Having lived a life in selfishness, a young prince is cursed by a mysterious enchantress to having the appearance of a monstrous beast. His only hope is to learn to love a young woman and earn her love in return in order to redeem himself. Years later, his chance shows itself when a young maiden named Belle offers to take her ill father's place as his prisoner. With help from the castle's enchanted staff, Belle learns to appreciate her captor and immediately falls in love with him. Back in the village however, an unscrupulous hunter has his own plans for Belle.Written by
The second Disney animated feature to use their proprietary CAPS (Computer Animation Production System) system entirely, a digital ink, paint, animation and camera process. The Rescuers Down Under (1990) was the first Disney film to use the system. See more »
During "The Mob Song", the snow on the porch caps disappears and re-appears between shots. See more »
Once upon a time, in a faraway land, a young prince lived in a shining castle. Although he had everything his heart desired, the prince was spoiled, selfish, and unkind. But then, one winter's night, an old beggar woman came to the castle and offered him a single rose in return for shelter from the bitter cold. Repulsed by her haggard appearance, the prince sneered at the gift and turned the old woman away. But she warned him not to be deceived by appearances, for beauty is found ...
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The opening prologue and end title appear within stained glass windows. See more »
The "Work-In-Progress Edition" has also been released on a CAV laserdisc in 1992. This is the unfinished preview version shown at the New York Film Festival in September 1991, with 80% of its animation complete, the remaining footage represented by sketches, drawings and painted storyboards. It runs the same length as the final cut and has no new scenes but includes 18 minutes of special features, including alternate version of "Be Our Guest" sung to Belle's father after he stumbles into the castle. It was decided to make "Be Our Guest" more of a show stopper and place it in the middle of the film to be sung to Belle. The alternate scene is all in pencil test. See more »
Perfect mix of music and animation...a solid achievement...
I've not seen the newly added song sequence (Human Again) featured in the latest IMAX version so my comments are based entirely on the original theatrical and VHS release.
BEAUTY AND THE BEAST is Disney at its peak. From the stained glass window at the opening and the beautiful narration, the viewer is drawn into the story by the appealing music and clever lyrics ("Belle's Song") which gets the picture off to a bouncy start. The opening sequence showing Belle and the townspeople in song is masterfully handled and choreographed for maximum effect, setting the tone for the entire story.
The plot becomes thicker once Belle's father enters the castle grounds where the Beast resides. The castle interiors are brilliantly Baroque and the odd characters inhabiting the grounds are delightfully rendered by a perfect blending of art and voice talent. Cogsworth, Lumiere and Mrs. Potts are delightful creations, each with strong, consistent personalities. David Ogden Stiers, Jerry Orbach and Angela Lansbury cannot be praised enough for their contributions.
Two of the musical highlights are Orbach's dazzling job on "Be My Guest" (with French accent) and Angela's tender rendering of the title song, "Beauty and the Beast". Unforgettable movie moments. As Gaston, Richard White's robust baritone voice adds greatly to the effectiveness of his villainy.
It's no wonder the film was the first to receive recognition by the Academy with a Best Picture nomination. Outstanding in every department, including the end title song sung by Celine Dion and Peabo Bryson in a more "modern" style.
Along with SNOW WHITE and SLEEPING BEAUTY, a top-notch fairy tale with its appeal evenly divided between adults and children--as well as the child in all of us.
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