Beauty and the Beast (1946) - Drama, Fantasy, Romance

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A beautiful young woman takes her father's place as the prisoner of a mysterious beast, who wishes to marry her.

IMDB: 7.9
Director: Jean Cocteau
Stars: Jean Marais, Josette Day
Length: 93 Minutes
PG Rating: N/A
Reviews: 9 out of 132 found boring (6.81%)

One-line Reviews (70)

Jean Marais plays the three male characters in once, as if he embodied a universal trinity, we're all good, bad people and there's something maybe monstrous about us yet revealing of our most fascinating aspect, maybe the Beast is the perfect metaphor for Subconscious.

Visually stunning .

Overall, stunning and wondrous, for lovers of timeless fairy tales, touching love stories and visually stunning movies, watch La Belle et la Bete.

I felt the same way about Sofia Coppolla's Marie Antoinette--which had amazing costumes, music, cinematography and sets, but left me feeling empty and dissatisfied.

Stunning, simply stunning.

"Beauty and the Beast" is a fascinating adaptation of the Leprince de Beaumont fairy tale that tweaks the story's usual theme of love beyond appearance.

The movie gets told like a stage-play, with some slow moments in it.

It's dull, it's dated, it's useless storytelling.

It's worth watching if a film student; other than that, not so much.

This fantasy film is a bit of a mess, and slightly grotesque in parts, eg, the busts by the fireplace that come to life and the arms and hands that serve as torch-holders that also come to life, but if you suspend belief and sit through it (even though it is mostly boring), you will almost be entertained.

But there's still much to enjoy: the whimsy and magic, the folkloric patterns to the dialogue exchanges and of course the many rich, often surreal images that are perfectly realised and edited to keep you immersed in the illusion.

Granted, Cocteau sprays his own magic potion onto the story's child-friendly prospect, and its ending comes off as both expected and unexpected .

If it's confusing for me, then it's too much for the casual audience.

Cocteau holds one of the more intriguing positions among history's directors.

The version I saw was in French with English subtitles, but the visuals, in glorious black and white, are so stunning, you could almost cover up the subtitles and still understand what's going on.

" (which he did on way too many occasions), he affected a deliberate tone that became more and more contrived on each utterance.

View on the film:Before I get to the film,I have to mention Criterion's splendid transfer,with the crisp audio and crystal image being joined by a host of fascinating extras.

Long before its existence, however, Cocteau was leaving an imprint on the fabric of magic and mysticism in cinema, beautifully creating a world filled to the brim with lovely art direction, incredible set design, and housing some of the most thrilling effects and makeup in a feature-length adaptation of a fairytale.

For me, it IS the grotesque; the arms protruding from walls holding candlesticks, the carved wooden embellishments that come to life, dull, static statues and portraits that become human.

The costume design is perhaps the most compelling aspect with the acting (obviously inspired by pantomime) and the score somewhat over-dramatic.

I found the Disney version far more magical and emotionally engaging.

Overall, I felt this movie was very boring and not as well made as it could have been.

What made the film though were the breathtaking visuals, the cinematography is superb, the sets are beautiful, the costumes are exquisite and there are stunning interiors that look like the paintings of Dore and Vermeer.

This was a decently made movie with a very boring and horribly forced plot.

Stunning Movie, Cocteau Creates a real fairy tale atmosphere .

The classic fairy tale is given remarkable treatment by Jean Cocteau as he tells the tale of a beautiful girl who falls in the love with a tortured but charming Beast (played by Jean Maris in a stunning performance).

Blood of a Poet was on first, and was so appallingly boring and obscure that I nearly didn't bother to stay for Belle.

Josette Day's Belle is cold and even cruel at times, but this is what makes her character fascinating.

The slow build-up to the first appearance of the "Beast" is well-conceived, and once Jean Marais gets the chance, he makes his character a memorable one.

I began to get bored very quickly in this movie, as none of the characters were very relatable, nor were they very interesting.

