Walt Disney’s 1991 instant traditional, Beauty and the Beast are not only the finest cartoon movie available but deserves a prominent position on any list of all-time greats. In the past, I have already been recognized to criticize Disney from time-to-time, however, not at this juncture. Beauty and the Beast are a triumph of artistry?
It has arranged the standard for today’s animated motion picture, improving upon THE TINY Mermaid and creating an even that no following animated film has equaled. The tale told by Beauty and the Beast can be an old one, dating back decades before the version penned by Jeanne-Marie Leprince de Beaumont, where screenwriter Linda Woolverton centered this script.
Understandably, the individuals at Disney have added their own spin by changing certain story details, modernizing Belle’s character (she’s a feminist) and adding a gallery of speaking objects. In the Beast’s ensorcelled castle, everything has a tone of voice: candlesticks, clocks, pots, cups, wardrobes, and feather dusters. The filmmakers obviously took their inspiration because of this from Jean Cocteau’s classic 1946 version, where, however the items in the castle didn’t sing or frolic, there was a pervasive sense of enchantment. Watch that film, then watch that one — the stylistic similarities, in the appearance and feel of the castle especially, are impossible to miss.
Belle (voice of Paige O’Hara) is the most amazing girl in a provincial town in France. For those who might want her as a wife Unfortunately, like the dim, narcissistic Gaston (Richard White), she’s also one of the village’s oddest denizens. She helps to keep to herself, helping her inventor father, Maurice (Rex Everhart), along with his contraptions, and, in her free time, devouring books.
She has read just about everything available in the city and awaits the arrival of anything new eagerly. Each time she ventures outdoors, she draws snickers, and stares, but, despite her strangeness, Gaston is set to marry her. Then, day one fateful, her father disappears in the forest. Belle will go searching for him and stumbles upon a dark and scary castle. Venturing inside, a gallery is found out by her of magical creatures? As a love, Beauty and the Beast are a delightful confection, creating a set of memorable, three-dimensional character types and offering us a reason to root because of their union.
Belle is strong-willed, 3rd party, and smart. The animators have taken pains to make her features more versatile than those of any previous Disney heroine, and her face shows a wide range of expressions: anger, concern, contempt, contrition, fear, joy, sadness, sarcasm, skepticism, and question. The Beast, despite his terrifying appearance, isn’t as horrible as he first appears. Within him beats the center of a genuine hero, and, in a take action of self-sacrifice when he challenges his life for Belle, he displays his true nature. The real allure of the movie, however, is twofold: the amazingly-detailed computer animation and a half- dozen spectacular song-and-dance numbers. Of all Disney’s “new wave” cartoon features, this is actually the most polished-looking.
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Although Aladdin, The Lion King, as well as the Hunchback of Notre Dame all have their share of eye-popping occasions, none are as consistently impressive as those in Beauty and the Beast. The ballroom sequence, which mixes computer- generated backgrounds with hand-drawn characters, is the best scene in the movie, but it is equaled by a handful of others nearly.
And, as the camera in most animated movies remains mainly static, here it’s frequently on the move, soaring and zooming as it circles character types and imitates tracking photos. Visually, Beauty and the Beast are so carefully-constructed that repeated viewings reveal new details, like the wayward strands of hair that fall across Belle’s forehead. The production figures, with music by Alan Menken and lyrics by Howard Ashman (the duo who worked on The Little Mermaid), represent the best in Disney’s significant arsenal. They’re the animated equivalent of Broadway show-stoppers, with all the current audacity and energy of something choreographed by Busby Berkeley.