We here at Sisters in Geek are unabashed in our fandoms and we lean in to our joy of all things nerdy. This weekend that included seeing the new live-action Beauty and the Beast, and we are here to say: we fracking adored it. For your reading enjoyment, here are our top 10 reasons why.
1. Dan Stevens is the sexiest, most fully realized Beast ever. I mean. Damn. We just had to get that out of the way off the top. OK, we can get to the serious commentary now.
2. The revelation that was Luke Evans’ performance. He can sing! He’s got killer comedic timing! He insisted on Gaston being an unrepentant, raging asshole! All at the same time, which is really no easy feat. He had, quite literally, no redeeming qualities whatsoever, and yet we loved every moment of his time on-screen.
3. Giving the servants more to do besides sing, dance and cajole was necessary, and so well executed. The profoundly sad scene where Lumiere and Plumette dance in that dark and funereal ballroom, terrified of dying before they can be together again? Pure poetry.
4. Costume porn and cosplay inspiration for days everyone. Days. And not just The Dress either, gorgeous though it was. The little touches on Belle’s workaday dress with its pantaloons and pockets had me making Denver Comic Con costuming plans, and her beautiful flowered number at the end made us all swoon.
5. The dancing! The dancing, the dancing, the dancing. The choreography was flawless, the period choices perfection, and the fact that Emma Watson and Dan Stevens clearly have good skills (or at least excellent teachers) didn’t hurt either. I could dedicate a whole post to this, honestly, because that’s what happens when you are a history nerd who majored in Dance.
6. Beast gets a lonely romantic solo (Evermore) and it is so right. It flipped the standard romantic narrative on its head by laying his isolation and loss of agency over top of Belle’s frantic flight into the snow to take action to save her father. It also showed off Stevens’ outstanding vocal chops and furthered the story without overshadowing anyone or anything. Oh, and it probably guaranteed Disney an Oscar next year. (You heard it here first, folks!)
7. Belle is still the hero of her own story. She owns her difference, is fierce in her love and loyalty to her father, fearless even when she’s actually afraid and above all, she refuses to hide her intelligence. She also falls in love with a man because of his library, which is a sentiment we can get behind. Beast and Belle fell in love because they are both bookworms with a burning passion for medieval romances, not because of Fate, or Destiny. And that’s awesome.
8. The music is still epic and gorgeous and ripe for sing-a-longs. The additions of both the new stuff and the Broadway stuff (hello Kevin Kline’s singing voice! Where have you been all my life?) fit in seamlessly, and the cast all met the challenges with grace. It’s not easy taking on such iconic roles and making them your own.
9. The more complex and, dare we say, grown up darkness of the enchantress’ curse. The way the village forgot the castle and their lord, the helplessness of Mrs. Potts as she soldiers on in raising a son all alone, her husband unaware that either exist. We like a little dark underpinning in our happily ever afters, and we got it.
10. Last, but most certainly not least, it made us cry freely and often. Because it’s awesome, and because it’s sad and because it takes us back to great moments and places in time. Because Belle is a badass bookworm, and so are we. And because when the last petal fell the footstool puppy fell onto his back and if that doesn’t break your heart, I really can’t help you. The experience pulled on our heart strings, and for that we are grateful.
What about you, dear readers? What were your favorite moments, what made you laugh, or cheer, or cry? Tell us in the comments, and if you need us we’ll be off somewhere pretending we have giant libraries with ladders and rare first editions.
All images credit by Disney.