It's a tale as old as time - two twenty-somethings went to see the live-action reboot of an animated Disney classic (separately). Here's what we thought!
First and foremost, it was such a pretty movie! The sets and the costumes and the visuals were aesthetically pleasing, but honestly, I wish theatres would stop forcing me to see things in 3D because it's NOT fun wearing glasses on top of my actual glasses. Other than that, I think they did a good job keeping the spirit of the animated classic and I liked the additional details (extended backstory, the magic book, etc). Admittedly, the Belle/Beast relationship is harder to digest when there are real people involved, but as a Downton Abbey fan, I was just waiting for the Beast to turn back into a human (‘sup, Dan Stevens)...plus Belle had more agency so it was less Stockholm Syndrome-y. And Luke Evans was delightful as Gaston (P.S. after the big kerfuffle they made over LeFou’s sexuality, I expected a lot more). Overall, I was content with it: nothing upset me or ruined my childhood or whatever, so I count it as a win (although, I wish they had kept in Belle's killer comeback "Gaston, you are positively primeval").
And yes, the library is still the most gorgeous set in the movie.
Well... I thought I would have time to see this movie this week but it turns out I didn't. But. I do intend to see it and I do have some thoughts about the movie pre-seeing it.
Quite frankly, I don't see a point of remaking the original Disney animated film. It's a weird, fucked up story, one that I happen to adore, and Belle was by far my favourite princess as a child, since she loved to read so much. But it's still a really messed up tale. However, it being animated, it's a little easier to wrap your head around. The anthropomorphizing of the objects around the castle is cute and playful as an animation. It's downright creepy in live-action. That being said, I've only seen snippets so it's possible that the effect grows on you.
I know nothing about the so-called "explicitly" gay scene in the film though I have heard that it is neither explicit nor particularly offensive (thank goodness). I am curious to see Dan Stevens as the Beast, though from the growls in the trailer, that creature sounds nothing like Matthew Crawley.
As for Emma Watson, I've tired of her. I have no clue if she was the right person for the role, and less of a clue of whether she can sing. Meh and meh. Beauty and the Beast has some of my favourite Disney songs and they are so iconically sung by the likes of Angela Landsbury and Celine Dion (... I realize that they sing the same song... whatever). Watson has lost a bit of her edge and fire as the years have gone on, and I wish to see that strength she once had as a young Hermione Granger. Hopefully she's gotten it back in this movie.
From the trailer, the movie looks spectacularly beautiful and I'm sure Disney went all out on the effects. So even if the movie sucks, at least it'll suck prettily.