decide on, it’s either Mrs. Potts or LeFou or Maurice or oh, it could be any of them (except for the creepy Gaston). Like I said, everyone did such a good job getting into character.
Gaston was just as creepy if not more creepy in the movie. He sounded super sketchy with his comment about liking girls who put up a fight (paraphrasing). Le Fou was much more lovable than I remember. And being a mother I was touched by Mrs. Potts in a whole new way. Especially when she was interacting with Chip.
Oh and the music! If you’re anything like me you will be singing along the whole movie. As a treat here’s the official music video for John Legend and Ariana Grande’s Beauty And The Beast.