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PostPosted: Fri Dec 10, 2010 11:01 pm 
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Semaj wrote:
Ugh, triangle boobs drive me nuts! They can put an eye out.

You mean, like...?

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Semaj wrote:
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For the record, Cinderella and Aurora's bangs both make them look sweeter, sexier, and more timeless. I know that I wouldn't want to see Philip or The Grand Duke if they didn't have THEIR bangs.
None of their bangs can compare to Ariel's, whose are almost big enough for a game of peek-a-boo.

If it wasn't for the Philip and Duke references, I would've thought "bangs" was slang for a whole different kind of... physical assets. :lol:

(Or did I read it wrong and it *is*...? Nah, then the Ariel-reference wouldn't be right.)


DisneyFan09 wrote:
Second place comes Ariel. I'm a bit surprised that no'one has mentioned her yet, since she's hated on the Imdb boards. While Ariel had her fun and engaging moments, she was pretty much a shallow, naive and quite selfish girl. She acted like a spoiled little brat and as much as I love "Part of Your World", the lyrics reflects her shallow nature. Sure, her father is overprotective and overracting, but at least he was genuinly concerned for her. In the series, she's more lovable, likeable and actually wise, but in the film she was mostly unlikeable and dumb.

I don't understand this. Of course it's perfectly okay for you to hold this opinion and I'm not going to try to change your mind, but I genuinely, honestly, don't understand this. I don't see Ariel as anything you described her at all. Okay, she was naive for making a deal with Ursuala, the sea-witch. But I don't understand why people would hold that against her. Ariel was only 16 year old, and teenagers do stupid things now and then (tell me about it!). Cinderella and Aurora and such were all that age, too, but they were treated like mini-adults... much like children were treated in the days the fairy tales were written. But Ariel was actually given a personality that reflects true teenage mentality in our day and age. That's why her quest comes across as so authentic; that's why it strucks a chord with so many people.

You say she's selfish and spoiled; you show a lot of understanding for Triton. Of course he wanted to protect his daughter, but he was also very prejudiged toward people, and Ariel challenged him. Not everybody may agree, but I believe challenging and criticizing authority figures is a major, important and essential part of kids growing up. So I would always root for Ariel. I've made a very long post in the appropriate thread (a few months ago) about how Ariel is really the only Disney heroine who thrives all events in the movie because of her own emotional motivations. I think her appeal comes from the fact that she always follows her heart and her most inner desires. I think a lot of people can relate to that; or wish they could do the same...

DisneyFan09 wrote:
And for the rest. I thought Nani in LILO & STITCH could be pretty annoying, because of her voice and serious nature.

Well, she HAD to raise and provide for a little sister after her parents had died in a car crash... I *think* that would be a serious business to most people.

DisneyFan09 wrote:
Otherwise, as much as I like Esmeralda in HUNCHBACK, I must say that she's a somewhat flawed character, since she's causing herself trouble. In fact, she's brought Frollo's hatred (and lust) on herself. Remember in the Topsy Turvy sequence, where she danced to Frollo and put her scarf on him? Sure, it was just a innocent and mischevious flirt, but considering that she knew that he hated gypsies, she should've known better. And the kiss she gave Quasi on the cheek could also been avoiden. She was just flirting with him and obviously had a clue that he liked him.

I don't agree at all. Like you said: Frollo already hated the gypsies. He was already persecuting them, so he didn't really need a reason to go after Esmeralda at all. Her flirting with Frollo was intended to mock him and his ridiculous obsession with her people. Esmeralda knew exactly what she was doing. In flirting with Frollo, she even made him speechless for a moment, which lead to laughter from the public. It was her way to show the people that even Frollo could be silenced. And kissing somebody on the cheeck... does that really mean she's flirting? I've had friends kiss me on the cheeck all the time (FEMALE friends!), just as sign of friendship. In fact, three kisses on the cheecks is a standard way of greeting in The Netherlands among friends. Nothing romantic about that!


