Friday, March 17, 2017

I want adventure in the great wide somewhere. I want it more than I can tell. And for once it might be grand to have someone understand, I want so much more than they've got planned

I absolutely loved Beauty and the Beast growing up. I still do. Belle is my absolute favorite Disney princess, and I hold this story in such a special place in my heart. When I heard that they were remaking Beauty and the Beast as a live-action movie, I was excited but a little weary. But then they cast Emma Watson as Belle, and I was ecstatic. Add in the rest of the amazingly perfect cast, and I was simply thrilled, though disappointed that I had to wait two years for the movie to be released.

Well, two years have passed, and I finally saw the new Beauty and the Beast last night. I've tried to think of the perfect word or phrase to describe just how amazing the movie was, but nothing really seems to suffice. So I'll say simply what I said when I "checked in" at the movie on Facebook after the credits finished rolling: Wow.

This movie was everything I wanted it to be and more.

Emma Watson as Belle is spectacular. Who knew she could sing so well? And she transformed Belle into the most perfect, kind, clever, feminist princess role model that I could have ever dreamed of. Emma Watson is my absolute favorite actress. She can do no wrong, and she just keeps on doing right. And if I were to choose anyone to wear that yellow gown, it would definitely have been her. She didn't let me down, and she gave me more than I ever could have asked for. I've always identified with Belle because of her love of reading and passion for kindness and her true bravery {I try}. This version of Belle stayed true to all of the things I love about her, and Emma Watson definitely contributed to that.

The rest of the cast didn't disappoint, either. I was floored when I found out Dan Stevens had been cast to play the Beast. I've loved him since his Downton Abbey days, and he's been a little crush of mine ever since. And hello, people, Matthew Crawley can sing! Luke Evans is fabulous Gaston, as he would say so himself, and he's got the pipes to live up to the part. Josh Gad is the absolute perfect LeFou {no offense to him, seeing that the character is a two-foot-tall, bucktooth troll in the original animated movie}, and he even added a little conscience to the character, which I loved. Kevin Kline as Maurice, Emma Thompson as Mrs. Potts, Ewan McGregor as Lumi√®re, Ian McKellan as Cogsworth, Audra McDonald as Madame Garderobe {the wardrobe}, and the addition of Stanley Tucci as the new character of Maestro Cadenza: this cast was simply perfect, and I couldn't have chosen it better myself.

Alongside the addition of a new household character, this movie also saw a few other additions. We finally get a little more backstory on Belle and the Beast. We learn about Belle's mother and what happened to her and how Maurice and Belle ended up in their poor provincial town. We also learn how the Beast became so selfish and greedy and unkind in the first place. And we got some new songs, too! I was skeptical when I heard there would be additional songs in the movie, but they are so beautiful and fit into the movie perfectly, as they were written and composed by Alan Menken, who did the songs for the original movie.

And the movie itself is absolutely gorgeous. The colors are beautiful and vibrant. The details are so intricate, from the housewares characters to the castle and its grounds, from the stunning ballroom to the breathtaking yellow gown, I was in awe of the beauty of the movie from beginning to end. I need that yellow gown. I want it more than I can tell.

I am so in love with this movie. Watching it made me smile and laugh and cry {of course I cried!} and just remember how much I love this story and always have. Yes, I think this movie is my new absolute favorite movie of all time. It's a tale as old as time.

Have you seen Beauty and the Beast? What did you think?

Lots of love,
Sarah

Belle (Reprise), Beauty and the Beast