Movie Review: Beauty and the Beast

Movie Review: Beauty and the Beast

A film that gives a new take on the tale as old as time.

So on Friday, I got off of work around 3 o'clock and started to walk home when I decided on impulse, I'd go see a movie since the theatre was right across the street. I was intitially conflicted between seeing The Shack and Beauty and the Beast, and I decided since I'm still reading The Shack, I'd go see Beauty and the Beast, AND IT WAS FANTASTIC. `

I had my skepticism when I was going into the theater, as I do with most remakes nowadays, I didn't know if they were going to mimic the entire original Disney film, or they were going to be completely original, and the cynical guy in me said it would never live up to the animated Disney film of the same name.

Well... it came really close.

What I saw was a film that didn't only have amazing visuals, and an A-List cast, but also a beautiful homage to the original film and even a more loyal adaptation to the story its based on.

If anyone doesn't know the story I'll give you a quick synopsis.

Belle is a beautiful girl who lives with her father in a little French village. She loves books and has a sense of adventure, probably from the stories she reads, and makes her the girlfriend I always wanted. But anyway, her father is a merchant of the sorts and is going on his next business trip, but not before promising Belle to bring her a rose. However, he gets lost in the woods and comes across a mysterious castle. He at first attempts to seek shelter but he is scared out of the castle by the household objects that are alive. On his way out of the castle, he passes into the courtyard and takes one of the roses off the vine. He is then caught by the owner of a castle, The Beast.

Time passes by and Belle becomes worried as there was no news heard from her father, so she ventures out to find him, stumbling across the castle as well. He finds his father imprisoned by the beast and exchanges her freedom for his. So her father is free to go, but she is never to leave the castle again.

The Beast was actually a young handsome Prince with a cold shallow heart. One night, he refused to let an elderly beggar spend the night in the castle in exchange for a beautiful rose. The elderly beggar turns into a beautiful whitch and put a spell on him and the rest of the castle's occupants. The Beast must learn to love people for who they are, and have a beautiful woman fall in love with her in return.

We'll that is exactly what happens. Meanwhile, the handsome but shallow Gaston, through the power of good looks, rallies the townspeople to lock up Belle's dad, and go to the castle where he plans to kill the Beast so he can marry Belle.

As I said, it is the exact same story as the original classic, but more loyal to the written tale of it. This film has alot to be praised for.

Let me first start by saying that the visuals were beautiful to look at. There was a lot of passion but into the cinematography. One the things I am usualy critical of in movies is the over use of CGI. There are times in many films where the CGI is more then obvious and it takes me out of the film, but here is an exception. The CGI effects are almost unnoticable and when they are, it works with the surreal atmosphere the film creates.

The soundtrack is another plus. All the classic songs we came to know and love from the original version are here, with a song that only featured in the Broadway musical. The songs are almost note for note, with the lyrics altered just slightly to give a more modern take on the tale.

The casting is perfect. Emma Watson gave an all around, perfect performance of Belle. She really surprised me with her vocal talant. The moment she started singing, it sent chills down my spine out of amazement. I knew from the opening song, that I was in for an experience. I didn't even know she could sing! Ewan McGregor and Sir Ian McKellan gave comical performances as Lumire and Coggsworth. Emma Thompson gave a spectacular performance as Mrs. Pots when she sang the theme song. Not as good as Angela Lansbury from the original, but it came very close. Kevin Kline gave a very interesting take on Belle's father. I could literally go one forever on how wonderful the cast was, but then this article would take too long.

If there is one criticism I have with the film, it felt slightly rushed. Scenes went by a little too fast, and there were moments where it felt a little out of place. But considering this was meant for kids, and you got to keep their attention, I let it slide. It isn't very noticeable and maybe its just because I am 20 and I expect movies to be longer. That's just me. It's still a wonderful film.

This is probably one of the best Disney remakes I've seen. I'm still unable to forgive them for remaking Pete's Dragon. Seriously, the older version is better.

Anyway... Beauty and the Beast is an amazing film. If you're grew up with the original film, you'll love this one as well. And I gaurntee a whole new generation will fall in love with this tale as old as time.

I am happy to give this film a 4 out of 5 stars.

Cover Image Credit: GOOGLE IMAGES

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College As Told By Junie B. Jones

A tribute to the beloved author Barbara Parks.