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 11, 2010 8:19 am 
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And kissing somebody on the cheeck... does that really mean she's flirting? I've had friends kiss me on the cheeck all the time (FEMALE friends!), just as sign of friendship. In fact, three kisses on the cheecks is a standard way of greeting in The Netherlands among friends. Nothing romantic about that!


True. I'm half Chilean and we kiss each other on the cheek all the time. But Esmeralda kissed Quasi on the cheek to flirt with him, to use her female, flirty nature to convince him to let her visit him.


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BelleGirl wrote:
Lazario wrote:
Belle. I don't think she's classist, perse. I think she's a dolt. And she's a very poor feminist. She doesn't want to be a slave in a provincial town... So instead she becomes a slave in a castle. Big difference.

:roll:

Belle became a slave in a castle because she wanted her father released and so she made an 'exchange' deal with the Beast. A big difference indeed! She sacrificed her freedom for the sake of her father and you call her a 'poor feminist' for that? Even under these circumstances she wasn't a docile slave.

And this coming from the same guy wo defends the cypher Aurora and the movie Sleeping Beauty to death. (note: I do like SB, but I can see the shortcomings in the plot and character presentation) :roll: :wink:

(I don't really want to open a heated debate, just had to give my view. Hence also the 'wink' emoticon at the end)

Well, actually I said that it didn't matter how poor the characterization of Aurora was because the movie wasn't a standard fairy tale. That the real substance of the movie didn't come from the surface story (iz u tryin 2 make meee luk dum? :wink:). Big difference indeed!

But with Beauty and the Beast, the shallow emotions of the film are the substance. They're the only substance. It's a bad live-action musical / soap-opera in an animated period-piece world. And Belle is the biggest joke of all. I contend that she was a superficial buffoon of a character, a not too believable human being, and yeah a lousy feminist. Her whole existence in the film is still as a key to get the Beast what he needs.

Think about it.


Disney Duster wrote:
Lazario, you know, at first I didn't like how Belle put herself in a terrible, terrible position, but actually, that's like gallant knights who sacrifice themselves to save damsels. Still, if you don't like her because you would never do what she did, because maybe you'd come back for him by killing the beast or having an escape plan or some other option, then, indeed, it's still warranted.

Oh no, there are several reasons I don't like her. Almost everything about her that people say makes her a great character are in service to telling us who Gaston is, fitting in to an ensemble song / music number to keep the audience pepped up, and again giving The Beast what he needs. What in the movie does she actually get for herself? Just her and nobody else? The books? The library? Oh sure we hear this and we see books. But how do they actually relate to who she is as a person? Whenever you see her, she's (to quote Tori Amos) "everybody else's girl."


Marce82 wrote:
As for all the attacking of the poor Belle...who happens to be one of my favorites...she isn't a snob at all! She doesn't look down on anyone! I actually love how much of a feminist she is, but without the filmmakers shoving it down our throats. All she says is that what is around her isn't what she wants.

Um... Isn't that exactly what Ariel said too? I think the SONG is what said she wanted something else. What the movie wants is to shove things down our throats. It doesn't care about the person Belle is supposed to be. It just uses her for dance numbers, cutesy comedic interludes with the castle furniture-as-characters, and big dramatic music cues with accompanying predictable cliches.


Marce82 wrote:
she is an independent thinker, and makes a huge sacrifice for someone she loves. And she even stands up to the beast!! Either by rebutting all he says when she is healing his wounds...or even from behind a close door refusing to go to dinner! cmon people...

Well you did notice what character's point of view those scenes were staged from, don't you? The Beast's. It's her movie in the beginning, his movie in the middle, and the end starts with Gaston and then moves to the combination of Cogsworth/Lumiere/Mrs. Potts'. Oh... and when I say it's her movie in the beginning, what I mean is that it's the music's movie first, then the viewpoint switches between Gaston and Maurice.

