Film Review: BEAUTY AND THE BEAST (BELLE ET LA BETE) (USA 2017) ****

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beautyandthebeast.jpgDirector: Bill Condon
Writers: Stephen Chbosky (screenplay), Evan Spiliotopoulos (screenplay)
Stars: Emma Watson, Dan Stevens, Luke Evans, Kevin Kline

Review by Gilbert Seah

Right after two blockbuster films LOGAN and KONG: SKULL ISLAND with lots of killings and dead bodies, comes the musical family fantasy animation/live action to sober audiences back to sugar sweetness.

Having no desire to see a musical live-action Disney re-make of BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, the film proves to be a surprise where magic, music and romance can still charm the hell out of a hardened audience.

It is still the same story, based on the French fairy tale novel BELLE ET LA BETE by Barbot de Villeneuve, most would be familiar with A handsome selfish price is cursed by an enchantress to be a beast forever unless he is saved by falling in love (both ways) before the last petal of her rose falls.

Belle (Emma Watson) is the young woman who is taken prisoner by the Beast in his castle in exchange for the freedom of her father Maurice (Kevin Kline). Despite her fears, she befriends the castle’s enchanted staff and she learns to look beyond the Beast’s exterior to recognize the true heart and soul of the human Prince within. Meanwhile, a hunter named Gaston (Luke Evans) is on the loose to take Belle for himself and later intends to hunt down the Beast at any cost. He riles up the villagers (FRANKENSTEIN style) to invade the castle, burn it to the ground and slaughter the beast. Belle eventually falls in love with Beast and they waltz together in the grand ballroom to the famous Beauty and he Beast song. Romantics in the audience should have lots of Kleenex handy – especially when Beast utters the tear-jerking line to Belle: “You came back!”

Great pains have been taken to make the film look like a fairy tale. The French village of Villeneuve in the film looks something right out of a fairy tale story book. Belle even sings in the morning, just as Snow White sang to the birds in SNOW WHITE AND THE SEVEN DWARFS. There is the icy cold winter surrounding the beast’s castle (like the snow and ice in FROZEN) and the talking tea-pot, cup, candlesticks and clock as in the original animated BEAUTY AND THE BEAST.

Watson is perfect as Belle, the beauty but the film’s impressive cast includes stars Emma Thompson (she gets to sing a line of the famous song), Kevin Kline, Luke Evans, Stanley Tucci, Ian McKellen and Ewan McGregor.

Gay audiences should be pleased with the gay content in the openly gay director, Bill Condon’s (GODS AND MONSTERS, two TWILIGHT films) film. Josh Gad plays Gaston’s gay sidekick, LeFou (obvious to all except to Gaston) who sings and prances about to no end. During the fight at the Beast’s castle, one of the invaders is given a ‘pretty bad boy make-over’ and he is last seen dancing with LeFou in the grand closing dance scene.

BEAUTY AND THE BEAST is more a musical than LA LA LAND with most of the songs being memorable and catchy. See it! You will not be disappointed!

Interesting fact: the animated version cost $25 million while this live-action cost $160 million to make.

Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OvW_L8sTu5E

 

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Happy Birthday: Emma Watson

emmawatson.jpgHappy Birthday actor Emma Watson

Born: Emma Charlotte Duerre Watson
April 15, 1990 in Paris, France

Read reviews of the best of the actor:

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's StoneHarry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
2001
dir. Chris Columbus
Starring
Richard Harris

Harry Potter and the Chamber of SecretsHarry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
2002
dir. Chris Columbus
starring
Daniel Radcliffe

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
2004
dir. Alfonso Cuaron
Starring
Gary Oldman

HARRY POTTER 4Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
2005
dir. Mike Newell
starring
Alan Rickman
Ralph Fiennes

HARRY POTTER AND THE ORDER OF THE PHOENIXHarry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
2007
dir. David Yates
Starring
Daniel Radcliffe
Harry Melling

HARRY POTTER AND THE HALF BLOOD PRINCEHarry Potter and the Half Blood Prince
2009
dir. David Yates
Starring
Daniel Radcliffe

HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWSHARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS
dir. David Yates
Stars:
Daniel Radcliffe
Emma Watson

