Twenty six years had passed between the release of the animated ‘Beauty and the Beast’ in 1991 and the latest one released in 2017. Watching the latter after becoming a mother, a novelist, a blogger and a Life-leadership Coach was quite an experience. It wasn’t a movie that I watched with my daughter to have some quality one-to-one time. I felt like taking many steps backward and watching the movie from a wider view, an analytical one. My mind started to compare the two versions. I mind mapped Belle’s character and observed closely what she did with the Beast.
What changed between the two versions..
Though there were several changes, four caught my attention:
How can a person be happy without being free? Despite the magical world Belle was experiencing, her freedom came first. When the Beast tried to express his love, she made it clear that she can’t receive it as long as she wasn’t free. Though being in a castle, having all those books, feeling the Beast’s affection, being served and receiving limitless attention from all the castle’s inhabitants, she stayed true to herself knowing that her freedom was what mattered the most. It was fundamental to her happiness.
In order to help the Beast after he was attacked by the wolves she asked him to help her. He had to help himself first to receive help. How fantastic! Exactly like I was taught in Coaching. People must be willing to help themselves or else no real change will take place.
People say bad things when they are angry, you can choose not to listen. Another time ‘How fantastic!’ They do. I do. Most of us do say bad things under anger that in many times we don’t really mean or that we would regret later. Our beloved ones can choose not to listen. We can choose not to listen when people are angry. It’s a choice. We have the freedom of choice.
In eating the soup. She didn’t expect or try to change the Beast completely. She was firm with her freedom and flexible in other matters. She made a compromise not eating in a savage way and finding a way that suited them both.
Books. For many years I thought that this is why I admired Belle. For her love for books which we both share in common. This time I gave it a deeper thought and came out with twenty traits I admired in her, which I will be sharing in another article.
How Belle Tamed the Beast..
Reflecting on my novel, Fabulous Veils, this what Gameela, which means Belle in Arabic, failed to do. Belle and Gameela were normal girls. They weren’t princesses. They both fell in love. While Belle, by staying genuine and real, tamed the Beast and turned him into a prince, Gameela, with her submission, turned the engineer into a Beast…and at a very costly price; losing herself.
‘Beauty and the Beast’ remains my favourite Disney movie, whether animated or not. However, I did like the new version more with the deep messages embedded between the lines.