Beauty and the Beast
What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Beast's initial ferocity might scare younger viewers. And once kids have seen his gentle side, they may find scenes of him being hunted and stabbed by Gaston emotionally upsetting. The sequence in which a mob comes after Beast is also quite intense, and there's a fair bit of cleavage on display during the bar-set "Gaston" number. But kids mature enough for feature-length stories will find this one of the best Disney movies they could spend time with in terms of intelligence, quality, and originality -- not to mention having one of Disney's smartest, most independent heroines. Note: The movie's 2012 3D theatrical rerelease intensifies the musical numbers like "Be Our Guest" and the waltz scene in "Beauty and the Beast," but it doesn't make Beast's roars or the mob scenes too much scarier than they are in 2D.
What's the story?
When a prince turns away an old woman selling apples because of her ugly appearance, she casts a spell that turns him into a beast and his staff into objects. Only finding someone to love him can undo the enchantment, but misfortune turns Beast (voiced by Robby Benson) bitter and mean. When by young Belle (Paige O'Hara) from the village comes to the castle looking for her missing father, the staff -- a motley collection of servants enchanted to look like household items -- hopes she'll break the spell even as Beast holds her prisoner. At first repulsed by Beast, she later sees the beautiful person still inside him. But will her love save Beast from a village determined to kill him?
Is it any good?
Stellar music, brisk storytelling, delightful animation, and above all compelling characters make this both a great animated feature for kids and a great movie for anyone. BEAUTY AND THE BEAST may not be Disney's most famous movie, but it stands as the studio's crowning achievement, winning an Oscar nomination and a Golden Globe for Best Picture. Although based on source material, this one escapes the fate of sounding merely recycled from previous Disney movies.
In essence all great stories are about transformation, and this one beats out even Cinderella as the ultimate makeover story, with Beast's inner transformation preceding his outer one. Some editions of the DVD include an additional scene and a new song, but the original movie stands on its own merit.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about Belle and Beast's first impressions of each other. What did they discover about each other as their relationship grew?
As one of the popular Disney Princesses, how is Belle the same as Cinderella and the Little Mermaid? How is she different?
|Theatrical release date:||November 22, 1991|
|DVD release date:||October 4, 2011|
|Cast:||Paige O'Hara, Richard White, Robby Benson|
|Directors:||Gary Trousdale, Kirk Wise|
|Studio:||Walt Disney Pictures|
|Genre:||Family and Kids|
|Topics:||Magic and fantasy, Princesses and fairies, Fairy tales, Great girl role models, Monsters, ghosts, and vampires, Music and sing-along|
|Character strengths:||Compassion, Curiosity, Empathy, Self-control|
|Run time:||90 minutes|
|Awards/Honors:||Academy Award, Golden Globe|