Beauty And The Beast (1991)

Beauty and the Beast (1991)

Disney's Beauty And The Beast retells the story of the French fairy tale La Belle et La Bête

After being taken prisoner by a Beast to saver her father, Belle must convince her captor of his inner beauty before the townsfolk come seeking their revenge.

Beauty And The Beast is Disney's 30th animated film. As with many of Disney's animated films, it takes on a fairy tale, adapts it slightly and adds a lot of light-hearted music to stamp down Disney's family-friendly appeal. It came at a time that Disney were struggling to gain any popularity and desperately needed a film with longevity to pretend that The Black Cauldron and The Great Mouse Detective didn't exist.

While Disney often makes vague attempts to disguise their musicals behind pretty animation, this is perhaps one of their most out-and-out films in the genre. At the beginning of the film, Belle randomly bursts into song so much it is difficult to believe you're not watching The Sound Of Music.

Despite a couple of forgetful songs, Beauty And The Beast continues to win over audiences with Be Our Guest and, of course, Tale As Old As Time, which is now engraved into Disney's history in with a big bold chisel.

The animation is flawless and the characters are also full of life; Lumière and Cogsworth - an enchanted candlestick and clock - will undoubtedly go down as one of Disney's greatest double acts, while casting Angela Lansbury as Mrs. Potts - the enchanted teapot - was a masterstroke, especially as she was a household name having put many successful films under her belt already.

Of course, Disney would go on to more adventurous films during the 1990's including Aladdin and The Lion King, but this was start of the Disney revival.

5 stars