THE TALE OF DESPEREAUXThe Tale of Despereaux
2008
dir. Sam Fell
Robert Stevenhagen
Voices by
Matthew Broderick
Dustin Hoffman

MOVIE POSTERHARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOW PART 2
dir. David Yates

 moviesMY WEEK WITH MARILYN
2011
dir. Simon Curtis
Stars
Michelle Williams
Eddie Redmayne

MOVIE POSTERTHE PERKS OF BEING A WALLFLOWER
2012
dir. Stephen Chbosky

Stars:
Logan Lerman
Emma Watson

MOVIE POSTERTHIS IS THE END
2013
dir. Evan Goldberg
Seth Rogen
Stars: James Franco
Jay Baruchel

MOVIE POSTERNOAH
2014
dir. Darren Aronofsky
Stars:
Jennifer Connelly
Emma Watson

TOP EMMA WATSON VIDEOS

EMMA WATSON HERMIONE – Watch Harry Potter Music Video, Best of Emma Watson from her Harry Potter roles

HE’S BACK – Watch Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, The Dark Lord’s return is confirmed by the tragic death of Cedric Diggory (Robert Pattinson).

MAD EYE MOODY’S CLASS – Watch Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Mad-Eye Moody (Brendan Gleeson) demonstrates the mind-control curse on a spider for Defense Against the Dark Arts class.

SEVEN HARRYS – Watch Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part I, To protect Harry, Mad Eye (Brendan Gleeson) devises a potion to transform people into looking like Harry Potter (Daniel Radcliffe).

THE FEMININE TOUCH – Watch Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Hermione (Emma Watson) impresses Harry (Daniel Radcliffe) and Ron (Rupert Grint) when she punches a smirking Draco Malfoy.

PESKY PIXIES – Watch Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, Professor Lockhart (Kenneth Branagh) foolishly unleashes pixies onto his students.

FAME ISN’T EVERYTHING – Watch Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, Professor Snape (Alan Rickman) is not impressed with the famous Harry Potter’s (Daniel Radcliffe) knowledge of potions..

SIGN OF THE DEATHLY HALLOWS – Watch Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part I, Xenophilius Lovegood (Rhys Ifans) explains the significance of the sign of the Deathly Hallows..

SIGN OF THE DEATHLY HALLOWS – Watch Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part I, Xenophilius Lovegood (Rhys Ifans) explains the significance of the sign of the Deathly Hallows..

DEMENTOR ON THE TRAIN – Watch Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Harry (Daniel Radcliffe), Ron (Rupert Grint) and Hermione (Emma Watson) are terrified when a Dementor of Azkaban appears.

I THOUGHT YOU HAD A PLAN – Watch HARRY POTTER and the DEATHLY HALLOWS, When Ron’s (Rupert Grint) anger and frustration boils over, he gets into a fight with Harry (Daniel Radcliffe).

TOILET TROLL – Watch HARRY POTTER and the SORCERER’S STONE, When Hermione (Emma Watson) is attacked by a troll in the girls’ bathroom, Harry (Daniel Radcliffe) and Ron (Rupert Grint) come to her rescue.

CAFE ATTACK – Watch HARRY POTTER and the DEATHLY HALLOWS part 1, Harry (Daniel Radcliffe), Hermione (Emma Watson), and Ron (Rupert Grint) are ambushed in a cafe.

BUT I AM THE CHOSEN ONE – Watch HARRY POTTER and the HALF-BLOOD PRINCE, Harry (Daniel Radcliffe) and Hermione (Emma Watson) are forced to find back-up dates to the Christmas party.

