My Blu-ray copy of Beauty and the Beast showed up in the mail yesterday .
We actually already own a copy of the DVD, but it’s several years old, wasn’t in widescreen and tended to appear pretty pixelated on the newer tv. So…Blu-ray it was.

It has been probably been at least ten years or more since I really saw it, and it’s actually a little bittersweet to watch it now. Lots of memories dredged up there, for myriad reasons – high school stuff, Germany stuff (I had bought the soundtrack and listened to it quite a bit during a trip to Europe), taking my mother to the theatre to see it, etc.

Even though the computer animation in parts is looking a bit dated, it’s still rather stunning, especially in Hi-Def.

And really, animation aside, it’s all about the story…and that’s held up rather well, especially given how old a tale it actually is.

There’s something rather interesting about the innocent maiden taming the savage beast…or in more modern terms, going for the bad boy –  in the hopes that true love will actually be enough to redeem him in the end.

Plus it’s kind of smexy and full of alpha-maleness. **

Lucy hadn’t seen the movie before, but strangely enough, she seemed to identify more with the Beast than she did with Belle. (And maybe that’s a warning for me?)

She only wanted to know three things. 1) Does Belle marry the Beast at the end? (and you know, they end up dancing together, but I think marriage is sort of assumed…even if it doesn’t happen on screen. Though I remember in the heyday of the movie, there was a bit of controversy as many little girls were rather disappointed by this fact.)

2) Does the curse get broken? (And that took a little explaining as far as the rose petal/love admission thing went. I’m not entirely sure she got it, or why it took an entire movie for it to happen.)

3) Why did the Beast have to change back to a man?  And that *is* a bit interesting. In fact, she didn’t really like him once he became human at all. Although the story is about the breaking of the beast’s curse and accepting inner beauty and all that, it might be a more compelling argument if he didn’t change back and she still chose to stay with him.

I suppose I’ve thought about that before – you could argue I even explore it a little bit in BoD, though it wasn’t necessarily a main plot point…and I haven’t quite given a definitive answer. (Although I’m beginning to wonder if that particular theme actually does have its place through the main story arc in books 2 and 3. At least, it’s starting to shape up that way.)

** For a truly naughty version of B&B, go check out Petals and Thorns by Jeffe.

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