I’m sure at this point, most people have watched, or at least heard of, the new live-action Beauty and the Beast movie starring Emma Watson (and a few other people, but personally, Emma is the best). While I was sitting in the movie theater, listening to Dan Stevens “rage against the trials of love,” I was also wondering how he came to the conclusion that he was in love. This whole movie only takes place over a couple of days—surely Maurice can’t take more than that to get back to town and inadvertently start a riot. Essentially, that means Belle and the Beast have to hate each other, fight, almost die, make up, hang out, fall in love, and have a ball all within two or three days. Seems like a pretty packed schedule for me.
Many people think that the whole story is just a case of Stockholm Syndrome, which may or may not be true, but still—is this really the sketchiest thing a Disney princess has done? I mean, Snow White literally married the first guy she saw when she woke up–at age 14 (side note: there’s a Buzzfeed article about how old each of the princesses were in their stories and you should look it up—it’s very eye-opening).
Maybe it’s just me who feels skeptical about this whole falling-in-love-within-3-days thing, because I’ve always taken years to build up any kind of meaningful relationship. I’ve only really had a best-friend like relationship with my best friend for 3 years, even though we’ve been calling each other best friends for 8. I guess the situation’s different if you’re forced to live in the same place as the other person—I’ve never been in a situation like that, so what do I know? The one time I was forced to live with my class for 4 days during a field trip, everyone ended up hating each other a little bit for a few days, which is the exact opposite of what happened in this movie. (I won’t give you the details, but it involved a lot of crying, yelling, and general chaos).
I love the movie—don’t get me wrong—but the whole situation will never not be weird to me. They built up some pretty passionate feelings throughout the movie; Belle literally brought the Beast back to life with them. And for that to happen, they had to spend almost every minute together, which, again, seems like it would make them hate each other. Even if I spent every minute with someone who made intellectually stimulating conversation (which the Beast does MUCH better than Gaston), I would get sick of his or her face at some point.
Ultimately, that was the only part that really bothered me about the movie. It wasn’t about the fact that it was a carbon copy of the animation—which is apparently something that bothered a lot of people—it just wasn’t a realistic portrayal of relationships for me. (But let’s be real, not many of the Disney princess movies are). It’s just that seeing it acted out by real people made me think about it in a very real way.
(And speaking of the live-action, did anyone else notice the weird growl Dan Stevens made at the end? I still do not understand WHY they put that in the movie).