I wonder why I’m still surprised that the ratings, positives reviews, and cash are coming in for this musical. It has the perfect combination of star power, huuuuge empire for a company, nostalgia, plus, well, overall the movie was sort of… decent. I mean, yes, the added songs were forgettable but the lyrics and their points of placement really added to a clearer characterization and story. The falling in love through literature was believable, not forced or hipstery (even if it obviously would appeal to all those young bookworms who identified with Belle as a kid and might now be intellectuals who have fallen in love in the same way lololol). The touch of feminism was appropriate, not just tokenistic. The intricacies of the set and clothes reflected so much care to get it right. Alan Menken and Tim Rice were there. Ewan McGregor as Lumiere. Like really, you can just feel how much they wanted for everything to fall into place. It’s the reason why I was still so hyped even though the initial reviews were not as thrilled as those we have now. And I wasn’t really a Beauty and the Beast baby. I’m… a Disney baby. I loved the show tune parts in the film, I loved Belle’s dresses, but I always got bored with Tale as Old as Time True as It Can Be~ and Be Our Guest! Be Our Guest! Also, as a child, I wasn’t really invested with the main characters’ love life. And though I was crushing on lions in Lion King, I was judging Belle for falling in love with a big furry dog. But maybe it was because I wasn’t really into Belle’s snobbishness as a child. Haha. ANYWAY. So I was hyped. I was like, yeahhhhhhh I don’t care about all those negative stuff I read, it’s a musical! I’m sure I’d be okay with it! I have low standards when it comes to musicals! I have loved enough musical movie adaptations critics nitpicked! This one is going to be nice even if Emma Watson can’t sing! I’m sure she’ll make it up through acting! But! This is now the part where I’ll tell everyone I was wrong about my hype! In its entirety, the movie was so decent, that it was so mediocre. I know I’ve used this metaphor time and time again, but I feel that among all that I’ve used this on, it is best used on Beauty and the Beast: it was perfunctory sex. I know they cared enough to wanted to bring good sex to the table, but maybe that just made it… overthought sex? Like how much worry and effort they brought that they’re all like, kiss here, touch there, do this, do that, that’s how it should be done right? Okay, and then say this, groan here, moan here, flirty eyes there, annnnddd then they ended up completing a checklist for what good sex is instead of actually serving it. Beauty and the Beast was okay since it met what it wanted in making a fantastical animated story into a believable this-is-what-it-would-look-like-in-real-life display. But the problem is, that kind of display is meh. Because, after watching this, I realized that love for musicals is anchored in the magic they bring. This made me realize how much vocal prowess, or at the least, vocal characteristic, is not to be dismissed. With a movie that sapped all the magic away by trying to keep the fanstastical set and design feel closer to realism, it would need to rely on its songs to blow its audience away. But the talented voices could do only so much to support heavy boring CGI and the main characters’ singing. They were supposed to make up for it by their acting but Emma… Emmmaaaaaa. What happened, Emma? I just thought that years of acting in a special-effects heavy franchise would make this a breeze for her. Was my memory of her acting in Harry Potter wrong? Because every time she was in a fantastical setting in Beauty and the Beast, I keep wondering where her sparkly eyes were looking at (that you can almost feel sorry for Lumiere in Be Our Guest because Belle seemed like she was faking interest hahaha). Dan Stevens piercing eyes did much better, I think. The way he moved also brought so much character into Beast. And oh! Did I shudder so much when Belle didn’t shudder at his paw HAHA. But Dan Stevens didn’t really need to make up for much since his singing was quite… nice. Which is what the whole movie was really, ellipsis followed by adjectives of the hesitant satisfactory kind.