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 14, 2010 10:34 am 
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Lazario, I don't agree with your 'attack' on Belle and for me it hurts just a little bit because of my nickname... from what Disney figure you think it has been derived? :roll:

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 14, 2010 12:16 pm 
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Semaj wrote:
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For the record, Cinderella and Aurora's bangs both make them look sweeter, sexier, and more timeless. I know that I wouldn't want to see Philip or The Grand Duke if they didn't have THEIR bangs.


None of their bangs can compare to Ariel's, whose are almost big enough for a game of peek-a-boo. :lol:


Bangs aren't really timeless, are they? I would think that a lack of bangs would be more timeless. Banged styles can be easily dated, while with a lack of bangs would be harder to place the time period.

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 14, 2010 12:38 pm 
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Very interesting points, Lazario. I've always felt like a bad Disney fan since I don't like Beauty and the Beast all that much, and academic discussion of it really helps.

Bangs do date very easily; I think they avoided that admirably with Aurora, where it plays up her youth and innocence, but Ariel falls prey to it (and never mind the deliriously eighties wedding dress!). It runs the tendency of making a period woman look too modern, unless, of course, we're dealing with a culture where it is a historical fashion.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 14, 2010 1:16 pm 
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Who cares if bangs or whatever are "dated" or not. If you're smoking hot you'll look good in them regardless and men like me wouldn't give a crap about what's "in" or not, cause all that matter to me is that she pleasing to my eyes and make me want to fap.

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 14, 2010 1:43 pm 
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BelleGirl wrote:
Lazario, I don't agree with your 'attack' on Belle and for me it hurts just a little bit because of my nickname... from what Disney figure you think it has been derived? :roll:

I don't enjoy making people feel bad. I can see you disagree with me. But I disagree with the status quo. And often for them, what they see is enough. So, Disney forcing cutesy elements and music that is meant to make the audience feel that something's really happening... may work on them. But not for me.

If it makes you feel any better, I'm sure Disney were just as neglectful to Jasmine, Nala, and maybe most of the heroines from the 80's to Pocahontas or Hunchback (I don't remember Esmeralda very well). And just because I dislike her doesn't mean I see you the same way I see her. I couldn't; I don't know you.

Hey, Goliath; look at me now!! Now I'm getting replies accusing me of launching personal attacks against people who aren't real. :lol:


eralkfang wrote:
Very interesting points, Lazario. I've always felt like a bad Disney fan since I don't like Beauty and the Beast all that much, and academic discussion of it really helps.

Thank you. The movie is truly-obnoxiously bland. If it weren't for the rather inappropriately (and this as a compliment) sexual "Gaston," nothing about the movie would be the slightest bit amusing.

I don't think people wanted a truly gripping, powerful romantic fantasy drama. They wanted an approximation of one. A Diet-Soda. Or, not to have to sit through all that pesky buildup from cliche to cliche. They just wanted a movie that jumps to the peaks and forgets the valleys.


Super Aurora wrote:
Who cares if bangs or whatever are "dated" or not. If you're smoking hot you'll look good in them regardless and men like me wouldn't give a crap about what's "in" or not, cause all that matter to me is that she pleasing to my eyes and make me want to fap.

You and this guy:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DBA_4cc92Vo#t=52s
really need to meet up.

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 14, 2010 4:53 pm 
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Myself, I don't much care for Jane from Tarzan. I dont enjoy her character, or Minnie Driver's voicework for her. Dull and irritating if im being horribly honest ...


But I do find it hard to search for a 'bad' or 'worst' character in a Disney film, whether it be hero or heroine, as even ar their worst, Disney still have pretty developed characters even in a weak film.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 14, 2010 9:04 pm 
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@ Lazario: everything you said about Belle is aslo true for your great love and admired heroine Aurora. You say Belle is there for the Beast; that she's just a ploy to show what the Beast wants or needs. Then what do you suppose Aurora is? She's a prop on her own movie. What you accuse Belle of being, is *exactly* what Aurora is.

