Emma Watson's foray into Disney's live-action Beauty and the Beast is certainly a spectacle to behold — a highly-anticipated movie that provides us with an enchanting re-telling of one of the most beloved fairytales ever created.
In theatres from March 17, and also starring a myriad of Hollywood's biggest names, it is arguably the biggest thing to come out of Walt Disney's studio in 2017 — here's the official trailer:
- The Live-Action 'Beauty And The Beast' Has Everything You Remember And More: Watch The Side-By-Side
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- The Original Mrs. Potts Still Loves The Animated 'Beauty And The Beast' As Much As We Do
Without a doubt, there's no fairytale quite like. However, while you're marveling at #EmmaWatson waltzing about in that canary-yellow gown, try to remember that there are also a number of movies out there that borrow from the classic tale as old as time — here are a few that are most certainly worth your attention:
1. 'La Belle Et La Bête' (1946)
- Who's in it? Josette Day, Jean Marais, Marcel
In many ways, French production La Belle Et La Bête (#BeautyandtheBeast) is the very first live-action re-telling of the timeless tale.
Directed by industry legend Jean Cocteau — and featuring a stunning score by Georges Auric — the adaptation of the 1757 fairytale has remained one of the most iconic ever since it was first screened back in post-Second World War France in 1946. Today, the story of a repellant beast who falls in love with a courageous young woman is widely recognized as a classic of French cinema.
2. 'Edward Scissorhands' (1990)
- Who's in it? Johnny Depp, Winona Ryder, Dianne Wiest
Another movie like Beauty and the Beast was offered up in the '90s in the shape of Johnny Depp and Winona Ryder in Edward Scissorhands, an American romantic dark fantasy film about a man who is unfortunate enough to have scissor blades for hands.
After moving in with a suburban family, the gentle "monster" falls in love with the teenage daughter, a moment that marks the beginning of a beautiful friendship between an unlikely duo.
3. 'Beastly' (2011)
Who's in it? Vanessa Hudgens, Alex Pettyfer, Mary-Kate Olsen
If you really want to turn your brain off and watch a movie starring High School Musical sweetheart Vanessa Hudgens and hunk Alex Pettyfer with some strange squiggles drawn on his face, 2011's Beastly is the right choice for you.
When privileged and mean-spirited Kyle Kingson is cursed with all the things he despises — in particular, being aggressively unattractive — he must find true love to get his old life back. Although the movie is relatively poor by IMDB standards, if anything, Mary-Kate Olsen's deranged performance as an evil Goth witch makes this bizarre modern-take on the traditional story an absolute must-see.
4. 'Cinderella' (2015)
- Who's in it? Lily James, Cate Blanchett, Richard Madden
Although there's no beauty/beast comparison in Cinderella, the #Disney live-action is a wonderful follow-up to watch after 2017's offering as a representation of what the House of Mouse can really do.
Taking the traditional story of Cinders and her journey to the ball with a little help from a Fairy Godmother, the Kenneth Branagh feature wowed audiences all over the world when it first came out in 2015.
5. 'King Kong' (1933)
- Who's in it? Fay Wray, Robert Armstrong, Bruce Cabot
Go back in time to 1933 to the perfect monster movie — one that is currently experiencing a burst of attention once again with the recent release of Kong Skull Island. Released decades ago, King Kong became the movie that kickstarted the epic MonsterVerse we know and love today, an honor that also marks it out as one of the greatest horror films of all time.
The tale tells of a giant ape who dies in attempts to save a beautiful damsel in distress, followed by perhaps one of the most famous lines in cinema: "It wasn’t the airplanes. It was beauty killed the beast."
6. 'Twilight' (2011)
- Who's in it? Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson, Taylor Lautner
If you stop to think about it for a moment, you can actually draw quite a few parallels between Stephanie Meyer's Twilight and Disney's Beauty and the Beast. This is largely due to the fact that it also centers around a young woman who ends up falling for a creature harboring a basic instinct to kill her.
Just like the Beast, Robert Pattinson's Edward Cullen is incredibly possessive, stalking and controlling his prey until she essentially decides to abandon everything she knows, falls in love with him and fully immerses herself in his supernatural way of life (i.e. by becoming a vampire herself.)
7. 'The Hunchback Of Notre Dame' (1996)
- Who's in it? Demi Moore, Jason Alexander, Tom Hulce
In 1996's The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Victor Hugo's infamous tale comes alive and tells the story of a deformed bell-ringer's struggles to integrate with society. Following a chance meeting with a lowly gypsy girl, he finally finds something to live for, offering his friendship and affection in whichever way he can.
Often considered to be one of the studio's darkest films, it brings together two unlikely heroes, showing audiences that looks don't matter when it comes to true companionship. Just like in Beauty and the Beast, the story teaches the importance of accepting others for who they are.
8. 'The Toxic Avenger' (1984)
- Who's in it? Andree Maranda, Mitch Cohen, Jennifer Babtist
Finally, '80s offering The Toxic Avenger follows a similar trajectory to Beauty and the Beast, albeit with an injection of absolute madness and a much, much lower budget.
The movie is all about the transformation of a scrawny janitor into a monstrous creature after he tragically collides with a vat of toxic waste. However, when he falls for Sarah — who is blind — he finds a way to look past his own deformities.
Which movies like Beauty and the Beast will you be watching next?