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Essential Art House: Beauty and the Beast

Josette Day  Actor Jean Marais  Actor Mila Parély  Actor Nane Germon  Actor Michel Auclair  Actor Marcel André  Actor

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Essential Art House: Beauty and the Beast

UPC: 715515032728

Studio: Criterion

Summary: Jean Cocteau's adaptation of Beauty and the Beast (originally released in France as La Belle et la Bęte) stars Josette Day as Beauty and Jean Marais as the Beast. When a merchant (Marcel André) is told that he must die for picking a rose from the Beast's garden, his courageous daughter (Day) offers to go back to the Beast in her father's place. The Beast falls in love with her and proposes marriage on a nightly basis; she refuses, having pledged her troth to a handsome prince (also played by Marais). Eventually, however, she is drawn to the repellent but strangely fascinating Beast, who tests her fidelity by giving her a key, telling her that if she doesn't return it to him by a specific time, he will die of grief. The film features a musical score by Georges Auric. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

Category: Fantasy

Awards: Prix Louis-Delluc – French Film Critics Circle International Grand Prix For Best Musical Score – Cannes Film Festival

Essential Art House: Beauty and the Beast

Format: DVD

Release Date: 09/09/2008

Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1 Pre-1954 Standard

Audio: DD1 Dolby Digital Mono

Runtime: 93 Minutes

Sides: 1

Number of Discs: 1

Language(s) French

Subtitles: English

Region: USA & territories, Canada

Chapters: Disc #1 -- Essental Art House: Beauty and the Beast
1. Once Upon a Time [3:22]
2. Wicked Sisters [3:53]
3. La Belle [3:48]
4. Enchanted Forest [5:33]
5. La Béte [8:33]
6. The Price of a Rose [2:22]
7. Beauty Meets Beast [8:55]
8. A Strange Proposal [3:50]
9. Observations [5:07]
10. A Broken Heart [10:35]
11. Stripped of Everything [1:32]
12. Belle's Promise [4:41]
13. A Tearful Reunion [2:31]
14. Riches to Rags [4:11]
15. Old Ways Anew [7:57]
16. The Sisters Revenge [3:27]
17. Mirror Images [4:39]
18. Closing In [2:50]
19. Miracles [5:31]
1. Color Bars [:00]

Mark Pittillo

Jean Cocteau's most popular film, this 1946 masterpiece is perhaps the most faithful of the many film versions of the 1756 fairy tale written by Jeanne-Marie Leprince de Beaumont. Though the ending is a bit on the strange side -- the Beast morphs into a prince who looks exactly like Belle's hapless suitor, and her disappointment is unmistakable -- the film features tight, economical storytelling and enough visual fireworks (including many stunningly executed optical effects) to enrapture viewers from beginning to end. The actors are uniformly wonderful; Josette Day makes a stunning Belle, and Cocteau regular Jean Marais excels in a triple role that includes the magnificent Beast. The real stars of the film, though, are Cocteau himself, who gives the film a shimmering, romantic look, and the brilliant costume and set design. The Beast's makeup, in particular, works beautifully; it's just realistic enough to be convincing, while allowing Marais to emote through his eyes and subtle facial tics. The unforgettable sets, which include human-arm candelabras and moving statues, are a marvel of impressionistic romanticism, filled with symbolism that hints at the story's darker implications. Forget Disney -- this is the closest anyone's come to capturing the essence of a fairy tale on film. ~ Mark Pittillo, Rovi

Cast and Crew: Georges Auric  Composer (Music Score) 
Jean Cocteau  Director 
Jean Cocteau  Screenwriter 
André Paulve  Producer 
Josette Day  Actor 
Jean Marais  Actor 
Mila Parély  Actor 
Nane Germon  Actor 
Michel Auclair  Actor 
Marcel André  Actor 
Raoul Marco  Actor 
Georges Auric  Actor 
Jean Cocteau  Actor 

Country: France