Movie Review ~ Beauty and the Beast : 3D

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The Facts:

Synopsis: The 3D release of the classic Disney tale.  Belle, whose father is imprisoned by the Beast, offers herself instead and discovers her captor to be an enchanted prince.

Stars: Paige O’Hara, Richard White, Robby Benson, Angela Lansbury, David Ogden Stiers, Jerry Orbach

Director: Gary Trousdale, Kirk Wise

Rated:  G

Running Length: 84 minutes

Random Crew Highlight:   Inbetween Artist: “Beast” – Travis Blaise

TMMM Score: (9/10)

Review: By announcing plans to convert their popular films into 3D, one could accuse Disney of lining their already hefty pockets.  If these conversions are all handled with the care paid to Beauty and the Beast I’d happily line up, shell out, and see them all.

A better candidate for a 3D upgrade than 2011’s The Lion King, Beauty and the Beast reminds us why the film is considered a pinnacle of hand-drawn animation and a crown jewel in Disney’s crown.  I felt The Lion King didn’t have enough texture or color to warrant the depth that 3D can give to a film.  In Beauty and the Beast the lush landscapes, dark castle hallways, enchanted objects, and (at the time) cutting edge computer animation all burst off screen just as well as they did when first released.  It’s amazing how much of it works in 3D, actually with “Be Our Guest” a delirious highlight.

Much was made at the time of the computer animation utilized in the sequence where the Beast and Belle dance for the first time.  Still capable of choking up even the hardest hearted audience member, has there ever been a better or truer title tune?  Even more than “Be Our Guest”, seeing the “Beauty and the Beast” sequence is worth the price of admission.

The wonderful voice talent of O’Hara, Benson, Lansbury, and the late Orbach is as fresh and solid as ever.  I’m glad they left the “Human Again” sequence out of this version which was added when the film was re-released in IMAX years ago.

Next year will see the re-release of Finding Nemo in 3D…but here’s hoping that more classics like The Little Mermaid are given this royal treatment by Disney.

A nice treat before Beauty and the Beast 3D is a short sequel to 2010’s Tangled.  I found the original to be highly underrated and enjoyable with excellent hand-drawn animation, songs, and voice talent.  Beautiful 3D sequences in that elevated it to an unexpected surprise.

Tangled Ever After centers on the wedding of our two leads and the hijinks that occur when the rings go missing during the ceremony.  It’s a fast and breezy ride that reminded me why I responded so well to the first.  Our two pranksters (the groom’s steed and the bride’s chameleon) don’t utter a word and are still riotously funny.  The heroine of Tangled pairs well with Belle in that both are headstrong, independent women who you get the impression will do just fine even without a price to marry and live happily ever after with.  Disney was wise to use Tangled Ever After as a lead in to Beauty and the Beast 3D – it’s a fulfilling evening.

2 comments on “Movie Review ~ Beauty and the Beast : 3D

  1. I’m ashamed to say I never saw the original version as a kid. But because I work at a movie theater, I decided to make up for it by grabbing a tub of popcorn and sitting amongst the families and elderly couples that took up the Beauty and the Beast theater. It was such a cute, quirky movie and I can now say I’ve seen it!

  2. I really enjoy your reviews, my sister Tracy clued me in to your blog!

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