Monday, December 27, 2010

Beauty and the Beast.

I got the 2-disc "Beauty and the Beast" DVD for Christmas. I was so excited about it!

"Beauty and the Beast" is my favorite Disney movie. And that's saying a lot, because I am a real Disney dork. Even though this movie was made in 1991, the year I was born, I grew up loving it (and "The Little Mermaid," which was made two years before I was born). The story has so many positive messages: the importance of inner beauty, sacrifice, jealousy (edit: not that jealousy is positive...warnings about jealousy, I mean :), redemption, etc. All of this in a "children's movie," you say? Yes. :) Not to mention a bunch of ridiculously catchy songs.

First up, there's Belle. The best Disney heroine, by far. Not only is she pretty, but she's smart and clever, and she loves to read. Belle is a bookworm who's a little shy and doesn't always feel like she fits in. So maybe that's why I feel such a connection with her. Plus, she's really the only brunette of the princesses, right?

Also, she doesn't follow the whole love-at-first-sight thing that is so common in animated Disney movies. She sees past Gaston's "handsomeness" (I've always thought he was sort of ugly), that the other princesses would have swooned over, to recognize his nasty personality. Smart girl.

I love all of the songs. I frequently have "Belle" and "Gaston" stuck in my head ("When I was a lad I hate four dozen eggs every morning to help me get large. And now that I'm grown I eat five dozen eggs so I'm roughly the size of a barge!"). And the whole movie itself is gorgeous. Especially the very beginning, the "prologue." The music and the scenery is incredible! And I love the stained glass telling the backstory. In Disney World, in the France pavilion in Epcot, there's this gorgeous stained glass window based from the movie (all Disney World pictures in this post are mine):

And the library! Good grief. If the Beast had showed me a room like this, I would have married him right then and there.

(Only joking. Sort of.)

The famous ballroom scene is probably one of the most beautiful animated scenes ever. Another great thing about Belle is that she wears a yellow dress! Well, technically golden, but it sure does look yellow to me.

I used to be disappointed because I thought the Prince (aka the Beast) was not very handsome (I realize how ridiculous that sounds since before this he has a tail and horns). But he was actually better than I remembered. I like that he's so tall and broad, like Beast. I think him having shorter hair would be a great improvement, but I suppose it too sort of fits the Beast look.

He actually looks very nice at the very end. :) (Edit: picture disappeared!)

Anyway, the DVD has tons of awesome special features. And I love that sort of thing. There are documentaries, an alternate beginning, and lots of other things. One of the documentaries is about an hour long. I love seeing behind the scenes information about animation, and this one is great, even with the amusing 80s hairstyles. I haven't even watched all of the special features yet. Anyway...highly recommended!

Watching the behind the scenes features made me really want to go back to Disney World. :) It's an amazing place for nerds like me. But since I can't, here are some pictures from the lovely theater version of "Beauty and the Beast" we saw at Disney World, in Hollywood Studios (at least that was the name of the park last time we were there. They change it every few years) when we went in January 2009:

"Be Our Guest" was the best!

Although it was so sad, I almost burst out laughing when the Beast was dying. Unfortunately, they had the Beast in this huge awkward costume. So instead of gracefully collapsing, he was standing straight up and sort of...just toppled over. Like a domino falling.

Poof. The effects were pretty cool.

Besides "Beauty and the Beast," I also watched the live action version of "Peter Pan" yesterday. That also made me want to go back to Disney World, even though it's not a Disney movie. Because it made me wish I could fly. Seriously...if you could have one superhero power, wouldn't you want to fly? I think it would be the most glorious feeling ever (even though, according to the actors in the special features, being in the harnesses to "fly" was very uncomfortable). And the closest I've ever got to flying was either one of the roller coasters at Disney World or the Soarin' ride. Although I did have a dream not too long ago that I was on our farm, holding a picnic basket and flying with a rocket pack strapped to my back. It was a wonderful dream. :) And a little weird. I must have had chocolate a little too close to bedtime that night. Anyway, I'm getting off topic. I do also recommend the "Peter Pan" movie, though. It is really sweet and similar to the book in many parts.

Until next time,


  1. This is my favorite princess movie!!!! :) I love the songs, Belle's clothes, the library! Don't even get me started on the library. I would LOVE to live in house that could fit that many books in it. ;-)

    Oh. MY! We were at Walt Disney World in January 2009! Except we just went to Epcot that time. :) I love WDW too. :)

    You know what, I always wanted to fly too. :)


  2. I LOVE this movie. The Beast is so awesome. And I think he totally was cooler before he transformed. It's something I complain about all the time--I mean, they could've just done a few things to make him seem more like himself still--like make his hair the same dark brown as the Beast, have his VOICE the same (DUH), and have him be better-looking. :)

    But I love it all anyway. I get that "Gaston" song stuck in my head all the time. I love it.

    The Peter Pan you're talking about--is it the 2003 one? I love it, but I hardly ever find other people who do. Here's a post I did about it a while ago...

  3. I LOVE this movie too! I think it's because I'm a bookworm like Belle. And I've always suspected the book she's reading at the beginning of the film is the Sleeping Beauty story, which is my other favorite Disney film. So that just seals the deal. :)

    I saw B&B when a touring production came to my area back in the mid-90s - just LOVED it! I adore the Broadway soundtrack too - Terrance Mann singing the Beast's role is just fabulous!

  4. I love this movie, too! My all-time favorite. We watched it not to long ago, along with the Enchanted Christmas. Spectacular. Brings back so many memories. Ah!

    Hope you had a wonderful Christmas, Kristen.


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