When a Girl Meets a Beast
This week we’re continuing with the theme of heroes and heroines. I’ve indicated in previous posts my favorite book and characters are all wrapped up in Pride and Prejudice. So instead of talking about Lizzie and Darcy again, I thought I’d share my favorite hero and heroine from a Disney animated film.
My choices are found in the ever popular Beauty and the Beast—Belle and Beast.
Belle is undoubtedly beautiful on the outside but, as the towns people believe, it’s both “a pity and a sin, she doesn’t quite fit in.” Feeling like an awkward outsider makes her relatable. Everyone has times in their lives when they feel like a visitor from another planet. Belle also has an endearing love for books which is another characteristic many can identify with (especially the bloggers on this site!).
It is her person, however, that helps her live up to her name. She’s self-sacrificing to save her father. Belle teaches that valuable lesson to not judge a book by its cover and becomes the one “who could learn to love a beast.” She has a gracious and gentle spirit, yet possesses spunk that helps her rise to challenges. And in the end, it is Belle who ultimately saves Beast…a role reversal from your typical Disney movie.
Beast on the other hand seems, well, beastly. But over time we watch this character, who starts off as cold and in despair, develop hope and the ability to love. He becomes the hero the audience cheers for and eventually the audience can also see beyond the rough exterior to find the sympathetic soul within.
It is one thing to have a great hero and a great heroine, but there has to be chemistry between them to make the story come alive. And as strange as it may seem, by the end of the movie the audience hopes that the lovely Belle ends up with Beast over the ruggedly handsome, but egotistical, Gaston.
I don’t know about you, but now I have the song track playing in my head about a “tale as old as time”. Maybe I’ll pop in the album while I finish my writing day.