I can definitely pin-point this work, to rap this up, as a highlighted mark in the history of (French) film, with an artist who can take his ideas and transfer them to a past work and make them as palatable, and at the least fascinating to the common film-fan, as possible for the period it was made.

The message of the film is rather simplicity pretentious.

The visuals ARE stunning and what makes these special effects so SPECIAL is that they are achieved without help from the labs or cgi; the disembodied hands bearing candelabrae, the sculptured heads boasting movable eyes etc. With visuals this good the acting is superfluous which is just as well because it is pedestrian at best with both leads walking through it.

This movie just seems to have it all: it's visuals are very impressive, the romance is very charming and not at all phoned in, the story is engaging and surprisingly tense, and the acting is just superb.

I thought the acting was bland, though Belle is indeed a beauty.

This is a stunning film for the eyes and senses.

" From the masterful use of contrast to the dated yet still-eerie special effects, "Beauty and the Beast" is more than sophisticated entertainment; it is cinematically compelling as well.

Absolutely breathtaking.

This movie is just pure, undiluted, breathtaking magic and romance.

Entertaining plot with solid direction from Jean Cocteau.

This movie has very well done make-up and costume design, as the Beast looks absolutely stunning!

This film has some creatively entertaining cinematic moments and an amusingly memorable charm.

Which makes him more fascinating.

La Belle et La Bete is one of the most visually stunning films I have ever seen.

The film is absolutely stunning in every regard, almost like visual poetry based on the timeless fairy tale.

Their backdrop gives Henri Alekan the motives to add cinematography of a truly evocative timing and grace.

I have seen and very much liked Disney's version, which has stunning Gothic imagery - castle within dark and dangerous forest, magical rose - and perfect message - see the inner beauty and purity of heart.

It's mysterious, slow (in a good way), eerie, poetic and beautifully filmed.

Although Jean Cocteau pleads in the main titles for his viewers to be willing to suspend their disbelief for the story's sake, it really takes very little effort to become immersed in the fantasy world of the characters.

Children should be enchanted by the engrossing production design, and if they are patient, they might sit for the entire film.

This is not only a wonderful film to own, it's worth watching carefully if you're into how films are made.

A lot of people believe, that the movie is somewhat outdated, silly, slow, confusing and dull.

It's rare, surreal beauty is breathtaking.

Overall I really enjoyed it.

The long scenes in which Belle and the Beast talk may also bore children who might be waiting for an elaborate music number.

An engaging adult fairytale .

That's a problem- that one corporation should have almost complete dominion on such a rich cultural heritage, grinding it down to easily digestible slop for big fat idiots who like their happy meals bland.

This is one of the most beautiful films ever filmed and after all these years its still visually stunning to watch.

The story is solid and engaged me easily enough even if it has some weaknesses, while Cocteau's imaginative delivery makes for an engaging adult fairytale.

Oct 2015:Whilst I have had the chance to watch dozens of stunning "world cinema" titles,the bold images from Beauty and the Beast have always stayed in my mind.

The basic story is given depth and meaning, making it a memorable statement of its basic themes while also making for enjoyable viewing.

The makeup was very good, but the movie was bogged down by poor camera work, a forced love story, and very slow and poorly paced story.

I watched it once with a friend who, a little bored by it at first (I can't imagine why), kept narrating the characters' thoughts (please don't do this!

Still, Cocteau's film features wonderful art design (Cocteau mingled with many French surrealists), inventive camera work and is pleasantly fast paced.

The magic here is more evocative without the condescension of later-day dip$hit Di$ney and all their political correctness and anachronism, rendered in crisp black & white en francais.

Even the credits are absorbing.

Granted, Cocteau sprays his own magic potion onto the story's child-friendly prospect, and its ending comes off as both expected and unexpected, what if Belle prefers the rough-diamond Beast to the four-square Prince?

A dull and meaningless bore .

As he returns home empty handed in a tempestuous storm, he finds refuge in a castle.

If that's what you're looking for or expecting, do not watch this original adaptation of the tale, which is in no way comparable to the Disney movie (which, granted, is enjoyable too) except for the main plot.