BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, 1991
Directed by Gary Trousdale, Kirk Wise
Voices by: Paige O’Hara, Robby Benson, Richard White, Angela Lansbury
Review by Melissa R. Mendelson
Belle, whose father Maurice is imprisoned by the Beast (really an enchanted Prince), offers herself instead and finds the prince inside the Beast.
The knock came one late night. The door opened to reveal a haggard-looking stranger seeking sanctuary, but she was denied entrance. Her second request was also denied, and I turned her away. But then she transformed before me, revealing an enchanted beauty, who saw no love inside my heart, and my punishment for treating her as I did was to become the beast.
Beauty thrived deep beneath the surface. Love soared through the pages of dreams and fantasy. Journey would walk a million miles to meet Destiny, and life waited for its moment to come and change the world. And the ordinary would become extraordinary.
And she knew she was meant for more than the ordinary life, and she would not let him tell her how to live. She would find her own destiny, but fate had other plans in mind. And a choice had to be made. Save the one she loved and surrender her freedom, or leave them to darkness, where love would never be found?
But then she opened the door, and pages began to unfold before her, a world thought imagined. And her eyes shined with dreams, and hope touched her heart. But then she stepped into a chapter of darkness, finding the enchanted red rose, and rage overtook him, chasing her away. And death would have come in a pack of hungry wolves, if he had not risked his life to save her.And she made her choice. She would sacrifice her heart to guarantee his life, and she surrendered freedom. And she was led through the corridors of darkness, and a door slammed shut behind her. And tears of despair covered the world outside, and all those dreams she held onto began to slip away.
And illusion began to melt away. Two hearts found each other, beating strong. Destiny smiled as brilliantly as love’s fire, but cold winds of lust and hate began to steal its heat away. And dreams slipped through open fingers as knives of danger gleamed, and another chapter came to its end. And the enemy cut beauty deep.
She held her love tight in her arms. Her broken heart cried a thousand tears. If only she were faster, maybe she could have saved him, but it was too late. He was gone, and the spell had ended. But as her tears fell with the light of her love did he transform before her, a prince in disguise, and a world gone dark was brilliant again. And two hearts became one.
Beauty and the Beast is a beautiful tale that captures our heart. Its essence soars through us, reminding to not judge on appearances because deep beneath the layers lies more than what is seen. Its music pulls the strings of emotion, bringing laughter to our heart and tears to our eyes. Imagination drinks us in, and we are carried off across the pages of faraway worlds and extraordinary journeys. And an unforgotten tale is written, surrounding us in the depth of love, and making us wish to live more than the ordinary life.