Firsts are always going to be memories that stay with you forever, hopefully. Whether they’re good or bad; like my first time going to the movies. It was good because I saw one of the best Disney movies, but also bad because afterward, I ran straight into a brick wall trying to win a race back to the car. Head injuries aside, ‘Beauty and the Beast’ will always be one of my favorites because it was a first, and this week it represents my Oscar winner crush because I just couldn’t pinpoint a person like this week’s guest, Mekeshia Clayton so I had to go with a whole movie.
‘Beauty and the Beast’ has come up here before as D’Manda Martini dubbed Beast a random crush because it wasn’t so much on the man behind the curse, but the man in Beast-formation. Find out more about why that was so in that early episode. My mom would fully agree with Beast as she too loved him and declared it not too long after we left the movie and it soon became an obsession of mine alongside ‘The Little Mermaid.’
Giving youths a myriad of reasons to be totally enthralled aside, ‘Beauty and the Beast’ managed to impress everyone that year as it became quite the groundbreaking event. It was the first animated film to be nominated for Best Picture at the Oscars. It would take another decade before the Academy decided to give animated movies their own category, but in 1991 ‘Beauty and the Beast’ proved that animated films weren’t just for kids. They were works of art and should be as celebrated as their live-action counterparts.
However, since then only two other animated movies have been nominated for the big one at the Academy Awards; ‘Up’ and ‘Toy Story 3.’ Those nominations came back to back with ‘Up’ losing to ‘The Hurt Locker’ in 2009, and Woody and Co. taking a loss to ‘The King’s Speech.’ The latter is one I will go to my grave disagreeing with. Nevertheless, those two nominations were made possible long ago thanks to ‘Beauty and the Beast’ because if you haven’t seen it by now, um…it’s amazing.
The story does have some major plot holes, like…were all the teacups former children and why the hell did they have that many kids living in this castle? There are more, but every Disney film has them because well, anything is possible in a movie, especially a cartoon. That aside, the animation was remarkable. That ballroom scene with the signature song sung by the late Angela Lansbury still makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside because it’s not only a moment, but it’s also so grandiose. Oh, and the music. “Beauty and the Beast” is one thing, but “Be Our Guest” and all the rest? No crumbs were left.
Disney kickstarted their Renaissance era with ‘The Little Mermaid’ in 1989 and while I do lean a little more towards that movie personally, I can’t deny that the bar was raised with ‘Beauty and the Beast’ and everything that followed for the rest of the decade was held to that standard. This is why it’s hard for anyone to deny that Disney in the ‘90s was all that and a bag of chips.
‘Beauty and the Beast’ was the first movie I saw in theaters, and the opening where it pans to Belle singing in that field, soon enough learning that she’s the little weirdo who likes to read, and the love story intertwined with music you can’t help but sing along to…it’s all why this is still a favorite of mine, and why it’s worthy of being my Oscar winner crush.