TOP 100 EMMA WATSON PHOTOS

100. SEE – WALLPAPER PHOTO

99. SEE – UPSKIRT PHOTO

99. SEE – PIXIE PHOTO

98. SEE – LINGERIE PHOTO

97. SEE – RED HAIR PHOTO

96. SEE – UPDO PHOTO

95. SEE – SKINNY PHOTO

94. SEE – SWIMSUIT PHOTO

93. SEE – MINI SKIRT PHOTO

92. SEE – BODY PHOTO

91. SEE – BIKINI PHOTO

90. SEE – YELLOW DRESS PHOTO

89. SEE – YELLOW DRESS PHOTO

88. SEE – WALDROBE MALFUNCTION PHOTO

87. SEE – WHITE DRESS PHOTO

86. SEE – WALLPAPER PHOTO

85. SEE – VOGUE PHOTO

84. SEE – VANITY FAIR PHOTO

83. SEE – VAMPIRE PHOTO

82. SEE – VAGINA PHOTO

81. SEE – UPSKIRT PHOTO

80. SEE – FASHION PHOTO

79. SEE – ZANZIBAR DRESS PHOTO

78. SEE – CLOTHES PHOTO

77. SEE – COLLAGE PHOTO

76. SEE – CORSET PHOTO

75. SEE – COSMO PHOTO

74. SEE – LINGERIE PHOTO

73. SEE – CROP PHOTO

72. SEE – CUTE PHOTO

71. SEE – DANIEL RADCLIFFE PHOTO

70. SEE – DARK HAIR PHOTO

69. SEE – DRESS PHOTO

68. SEE – ELLE PHOTO

67. SEE – EYEBROWS PHOTO

66. SEE – EYES PHOTO

65. SEE – FACE PHOTO

64. SEE – YULE BALL PHOTO

63. SEE – FEET PHOTO

62. SEE – GOWN PHOTO

61. SEE – GQ PHOTO

60. SEE – POSTER PHOTO

59. SEE – 2010 PHOTO

58. SEE – RED CARPET PHOTO

57. SEE – 2011 PHOTO

56. SEE – AND BOYFRIEND PHOTO

55. SEE – AD PHOTO

54. SEE – AND GEORGE CRAIG PHOTO

53. SEE – YOUNG PHOTO

52. SEE – RUPERT GRINT PHOTO

51. SEE – AT BROWN PHOTO

50. SEE – AUTOGRAPH PHOTO

49. SEE – BACK PHOTO

49. SEE – BAFTA PHOTO

48. SEE – BEACH PHOTO

47. SEE – BEFORE AND AFTER PHOTO

46. SEE – BLACK AND WHITE PHOTO

45. SEE – BOB PHOTO

44. SEE – BODY PHOTO

43. SEE – BROTHER PHOTO

42. SEE – BROWN HAIR PHOTO

41. SEE – BURBERRY PHOTO

40. SEE – CASUAL PHOTO

39. SEE – CHANEL PHOTO

38. SEE – CLEAVAGE PHOTO

37. SEE – CLOSE UP PHOTO

36. SEE – HAIRCUT PHOTO

35. SEE – HARRY POTTER PREMIERE PHOTO

34. SEE – HEELS PHOTO

33. SEE – JAY BARRYMORE PHOTO

32. SEE – JEWELRY PHOTO

31. SEE – JEANS PHOTO

30. SEE – KID PHOTO

29. SEE – LACE DRESS PHOTO

28. SEE – LEGS PHOTO

27. SEE – LEGY PHOTO

26. SEE – LEATHER PHOTO

25. SEE – LIPS PHOTO

24. SEE – MAKEUP PHOTO

24. SEE – MARIE CLAIRE PHOTO

23. SEE – MODEL PHOTO

22. SEE – MOVIE POSTER PHOTO

21. SEE – NYLONS PHOTO

20. SEE – OSSIE CLARK PHOTO

19. SEE – OUTFITS PHOTO

18. SEE – PIXIE PHOTO

17. SEE – RED HAIR PHOTO

16. SEE – SEVENTEEN PHOTO

15. SEE – SEXY PHOTO

14. SEE – SHAVED HEAD PHOTO

13. SEE – SHORT HAIR PHOTO

12. SEE – SHOES PHOTO

11. SEE – SHORT HAIR PHOTO

10. SEE – SHORTS PHOTO

9. SEE – SKINNY PHOTO

8. SEE – SMILE PHOTO

7. SEE – SUNGLASSES PHOTO

6. SEE – SWIMSUIT PHOTO

5. SEE – TIGHTS PHOTO

4. SEE – TOM FELTON PHOTO

3. SEE – UNDERWEAR PHOTO

2. SEE – UPDO PHOTO

1. SEE – UPSKIRT PHOTO