I can shamelessly say that I'm a Disney fanatic. My Disney Spotify playlist is often played at full volume for all of my neighbors to hear, at all hours of the day. I've had friends over to watch Treasure Planet loudly at 10 PM before. So, of course, I went to see Beauty and the Beast on opening weekend (with a group of four Disney-obsessed friends, might I add).
It was everything I could have dreamed of and more.
My childhood favorite was brought to life by Emma Watson and Josh Gad - casting choices that couldn't have possibly been any better, by the way. Emma Watson did an amazing job as Belle (though her voice sounded noticeably auto-tuned in some of the songs? Oh well, it didn't impact my love of the musical scenes).
The sass that Emma Watson gives Belle in this movie just improves upon the sass that Belle had in the original.
And Josh Gad? They could not have made a better choice. I knew it would be awesome from the moment I saw the first trailer, but what cemented it for me was the news that Lefou was going to be gay (wasn't he always though?). Having Lefou low-key hitting on Gaston for the whole movie was ultimately the best part. And the much-hyped gay moment? While only a few fleeting seconds of the movie, it was almost everything I'd hoped for.
Is it bad for me to say that Luke Evan's jawline really helped me to hate Gaston even more than I already did? Nothing against the guy, but his jawline really fit with Gaston's character - which is that of a grade-A asshole.
For some reason Lumiere was a very handsome candlestick. I felt some things during "Be Our Guest".
The new songs were unexpectedly amazing as well, and there were some things I like more about this movie than the original (surprisingly). One is that you get to see into both Belle's and the Beast's pasts.
We don't get that information in the original movie. Tied in with that is that it's a lot easier to tell that Belle and the Beast are growing closer. They share a touching moment over Belle's past, and we get just a little more insight into who the Beast really is. In the original movie, I sometimes wondered why Belle even fell for the Beast.
I should have been expecting this, but there was an immense amount of quality one-liners littered throughout the film. Cogsworth, Gaston, Lefou, Belle... everyone has one. Some were from the original (or slightly modified from the original) but there were a lot of new ones as well!
Also the action scenes were top-notch. They had a lot of flair but not so much that they seemed overdone. The action in Beauty and the Beast held just the right amount of emotion to pull at the heartstrings while still getting you hyped up.
With a current 86 percent audience score on Rotten Tomatoes and an opening weekend that brought in about $170 million in the U.S. alone (which is a new record for family movies), it seems like I'm not the only one who was excited as hell and adored the movie.
My suggestion: take time out of your day to go see this tale as old as time in theaters... as soon as possible. It's worth it.