The Junie B. Jones series was a big part of my childhood. They were the first chapter books I ever read. On car trips, my mother would entertain my sister and me by purchasing a new Junie B. Jones book and reading it to us. My favorite part about the books then, and still, are how funny they are. Junie B. takes things very literally, and her (mis)adventures are hilarious. A lot of children's authors tend to write for children and parents in their books to keep the attention of both parties. Barbara Park, the author of the Junie B. Jones series, did just that. This is why many things Junie B. said in Kindergarten could be applied to her experiences in college, as shown here.

When Junie B. introduces herself hundreds of times during orientation week:

“My name is Junie B. Jones. The B stands for Beatrice. Except I don't like Beatrice. I just like B and that's all." (Junie B. Jones and the Stupid Smelly Bus, p. 1)

When she goes to her first college career fair:

"Yeah, only guess what? I never even heard of that dumb word careers before. And so I won't know what the heck we're talking about." (Junie B. Jones and her Big Fat Mouth, p. 2)

When she thinks people in class are gossiping about her:

“They whispered to each other for a real long time. Also, they kept looking at me. And they wouldn't even stop." (Junie B., First Grader Boss of Lunch, p. 66)

When someone asks her about the library:

“It's where the books are. And guess what? Books are my very favorite things in the whole world!" (Junie B. Jones and the Stupid Smelly Bus, p. 27)

When she doesn't know what she's eating at the caf:

“I peeked inside the bread. I stared and stared for a real long time. 'Cause I didn't actually recognize the meat, that's why. Finally, I ate it anyway. It was tasty...whatever it was." (Junie B., First Grader Boss of Lunch, p. 66)

When she gets bored during class:

“I drew a sausage patty on my arm. Only that wasn't even an assignment." (Junie B. Jones Loves Handsome Warren, p. 18)

When she considers dropping out:

“Maybe someday I will just be the Boss of Cookies instead!" (Junie B., First Grader Boss of Lunch, p. 76)

When her friends invite her to the lake for Labor Day:

“GOOD NEWS! I CAN COME TO THE LAKE WITH YOU, I BELIEVE!" (Junie B. Jones Smells Something Fishy, p. 17)

When her professor never enters grades on time:

“I rolled my eyes way up to the sky." (Junie B., First Grader Boss of Lunch, p. 38)

When her friends won't stop poking her on Facebook:

“Do not poke me one more time, and I mean it." (Junie B. Jones Smells Something Fishy, p. 7)

When she finds out she got a bad test grade:

“Then my eyes got a little bit wet. I wasn't crying, though." (Junie B. Jones and the Stupid Smelly Bus, p. 17)

When she isn't allowed to have a pet on campus but really wants one:


When she has to walk across campus in the dark:

“There's no such thing as monsters. There's no such thing as monsters." (Junie B. Jones Has a Monster Under Her Bed, p. 12)

When her boyfriend breaks her heart:

“I am a bachelorette. A bachelorette is when your boyfriend named Ricardo dumps you at recess. Only I wasn't actually expecting that terrible trouble." (Junie B. Jones Is (almost) a Flower Girl, p. 1)

When she paints her first canvas:

"And painting is the funnest thing I love!" (Junie B. Jones and her Big Fat Mouth, p. 61)

When her sorority takes stacked pictures:

“The biggie kids stand in the back. And the shortie kids stand in the front. I am a shortie kid. Only that is nothing to be ashamed of." (Junie B. Jones Has a Monster Under Her Bed, p. 7)

When she's had enough of the caf's food:

“Want to bake a lemon pie? A lemon pie would be fun, don't you think?" (Junie B. Jones Has a Monster Under Her Bed p. 34)

When she forgets about an exam:

“Speechless is when your mouth can't speech." (Junie B. Jones Loves Handsome Warren, p. 54)

When she finds out she has enough credits to graduate:

“A DIPLOMA! A DIPLOMA! I WILL LOVE A DIPLOMA!" (Junie B. Jones is a Graduation Girl p. 6)

When she gets home from college:

"IT'S ME! IT'S JUNIE B. JONES! I'M HOME FROM MY SCHOOL!" (Junie B. Jones and some Sneaky Peaky Spying p. 20)

Cover Image Credit: OrderOfBooks

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