But you have a cheap rethorical trick. You say Sleeping Beauty isn't really about Aurora. As if that's relevant. This thread is about your least favorite female heroins. So we pick apart the heroines, not the movies. But you have a double standard: one for Belle and one for Aurora. If we pick apart Belle, you say the movie is about her. If we pick apart Aurora, you say that's somehow "different", because her movie is not about her. (Thus admitting she's reduced to a prop, which you also challenge, so you argument falls flat either way.) But that distinction is just your personal opinion; or rather it's the last straw you're able to grasp to hide your double standard. It's an artificial seperation to avoid having to admit that everything you said about Belle is also true for Aurora.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 14, 2010 10:06 pm 
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Goliath, I think we have to take into consideration how Aurora and Belle are presented by the films and the usual audience response to the two characters. For instance, let's look at the IMDb summaries for both films, which, since they're not official, show us how people respond to the two heroines.

Quote:
Belle, whose father Maurice is imprisoned by the Beast (really an enchanted Prince), offers herself instead and finds the prince inside the Beast.


Quote:
A snubbed malevolent fairy casts a curse on a princess that only a prince can break, with the help of three good fairies.


Obviously, there's a difference—Aurora isn't even mentioned in the summary of her film! Calling a character a prop isn't a good thing or a bad thing; it's just a… thing. A neutral statement. But when the character you present as and audiences consider to be your main character is a prop for other characters to work off of, that's kind of bad. She should be working off everyone else—contrast this with Tiana or Mulan, who work towards their own goals and whose reactions to situations relate to their overall motivation. Belle's lack of an overall motivation (or, in a worse light, a motivation the film runs roughshod over) is problematic for me—she's constantly reacting without considering an overall endgame. Even Ariel always wants to be human! Aurora can be a prop, being a side character; she needs to get in trouble so the fairies and Philip can save her, thus working off of her. In that case, it can be a good thing.

I don't think we can divorce the heroines and their films—context is important.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 14, 2010 11:06 pm 
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So now we're debating based on some shmuck's description of a movie on IMDb --the same website that lists The Dark Knight as the 6th greatest movie ever made?! Should I :lol: or should I :roll: ?

The movie's title is Sleeping Beauty, for cryin' out loud!


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 15, 2010 10:44 am 
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Goliath wrote:
@ Lazario: everything you said about Belle is aslo true for your great love and admired heroine Aurora. You say Belle is there for the Beast; that she's just a ploy to show what the Beast wants or needs. Then what do you suppose Aurora is? She's a prop on her own movie. What you accuse Belle of being, is *exactly* what Aurora is.

But you have a cheap rethorical trick. You say Sleeping Beauty isn't really about Aurora. As if that's relevant. This thread is about your least favorite female heroins. So we pick apart the heroines, not the movies. But you have a double standard: one for Belle and one for Aurora. If we pick apart Belle, you say the movie is about her. If we pick apart Aurora, you say that's somehow "different", because her movie is not about her. (Thus admitting she's reduced to a prop, which you also challenge, so you argument falls flat either way.) But that distinction is just your personal opinion; or rather it's the last straw you're able to grasp to hide your double standard. It's an artificial seperation to avoid having to admit that everything you said about Belle is also true for Aurora.


I think you have a good point there, Goliath. But I don't think it will convince Lazario.
This comment from Lazario is also hilarious:

Quote:
Hey, Goliath; look at me now!! Now I'm getting replies accusing me of launching personal attacks against people who aren't real.


Maybe Lazario did not notice the inverted commas I put around the word 'attack', precisely because Belle is only a fictional character.

But why than, Lazario do you keep rattling on about Belle being a 'fake feminist'? Of course she is a 'ploy' to the beast and to the story, because it's clear from the beginning what Belle's role is: to break the spell and marry the handsome prince the Beast has become and live happily ever after.
Sure it would be more feminist if she ran away from the Beast, started her own bookstore and became an agent to her inventing father, but how many poeple would like to see that movie?

