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Review: Beauty and the Beast, A nostalgic feast

Disney’s animated classic has taken on a new form, with a widened mythology and an all-star cast.

A young prince, imprisoned in the form of a beast, can only be freed by true love. What may be his only opportunity arrives when he meets Belle, the only human girl to ever visit the castle since it was enchanted.

This re-imagining of Beauty and the Beast delves into the back story of Belle and her father, which answers questions some may have had from the original 1991 version.

The all star cast gives the story some real substance with leads including Emma Watson (Harry Potter Series), Dan Stevens (Downton Abbey, The Guest), Luke Evans (Dracula Untold, The Hobbit), Kevin Kline (In & Out, Last Vegas), Sir Ian McKellen (X-Men, The Lord of the Rings Series) and Ewan McGregor (Trainspotting, Moulin Rouge).

However, it’s very difficult to separate Watson from her first professional acting role as her signature character Hermione Granger, in the Harry Potter movie series. A remake of such a classic fairy-tale could have benefited from using a fresh face for the lead female character Belle.

For the most part, the special effects and CGI were impressive. But when it came to the character of the Beast, his inorganic facial expressions, body language and movement on screen became distracting.

The soundtrack was just as magical as the original cartoon, perhaps even more magical with the addition of two new melodies.

Although Beauty and the Beast doesn’t quite rise to the occasion the way the live action remakes of Cinderella and The Jungle Book did, it’s still a nostalgic walk down memory lane.

3 out of 5 stars

Newsbeat journalist Rebecca Scheib asks for peoples thoughts on Beauty and the Beast below:

Watch Beauty and the Beast trailer:

Rebecca Scheib
Rebecca's analyzing and overthinking nature used to get the best of her imagination but at the NZ Radio Training School she intends to harness it to challenge the boundaries of others' imaginings.
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