Ian Shank, Entertainment Editor

Disney is continuing their trend of remaking beloved animated movies and turning them into a live action format with “Beauty and the Beast.” Their 1991 animated take on “the tale as old as time” was a hit. It was the first animated movie to ever be nominated for Best Picture. The film has cemented its legacy in Disney and even has a restaurant (Be Our Guest), a snack bar (Gaston’s tavern), and a show (Enchanted tales with Belle) in the Magic Kingdom in Walt Disney World. In short, this remake had a lot of weight on its shoulders. I can definitely say that this film is worthy of its title.

The casting was phenomenal. Emma Watson was a perfect choice for Belle. Emma Watson had everything Belle needed: grace, beauty, and intelligence. Luke Evans as Gaston was too good to be true. I loved him. He is the egotistical man that we know him but Luke Evans is able to show the audience where Gaston is coming from. He really wants to be with Belle because she’s the only one that hasn’t made a fool of herself just to get his attention. He seems less like a jerk and more like your everyday Joe.  Evans’ vocal talent is extremely good. He is by far superior to the original voice actor. Josh Gad as LeFou was the comedic sidekick that we needed. He plays LeFou the same way he did Olaf in “Frozen”; he was just this lovable idiot that constantly brought laughs (especially at the end of the musical number in the tavern). As for the controversy surrounding Gad’s character, I thought it was extremely overblown. All I’m going to say is that it didn’t deserve the pushback it received.

The music was darn-near perfect. The original “Beauty and the Beast” featured two of my favorite Disney songs: “Be Our Guest” and “Gaston.” This movie seemed to improve on every song, which I’m very thankful for, but they quite didn’t hit the nail on one song: “Be Our Guest.” I’d say it’s because of Ewan McGregor’s over the top French accent. It just didn’t have to vocal backing that it should’ve.

The CGI with the Beast was a little wonky for lack of a better term. It looked like the imagery was on its final step of rendering but got shipped to theatres before it could finally finish.  I thought a lot more time could’ve been devoted to Gaston and LeFou. The film is slightly longer than it needed to be. The film could’ve had about 10-15 minutes chopped out of the film and it wouldn’t have changed the story at all.

Despite some rather minor flaws I felt that this was a solid remake and for that I’ll give it a solid B+.