So, ultimately I think your argument is pointless.

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Super Aurora wrote:
Who cares if bangs or whatever are "dated" or not. If you're smoking hot you'll look good in them regardless...


Oh I agree with you. I just think it is unusual for someone to call bangs "timeless".


Funny though, when I was a kid I thought people who had no bangs ALL looked funny. Then in 8th grade I started growing mine out and suddenly I started appreciating all hair styles. Bangs or not.

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Goliath wrote:
@ Lazario: everything you said about Belle is aslo true for your great love and admired heroine Aurora.

Did I actually say Aurora was a favorite heroine of mine, and not just that Sleeping Beauty is one of my favorite Disney films? If I did, then I probably deserve all this hash. And if I did, it was quite a long time ago. I would like to take your word on it, but it would be far more damaging if you had a quote to rub my face in. I don't see one.


Goliath wrote:
You say Belle is there for the Beast; that she's just a ploy to show what the Beast wants or needs. Then what do you suppose Aurora is? She's a prop on her own movie.

Couldn't the same be said for Phil(l)ip? I've already said that Sleeping Beauty isn't really about the characters, nor the primary emotions you see on the surface. So... I can't disagree with you that the characters aren't that important... Since I actually said that myself. Several times.


Goliath wrote:
What you accuse Belle of being, is *exactly* what Aurora is.

Actually, I believe yet again maybe Phil(l)ip is closer to being this movie's Belle. Especially since he's drawn into the film's supernatural world through his own curiosity and actually has to deliver something of a sentence-long speech to someone else accusing them of being old-fashioned.


Goliath wrote:
But you have a cheap rethorical trick. You say Sleeping Beauty isn't really about Aurora. As if that's relevant.

Hardly- as I said to SuperA about 3 or 4 times just two months ago: Sleeping Beauty is not about what it appears to be on the surface. Check the records, that thread should be on Page 3 or 4 of "Disney Discussion." (Maybe Page 6 or 7- I'll even help you find it if you continue to insist that I'm switching my opinion only now.)


Goliath wrote:
This thread is about your least favorite female heroins. So we pick apart the heroines, not the movies. But you have a double standard: one for Belle and one for Aurora.

Well, that's half-right. In your attempt to bash me, you've accurately pointed out that I can't separate judgment from the characters exclusively from judging the movie. This is Disney, you should remember how I feel about them. I love watching their films. But they are not that good at creating characters outside of the animation itself. I don't believe we can separate the characters from what the movies are doing. If the scenes themselves are about emotional manipulation- that's where the characters will go. They aren't free to move by themselves.


Goliath wrote:
If we pick apart Belle, you say the movie is about her. If we pick apart Aurora, you say that's somehow "different", because her movie is not about her. (Thus admitting she's reduced to a prop, which you also challenge, so you argument falls flat either way.)

Aurora is no more a prop in the movie than every single character is, except The Fairies and Maleficent. I believe Sleeping Beauty is about the powers that create the good and evil which exists in the film's universe. So, as the other characters go through the story, everything they do is mainly to trip off sensors on the gamefield. Which then coincide with provocative shifts in tone / mood.


Goliath wrote:
But that distinction is just your personal opinion; or rather it's the last straw you're able to grasp to hide your double standard. It's an artificial seperation to avoid having to admit that everything you said about Belle is also true for Aurora.

You think you can still say that now, after this post? Good luck.

If your reply has been made up of information you've gathered during our first discussion of Sleeping Beauty, I'd like to think that finally my opinion on the film has begun to make more sense. I admit that over the last two years, I've been trying to piece my thoughts on individual scenes together. I still believe that Aurora showed a great deal of emotion in the crying scene, although the credit goes more to actress Mary Costa.


BelleGirl wrote:
This comment from Lazario is also hilarious:

Quote:
Hey, Goliath; look at me now!! Now I'm getting replies accusing me of launching personal attacks against people who aren't real.

