Beauty and the Beast (2017)

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Director: Bill Condon
Writers: Linda Woolverton (Disney film), Jeanne-Marie Leprince de Beaumont (story)
Released: March 2017
Starring:  Emma Watson, Dan Stevens, Luke Evans, Kevin Kline, Josh Gad, Ewan McGregor, Stanley Tucci, Audra McDonald, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Ian McKellen, Emma Thompson

The 1991 Disney animation of Beauty and the Beast is a movie that I love dearly. So while I had major reservations about this remake – mostly because of Emma Watson – I was quietly optimistic about it. Perhaps today’s technology will enhance the magic…

But no. It doesn’t. This remake was appalling, and my reluctance to watch it was proven understandable.

The casting was totally wrong. Right off the bat Emma Watson – or should I say Hermione Granger – was a problem. While she fits the physicality of Belle, her same-old expression of open-mouthed, furrow-browed facials were tiring to say the least.

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I personally would have cast another semi-unknown actress like Lily James who played Cinderella in the 2015 remake, or Mia Wasikowska as Alice in the 2010 remake of Alice in Wonderland.

Not only was the protagonist the wrong choice, I also found that Emma Thompson had a really harsh voice, which didn’t fit the part of the warm motherly character, Mrs Potts. I think Julie Walters would have done it better.


I love Stanly Tucci, but I’m not sure how he stumbled into this film either. However, Josh Gad as LeFou was perfect. (He played the snowman in Frozen.)

I don’t think the horse Philippe should have been a dapple grey. What’s wrong with keeping him bay?

Fun fact: Ryan Gosling turned down the role of the Beast for the lead role in La La Land. Emma Watson turned down what became Emma Stone’s role in La La Land for this film. (Thank the stars above for their decisions.)

The storyline strayed a little too far from the fairytale for my liking. It went into how Belle’s mother died and how it put a strain on her relationship with her father. It was an unnecessary deviation. Because of these added sequences, I found the rest of the film to be condensed and rushed. (In the 1991 film, I swear it takes longer for Belle to fall in love with the beast.)

I wonder if Emma Watson influenced the story? Because it has far stronger feminist themes through it now, where Belle is forever in control and smarter than the rest. Which made me dislike her. Especially because of the very poignant moments where Belle would make it exceptionally clear that she is a strong independent woman who don’t need no man… She may as well have turned to camera and say ‘#timesup’.

The songs are lengthened, which was also unnecessary and I honestly started daydreaming a bit.


Beauty and the Beast was trying too hard. Trying too hard to make it better than the animation, and all the unusual actors that were cast seemed to be desperately trying to prove themselves too. Over-theatrical acting turned it into a stage play rather than a live-action movie.

No, no, no, no and no. I shan’t be your guest and I disagree entirely with the casting decisions and with messing-about with the story.

Jodie’s rating: 3/10

Sorry Roberta, thank you for lending me the DVD though :) x


About NZ Film Freak

I am a journalism graduate (2014) from New Zealand. Currently working in marketing, and writing fiction in my spare time. I love to write about movies on this blog when I can. I also do paid reviews and voiceovers via Fiverr (nzfilmfreak).
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3 Responses to Beauty and the Beast (2017)

  1. Pingback: Cinderella (2015) | NZ Film Freak

  2. Pingback: Top 10: Best Animated Horse Characters | NZ Film Freak

  3. Pingback: Top 7: Live-Action Disney Remakes Coming Soon | NZ Film Freak

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