Edible Fiction: Beauty and the Beast

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Where the 2017 movie crosses the line into "gay" is uncertain. It's cute and has some great moments with some of Disney's most memorable songs. If you've seen the original as many times as I have, you'll notice that many scenes are shot-by-shot (or almost so) replicas of the original.

Emma Watson has plenty to say about her role in Disney's new live-action Beauty and the Beast. At first, she's a prisoner who loathes the Beast but slowly over time she begins to find herself feeling something that wasn't there before... love. I have a lot of passion for it but I've just had some very lucky breaks in my career.

Edwin: Not really. Pretty much any connection I felt while watching was due to a memory it triggered from the 1991 animated film. The movie's in theaters today. You usually can see the prince just under the surface.

This weekend, Beauty and the Beast is set to become one of the biggest releases of the year. What month are they in?

So, should audiences be Disney's guest once more to see this tale as old as time (or, more accurately, tale as old as about 1740 or so)? "Walt took these lovely, timeless stories he knew had lasting relevance, and he then sort of applied the sensibilities of his times".

"When you're able to bring wonderful casts to some of these characters - that haven't been realized in live action. you can sort of bring layers and texture", Bailey said. It's produced by Mandeville Films' David Hoberman and Todd Lieberman. She eventually comes around not only because her captor starts being nicer to her, but also because of outside pressure - the household's servants are also pushing them to get together. And she doesn't want to have anything to do with the arrogant, handsome Gaston (played wonderfully by Luke Evans).

Emma Watson is boot-wearing bookworm Belle. Then there'd be no direct comparison to make, so being introduced to the songs and characters would have a similar magic as it did for those of us who are fond of the 1991 film. The most surprising thing about Watson's performance was just how good of a singer she was.

Though Belle thankfully isn't blessed with the movie's better songs anyway, it's still incredibly grating to the ears to hear her vocal tone flatten out robotically on certain notes that she clearly couldn't hit during recording. And Evans looks like he's having a blast playing Gaston.

Weeks before debuting on the big screen, the film sparked a boycott based on its characterization of Lefou as Disney's first "openly gay character." The plot, the characters, the cheerful Howard Ashman and Alan Menken tunes: "all have been faithfully recycled, as though some enchantress had waved her wand over an old cartoon and suddenly brought it screaming into the flesh-and-blood world".

Aside from all the musical numbers, there are quite a few laughs in the film as well, and the Beast is quite amusing himself. "And he does that out of love, even though it means that the spell will not be broken". Ultimately they ALL got there to create a satisfying new take on a timeless classic.

But one can't exactly fault Grande and Legend - who both excel at delivering pristine vocals - for this pop carnage.

The only flaw I'd have to pick out was that some of the CGI wasn't quite all there. For the most part, these additions work, but are ultimately superfluous to the story already laid out by the animated film. The new songs may not do it for you and the Cogswoth and Lumiere may not be as cute as their animated companions.

Edwin: I think the blandness with which the "Belle" sequence was shot put me in an even more pessimistic mindset that the film could offer enough new elements to justify its existence.