france, magic, castle, fairy tale, musical, curse, anthropomorphism, creature, held captive, gothic, 18th century, beast, 3d
Extensive review **SPOILERS BELOW**
tmzaepfelMarch 31, 2017
I'm going to share an unpopular opinion. I'm heartily sorry to my fellow Disney fans, but I feel the need to say something: This obsession/worship of the new Beauty and the Beast is BS.
I saw this film with my 6-year-old a couple weeks ago. While there's plenty about which to gripe, here's one of my biggest problems: I can't stand this constant CGI-heavy everything-must-be-a-sequel-or- a- remake era of film making. It's making movie makers lazy.
Wanna make a buck? How about remake the biggest Disney films of all time but in LIVE ACTION. OMG *heart emoji* *heart eyes emoji* *crying emoji* *hands raised emoji*
More like dollar signs. That's all this film was about. Dollars. Millions and millions of them. Yes, every film needs to make money, but Disney isn't hurting. They can afford to make quality films... and they do! They really do. But this wasn't one of them. This was a cash grab and nothing more.
Let's focus on the visuals in the film. Stills from the finished product were gorgeous. Everything was so intricate and colorful and on such a huge scale. The problem is that it was literally everywhere.
Go to an art gallery. There are canvases, stand alone sculptures, photos, etc. All organized in a specific way. There's a break between each piece, whether by floor or wall, that allows you to digest it and have a moment to reflect.
Movies like B&TB are like the entire building in which you hold the gallery is a "work of art". There's no space to reflect, just constant stimulation. You haven't a moment to enjoy the beauty and grandeur of it all because it's literally everywhere.
Storytelling-wise, it was all over the place. They already had a basic story thanks to the original, but you can't just do that. You have to add as much back story as you can, fill those plot holes, make it the SAME but BETTER.
They were shoehorning in so much that half the damn thing was backstory. And it wasn't told chronologically. Noooo, ma'am. That's not how the original was structured, so we CAN'T deviate from THAT. What about the music? The music? You mean the mostly half-assed regurgitated pile of those classic songs I loved listening to growing up and still enjoy? And the extra songs shoved in just so that you always had something to distract you from how they didn't know how to write a proper story with poignant and meaningful silences?
Look. I love Emma Watson. I really do, but her voice... She sounded weak. I'm sure she tried really hard, but she doesn't have the vocal chops for this. Don't get me started on Ewan McGregor's horrible accent and lazy singing.
The Beast was fine, but his song after Belle left totally ruined the moment. He was supposed to be in pain and the moment in the original film where he roared out the window was perfect. You understood his sorry and his sacrifice. No song needed.
And since when is Gaston NOT a baritone? To be fair, though, Gaston and LeFou were the best thing about this whole mess. They should have just done a movie about their war adventures and I would've been happy.
They poured on the whole "LeFou is gay" thing a bit thick for my taste. It was the only thing that added levity to the movie (despite how much fun it should have been already), but it seemed a bit cheap. I'm not going to apologize for wanting more for my LGBTQ characters than to be just the comic relief.
Want to know a CGI-heavy Disney remake that they did right? Surprisingly enough... it was The Jungle Book. They took the old one, used a couple of the songs, but made it completely their own. It was a similar story, but they didn't rely completely on it. Leave it to my boy Jon Favreau to retell an old story with fake animals and make it feel more real and original than anything in B&TB.
That's all I can think to say for now. Call me jaded and picky. It might be true, but it's also true that I have higher standards for my movies... especially from Disney.
TL;DR - Over-CGI'd-musical-number-heavy mess attempts to distract you from the fan-service-and-needless-backstory-filled plot so that you don't realize what you are watching is just shiny, saccharine- glazed vomit.