Opening Statement

With Bill Condon’s new live-action adaptation of Beauty in the Beast now in theaters, I imagine most cinemagoers have no idea that it isn’t the first. But for me, Jean Cocteau’s La belle et la bête is the Beauty and the Beast story that is the most cinematic, the most magical, the most romantic. And it doesn’t need a talking candlestick, either – by Aaron Pinkston, March 20, 2017

True Magic of the Modern Fairy Tale

The film succeeds at getting even the most jaded adults to believe in magic for an hour and a half. Rarely has a film taken me away from reality like Beauty and the Beast. Rarely have I believed in magic. Rarely have I left a film feeling so much like a child – by Alex Moore, March 21, 2017

Practical Magic

At its core, though, Beauty and the Beast is pure simplicity. There are no bells or whistles. Its effects are simple by design and by necessity. With no high-tech graphics to assist him, Cocteau manages to create a world that is utterly dreamlike with only trick shots, drool-worthy costuming, and imagination – by Sarah Gorr, March 22, 2017

In Context: Collaboration and Artistic Vision

Escaping the filter of someone else’s documentary lens and instead putting pen to page, Jean Cocteau kept a journal that catalogues the making of Beauty and the Beast. It’s indispensable for its singular insight into the movie-making process. Titled Beauty and the Beast: Diary of a Film, the slim volume deepens one’s appreciation for the movie – by Maddie Freeman, March 22, 2017

A Yearning for the Beast

With Beauty and the Beast, Jean Cocteau found a uniquely personal response to the post-war world. It was a strange time to be making such a stylized, fantastic film, and a particularly brazen act given his own tarnished reputation. France was healing from the occupation and Cocteau was emerging from a period of professional failure – by Kevin Taylor, March 23, 2017

Related Review: Beauty and the Beast [2017]

I must preface this review with saying that Beauty and the Beast is one of my favorite Disney animated films, second only to The Little Mermaid, so I had high hopes for the live-action Disney Beauty and the Beast. Unfortunately, it did not quite live up to my admittedly lofty expectations – by Felicia Elliott, March 24, 2017

The Cinessential Podcast, Ep. 12

The Cinessential Podcast is back to chat about Jean Cocteau's Beauty and the Beast. Topics include: how the practical effects help build its magic, Cocteau's production diary, and the 2017 remake. The crew also scolds John for not watching the film – by The Cinessential, March 27, 2017