Thursday, July 21, 2016

Tale As Old As Time

Belle.  She is my favorite Disney Princess.  She far outranks Cinderella, Ariel, Mulan, or Rapunzel.  And, yes, whenever I indulge in one of those online quizzes that ask me about my Disney Princess alter ego, I get Belle.  Shocking.  She loves to read.  She’s a bit quirky--but in an endearing way.  And, she looks adorable in her starched white apron.  She also shows herself to be stubborn, persistent, but yet adaptable.  Let’s not taint things with a psychological analysis of the Kidnapper Syndrome--let me just enjoy my talking candlesticks and dancing plates, okay? Oui.

So, Mini-Hooper recently informed me that a live action remake of Beauty and the Beast will open in March 2017.  And, frankly, the teaser brings a tear to my eye and chill-bumps to my arms.  Those opening notes bring back wonderful memories of my favorite Disney classic, bar none.  I don’t know what it was about Belle, Gaston, Eric, and Mrs. Potts; but, they are burned on my brain.  And imprinted on my heart.

When asked to envision my “dream home”, I can’t help but picture the exquisite library that is bequeathed to Belle by the Beast.  On my mental bucket list is the opportunity to glide across multi-story, antiqued wooden shelves on a flying ladder, of sorts.  Yes, some people want to ride Verruckt, I just want to zoom across wooden scaffolds of leather-bound books.   Twirly cobalt blue dress not included but preferred.

The “Be Our Guest” sequence is an animated masterpiece, full of showmanship (or is it show-fork-ship) and whimsy.  Lumiere is the Maurice Chevalier of emcees and Cogsworth, the best of high-brow butlers.  And, then there’s Mrs. Potts and Chip.  Happy place. Sigh. "Do I have still have to sleep in the cupboard?".

Perhaps, it’s because Belle looks beyond the brusque exterior and sees something more.  She sees a tenderness, long suppressed by a world that judges what is on the inside by what they see on the outside.  Indeed, Eric (Beast) is cursed for such a judgment, as we learn in the opening narration.

Belle isn’t perfect.  She is sometimes obstinate, impulsive, and frankly goes nosing around where she doesn’t belong.  I may have been one of the few who felt that Beast’s outrage at her invasion of his private space, “the forbidden fruit” one might say, was justified.  But, her heart is true and she loves deeply.  

And, in case you were wondering, unlike Gaston, I don't use antlers in all of my decorating.

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