Maybe Lazario did not notice the inverted commas I put around the word 'attack', precisely because Belle is only a fictional character.

I was kidding (hence the laughing smiley)- I thought other people would find it amusing.


BelleGirl wrote:
But why than, Lazario do you keep rattling on about Belle being a 'fake feminist'? Of course she is a 'ploy' to the beast and to the story, because it's clear from the beginning what Belle's role is: to break the spell and marry the handsome prince the Beast has become and live happily ever after. Sure it would be more feminist if she ran away from the Beast, started her own bookstore and became an agent to her inventing father, but how many poeple would like to see that movie?

So, ultimately I think your argument is pointless.

Well, I hope I've set that straight finally in this reply. That I am being critical against the movie's usage of the character. I mean, I can't really go after a character who isn't really a character. I guess people think I'm a bully because when I accuse her of being a lousy feminist, I'm really criticizing the audience for seeing what she does as being a forward step for women. And what she says, I hope you took that into account when reading my replies. If anything, the movie just can't wait until it starts to make her miserable for being probably the most independent person in her town / village. Then, trivializes her suffering for the sake of cutesy scenes of the talking furniture. Finally, she even loses whatever sense of herself she previously had.

But finally, if what I am saying against Belle is pointless... So are any defenses of her. Is that the way you really want this?


Goliath wrote:
So now we're debating based on some shmuck's description of a movie on IMDb --the same website that lists The Dark Knight as the 6th greatest movie ever made?! Should I :lol: or should I :roll: ?

The movie's title is Sleeping Beauty, for cryin' out loud!

Elkafang, Goliath is wonderful isn't he? Always truly listens to what a fellow poster has to say instead of just peeing all over them.

Hey, Goliath- what was that you were saying to me again, about me and how I treat everyone else on the forum?

:roll:

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 15, 2010 3:01 pm 
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But finally, if what I am saying against Belle is pointless... So are any defenses of her. Is that the way you really want this?


Of course this whole discussion is pointless, but it's a fun way to spend time! :D

Maybe you would have liked Belle better if the story had stayed closer to the original fairy-tale. But in that case poeple would complain that the story looked too much like Cinderella. You can't win 'm all.

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BelleGirl wrote:
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But finally, if what I am saying against Belle is pointless... So are any defenses of her. Is that the way you really want this?

Of course this whole discussion is pointless, but it's a fun way to spend time! :D

Oh, I agree. I promise you this isn't me being hostile, I enjoy tearing the movie to shreds when I get the chance. Badness is often hysterically amusing, in the right context.

I told Duster that there were several reasons I disliked Belle. I don't think her voice was well-cast, I didn't like Paige O'Hara's singing. Nothing about her did anything special for me at all. But I could respect her if she seemed to have a real drive for something for herself. The second she starts to go into something personal- she's singing. And I don't like her singing. The song is meant to move you. And I didn't like the music, either. So... I'm rather stuck. Aren't I?

As a matter of fact... I think The Animaniacs did a bit of a parody of this in a Rita & Runt skit that was hilarious. About, of all things, witch hunting in Salem. The last song Rita sings is clearly a spoof on Angela Lansberry's "Beauty and the Beast," to which Runt replies- "I hope we don't get sued." But even further, the entire town looks a bit like BatB's, the townspeople have backup singing parts, and the villain's a bit like Gaston mixed with a pilgrim. "If anyone asks how you got free, tell 'em the cow did it."

Why- would you look at that... ? It's on YouTube! :

<object width="480" height="385"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/6ehw3gollxg?fs=1&hl=en_US"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/6ehw3gollxg?fs=1&hl=en_US" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="480" height="385"></embed></object>

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 15, 2010 8:00 pm 
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BelleGirl wrote:
Maybe Lazario did not notice the inverted commas I put around the word 'attack', precisely because Belle is only a fictional character.

Nah, he just really, really, really likes to have my attention.

