We just got back from an advanced (Well, by three hours or so) showing of Beauty and the Beast.
I'd say that there will be spoilers, but except for some more flushed out details, the plot is exactly the same as the animated movie.
But here are my thoughts:
Belle has always resonated with so many women because of her intelligence. In a world of tradition and old rural values, here is this woman that has a mind of her own. She seeks knowledge and uses her critical thinking skills. Emma Watson embodies those traits. She's not going to win a Tony for her singing, but she makes up for it.
I always thought the animated Gaston was a bit too much to be believable. He had everything turned up to 11. Luke Evens gives the character depth, while in some ways turning up the evil. They added a verse to the Mob Song that proves how devious he is (not to mention leaving Maurice for dead!):
Call it war, call it threat
You can bet they all will follow
For in times like this, they'll do just as I say
There's a beast running wild, there's no question
But I fear the wrong monster's released
Lefou. In the animated feature this character was a bumbling idiot. By making him gay and in love with Gaston it gives a reasoning for what he does. And he manages to redeem himself at the end.
And the guy gives some serious shade at times!
The Beast. Does this guy even have a name? The CGI was a bit much at times. He looked like an animated character. (Though in closeups it was better). By filling in some of those plot holes and filling out his backstory it helps give weight to his character. And who knew that Matthew Crawley could sing??
As for the talking furnishings. I loved them. Seriously, Be Our Guest was worth the price of admission. (Watch it. Does Belle even get to eat?) I almost jumped up to applaud!
This movie isn't a new take on the animated classic. It more of fleshing it out and making it a better movie. I adored this movie when I was younger. I still enjoyed the original. I love this version. I like this MUCH better than the Cinderella remake!
I enjoyed every moment! Go see it now!!