First of all, I’ve got to be honest: I’m not and never been a fan of a live-action movie of any sort. Most of the time, live-action movies were sloppy in production as well as messy throughout the whole movie, thus failed to meet the viewer’s expectation. However, Beauty and the Beast just set a new standard of live-action remake. I fell in love with each of every scene, dialogue, and characters.
One main element that I simply praised is how well the plot was built throughout the whole movie. There are a lot of scenes that you wouldn’t see the in the animated version. The addition makes it even richer and deeper, simply making the viewers understand the whole story even better since you’ll be getting yourself familiar with each of the characters, their background as well as their motivation as a character. Expect yourself to feel emphatic to one of the character; I did really grow some love for one minor character named Plumette (commonly known in the animated version as Featherduster or Fifi) played by Gugu Mbatha-Raw, who, I have to say, a very beautiful and gorgeous woman. Too bad she didn’t get much screen time.
You’re going to see a lot of unexpected things happened in the story. I was charmed by how they stick to its original story yet managed to pull a lot of additional twist and scene to arouse the curiosity in the audience. It became a rich, thick plot that was majestically done. Definitely a major improvement to its animated version.
Next, let’s talk about the cast.
A great movie wouldn’t be successful without a brilliant actor. Honestly, I was a bit skeptical when Disney decided to do a Beauty and the Beast remake with Emma Watson as Belle. I love her, but I don’t really see her as Belle. However, that notion of mine was crushed when I saw her on the first opening song of “Belle”. Emma was effing gorgeous! Too gorgeous, I might say. Her persona as Belle was really captured. I don’t see her as Hermione Granger nor any other major movie characters that she’d played, no. I see her as Belle; a bibliophile girl who is secretly brave and daring on the inside. She is truly born to play Belle. Yes, she might not be as a wonderful singer as Paige O’Hara, the voice of Belle in the animated version, but her voice was good enough for a non-musical person. She made me even more fond for “Belle” song, thanks to her beautiful voice.
Also, Luke Evans as Gaston. I mean, wow. This is honestly my first time I like the villain in the movie, and this time is none other than Gaston. Luke Evans brought an amazing performance as Gaston. I see his arrogance, over-confidence, and obsession on Belle completely through. I really like him as a character, although at the same time I despise him for being a complete jerk to Maurice and nearly killing Beast. He might not be a perfect portrayal of Gaston in the animated version, as he isn’t looking buffed and big enough, but Luke Evans as Gaston is simply a character that you wouldn’t like nor hate. He’s hot, smoking hot, that you might fall for him, but at the same, you wish you could shut his narcissistic demeanor and throw him over the bridge. It’s kinda like a love/hate feelings.
Still, a great Gaston indeed.
Please don’t let me talk about Dan Stevens as Beast. His voice when he is in Beast is really eerie but at the same time heartwarming, especially when he started to get to know Belle. At some scene, he looks really innocent and silly, despite his fearsome looks. But hey, it’s the inside that counts! You’ll see how his character developed and grew into a completely different person as the movie goes. Plus, wait until you see his transformation back to human. Ladies, prepare your panties. Spoiler alert: he’s really, really, I mean REALLY, handsome and charming. Dan Stevens might be a real-life prince and nobody would know. He looks royal, endearing, and sweet, both in Beast and human form. Love him, guys!
Others, I can’t say much. I’m in love with every single one of them. The cast were just brilliant. Disney can’t never get wrong when it comes to casting. Other studio or production company should really learn a lot from them, like stat.
Move on to the songs.
My, I would be lying if I said that I wasn’t mouthing to each of the lyrics of the songs, especially during “Belle”. The live-action version really did have a bit of modern touch and earthy tone compared to the animated version. It was humbly yet beautifully done by each of the actors, as well as supported by an amazing visual effect like the one in the “Be Our Guest”. I was mesmerized by Lumiere’s grandeur performance and voice as I’d never thought that Ewan McGregor could sing like a true singer. I couldn’t get enough of it; there was an urge to break out in the middle of the cinema, though that would be really embarrassing, doesn’t it?
The addition of new songs like “Evermore”, sung by Dan Stevens, made the story even more meaningful and deeper as you’ll get to see each of the characters’ emotion and feelings when they sing the song. Stay for the end title or credits to hear Celine Dion’s “How Does a Moment Last Forever”, an original song which specifically made for the live-action movie, that instantly become one of my favorites.
In short, Beauty and the Beast is a brilliant movie, with a thick and well-crafted plot and characters that you would definitely fell in love with. Each of the every scenes were magical and enchanting, with a lot of twist and unpredictable moments. The songs and music added as sweet as well as endearing elements that makes you wanted to sing along. A wonderful mix of fairy tales and family-friendly movie that you simply don’t wanna miss. If you love Disney and fairy tales with a light yet meaningful as well as engaging story, Beauty and the Beast is perfect for you.