All the films from all the editions, including those subsequently removed, presently totalling 1177. An easy way of seeing how…
Beauty and the Beast
Il était une fois
The merchant and his children, Adélaïde, Belle, Félicie, and Ludovic, are near ruin bankruptcy, but Adélaïde and Félicie nonetheless still spend lavishly on themselves keeping beautiful, whereas Belle slaves around the house. Crossing the forest one evening, their father becomes lost and takes refuge in a castle. Upon leaving, he steals a blossom off a rose bush. An angered beast demands one of his daughters for the theft.
There is only one word to describe Jean Cocteau’s spellbinding adaptation of Beauty and the Beast - Magical.
The film begins with a direct plea to the audience, a plea to simply believe as a child would: to believe in the fantastical and magical. Whilst it expresses Cocteau’s intent it is perhaps a redundant introduction when it is so easy to believe in this cursed and enchanted world. It is one of those rare films that has enthralled countless generations, and old and young alike, without talking down to either audience. Above all it is the ultimate fairy-tale film that utilises the illusionary qualities of the medium to their fullest.
Whilst the film could be interpreted as having real world…
Film #22 of Project 40
”Don't address me as sir, I'm called the Beast!”
Before starting his magical tale of doomed princes and charming girls Jean Cocteau takes a moment and asks us to put away our rational and mathematical minds aside for 90 minutes and join him in something which doesn't make sense, something ridiculously childish, something that can’t be analyzed and dissected by logic. From that opening title card it’s obvious that La Belle et la Bête is going to be a movie exploring the always spellbinding territory of magic and fantasy, and when it comes to fantasy you know that you shouldn't ask a question as you won’t get an answer, it’s all about joy, thrill, surprise…
Jean Cocteau's Beauty and The Beast is a magical and transcendent ode to the limits of fantasy, brought to life with exceptional performances, awe-inspiring production design, startling atmosphere, and luscious direction. In particular, the close ups are given a mesmerizing and transfixing sense of purity, adding to the theatrical and intimate feel of the entire film.
This is the first time I've seen this masterpiece, and I can't wait to fall under its spell again.
Jean Cocteau's adaption of La Belle et la Bête is a film of tender beauty so striking in its visual presentation that it for a good 90 minutes transports the audience into a world of magic and wonder. I've always been a huge fan of the story itself and have seen the Disney version many times, loving it each and every time, but Cocteau's version is truly something else. Although grounded mostly in realism and having few reminders (if you can look past the beast) of the fantastical nature of the story and setting, such as the infamous candles sequence, they are so impressive and wonderfully realised that you never forget you're watching a fairytale. When the candles light themselves…
I think most are familiar with the classic tale of Beauty and the Beast, there are so many films made about it but Jean Cocteau's 1946 take on it (Le Belle et la Bete) is clearly the best one. Anyway if you didn't know a man steals a rose from the "beasts" castle and the Beast says he must die unless one of his daughters pays the price, so one of his daughters a pretty young lady (Belle) goes to his castle. She begins to fall for the beast and see's the loneliness within his eyes, she has a man at home that's wanting to marry her and at this time her Father is very sick.
The man wanting to…
" Love can turn a man into a beast. But love can also make an ugly man handsome"
What a magical fairytale that was...it has sarcastic one liners...a sensual heroine and a poetic monster....ingenious set designs...playfullness...
I guess what they say is true love has no boundaries :-)
After her father plucks a rose from a beast's garden, the creature demands his daughter be sent to stay with him to repay his debts. This is one of those truly (and I hate this word) magical films that astounds to this day. It transcends time.
And the reason I mention this is because my wife, a "Transformers," "Jurassic World," "The Hangover" type of moviegoer watched this out of the corner of her eye for about ten minutes before fully engrossing herself in the film with me. This is a film young children could love as well even if they don't speak the language and can't read yet. This film operates on a silent level but has gripping, intense dialogue…
Hands down, one of the most visually stunning films I've ever seen. The use of light and shadows actually earn the slightly over-used term "luminous", and Cocteau's obsessions with statues and surreal, disembodied figures find their ultimate expression.
I guess I really had a knack for finding movies with dream-like sequences in them this spring. The scene where she's running down the hallway in slow-motion and the curtains are billowing everywhere gives me chills when I think about it. I really wish I could see it in Technicolor - the lush gardens and bedrooms were beautiful, even in black and white.
. . . coming soon
WHO I watched it with: My wife
WHAT was my state of mind: Just found out I have bronchitis
WHEN I watched it: Right around 1pm
WHERE I watched it: At Home
WHY I watched it: wife wanted to watch something Gothic, the design
HOW I watched it: Criterion Blu-Ray
A breathtaking assemblage of ingenious cinematic trickery continually undercut by the dipsticks (one in particular) cluttering said assemblage & the actions said dipsticks are forced to undertake in service of this cockeyed story. Reading the Wiki summary of the original fairy tale, it seems like every choice Cocteau made to distinguish his adaptation from the source material was for the worse. Or maybe it's simply Cocteau's execution that's lacking; if any of the attention Cocteau lavished on the set design & visual chicanery went towards making some sense of Belle's catch-as-catch-can motivations, or infusing the vestigial Avenant subplot with some much needed emotional substance (or getting Jean Marais, in & out of the makeup, to stop acting like an overmannered stiff), I would gladly believe the hype.
There are enough reviews on here already that summarise my thoughts. Probably the best film I've seen in a good many months.
Once Upon a Time, finger paintings on cave walls were looked at in wonder as the highest form of art. But those cave paintings now appear a little unsophisticated next to a Picasso or a Rembrandt. La Belle et la bete is a wonderful story, and yes, if you manage to put yourself into the mind of a 1940s audience member, there is lots of visual wonder to be found in this film. There are STILL a couple of mesmerizing bits, but by modern standards, the once-celebrated effects and staging seem very pantomime - as do most of the perfs. But what makes the film still compelling is the extraordinary creation of The Beast - Jean Marais's pitiable perf and…
Combined the average ratings (Critic's & Users) from IMDb, Rotten Tomatoes, Metacritic and Letterboxd, and then weighted and tweaked the results…