Review: Disney drama

Christine Hilario, A&E Writer

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“We have no obligation to make history. We have no obligation to make art. We have no obligation to make a statement. To make money is our only objective,” former Disney CEO Michael Eisner once said. This company sentiment has been made more and more evident by the constant live action remakes of Disney classics.

Artistically, it’s pointless to redo something successful unless you can improve upon it, and these live action remakes are actively worse than the originals. Why would I want to watch a version of “Cinderella” or “The Jungle Book” with glaring CGI, unnecessarily added plot elements and no musical numbers? Quality doesn’t matter. It’s all about the money.

If it sounds like I’m being overly cynical and nitpicky, it’s because these films are as well. Disney uses these remakes to “fix” issues people had with the originals, such as where’s Belle’s mother? Are all the dancing plates in “Be Our Guest” sentient? Things like these don’t matter to the overall plot of the story. Addressing them messes up the pacing, and at times even adds more questions.

For example, in “Beauty and the Beast” (2017), Belle and the Beast use the Beast’s magical book of teleportation (which is another ill advised addition in the remake) to teleport to Belle’s childhood home. There they learn that Belle’s mom died of the plague. That’s well and good, but what exactly does this add to the plot? Also, this opens up the questions of why didn’t Maurice tell Belle her mom died of the plague, and why didn’t Belle use the Beast’s magical teleporting book to rescue her father at the end of the movie? The sole reason for addressing this is to make the audience think Disney has “improved” on the original so people will come see the new movie.

Even if you loved the remakes, the main issue is that some man in a business suit thought he could profit off your Disney nostalgia by selling you the same movie they made years ago, only with minor adjustments. And it’s working. “Beauty and the Beast” (2017) made over $1 billion worldwide, and there are 16 other live action adaptations in the works. The classic Disney movies weren’t perfect, but they undeniably made history. The new movies simply have less to offer.

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