BelleGirl wrote:
But why than, Lazario do you keep rattling on about Belle being a 'fake feminist'? Of course she is a 'ploy' to the beast and to the story, because it's clear from the beginning what Belle's role is: to break the spell and marry the handsome prince the Beast has become and live happily ever after. [...]

That's why it's a fairy tale, after all. Like Snow White was, like Cinderella was, and like Sleeping Beauty was. Funny thing is, Lazario has said many times he doesn't take Disney films very seriously --that is, he doesn't see any deeper meanings in them, or any realism, or any depth. But that's okay with him, because he doesn't expect Disney films to be more than entertainment. Then *why* single out Beauty and the Beast to trash it over and over again?

I really have no stake in this argument. I think it's a nice film, but I can name 15 better Disney titles. So whether he wants to trash it or not, is not the deal. I'm just curious to know why he singles out this particular film and blasts it for all the reasons he has said he doesn't care about. And why is Sleeping Beauty different; why is that the *one* Disney film with more depth, more class, more sophistication, while it works the exact same way as most other Disney films?

It doesn't. It's an after-thought. It's a reasoning invented to defend a favorite. Because Lazario can't ever suffice just liking something/someone; he always have to make up artificial arguments to make them look better/more sophisticated than they really are. All when it would have been perfectly okay to say they're just his favorites.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 15, 2010 8:23 pm 
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Concerning Belle, it seems one crucial fact, the way I see it, failed to show up: Belle *is* feminist in the beginning, but her love for her father comes first. Initially wanting an adventurous life free of society's expectations of her. She willingly sacrifices almost all of that and subjects herself to becoming a prisoner of an entirely different caliber, and even then, she doesnt change for the Beast and is not even intimidated by him until he catches her out-of-bounds.

If that's not strength of character, then the republicans will start tossing money in the streets and we'll have all the "change" we need(no pun).

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 15, 2010 11:58 pm 
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ajmrowland wrote:
Concerning Belle, it seems one crucial fact, the way I see it, failed to show up: Belle *is* feminist in the beginning, but her love for her father comes first. Initially wanting an adventurous life free of society's expectations of her. She willingly sacrifices almost all of that and subjects herself to becoming a prisoner of an entirely different caliber, and even then, she doesnt change for the Beast and is not even intimidated by him until he catches her out-of-bounds.

If that's not strength of character, then the republicans will start tossing money in the streets and we'll have all the "change" we need(no pun).


I think this comment shows the most problematic point of Beauty and the Beast—Belle, in "Belle (Reprise)", clearly outlines her motivations and desires.

Quote:
I want adventure in the great wide somewhere
I want it more than I can tell
And for once it might be grand
To have someone understand
I want so much more than they've got planned


And then her motivation changes without particularly being addressed, which has always bothered me. It's been fixed in the stage adaptation with the song "A Change in Me", where Belle explicitly tells her father she no longer wants what she described in "Belle (Reprise)" in favor of the life she now has with Beast. (Weirdly, it wasn't even added until Toni Braxton joined the production; Menken wrote it for her.)

So I think a lot of the problems people, including myself, have with Beauty and the Beast stem from this. I don't like the fact that Belle happily trades the possibility of her "great wide somewhere" for the life she has with Beast, since I find that life poorer than the possibilities she initially has—she and her father are trying to find a way to start a new life for themselves with his new invention. And I wonder if that has to do with Belle's character—would I feel the same if Belle was a girl whose father didn't have the resources that Maurice does (or that Belle thinks he does)? It becomes difficult to construct a Belle where her relationship with the Beast doesn't have a skewed power dynamic, but then we're running into story problems and not character problems.

I don't like Belle because the two traits we are given—her independence and her bookishness—have a tendency turn into classism and a weak excuse for her classism; all the reading we ever hear of Belle doing seems pretty lightweight. (And, as a bookworm, I gotta admit, I'm sick of people assuming Belle is my favorite Disney princess. ;) ) Her slippery, unaddressed motivation is also a problem.


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