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October 13, 2017

Review of Blade Runner 2049; Battle of the Sexes

by Mike Peros
October 11, 2017

Musonia - Music School and Historic Museum

by Caroline McElroy
October 09, 2017

Believe in Your Body

by Connor Coman
October 06, 2017

Have You Reviewed Your Life Insurance Recently?

by Lillian Appleby
October 05, 2017

Fall Decor for 2017

by Christopher Porikos
October 04, 2017

Inspiration for indie filmmaking…no money…no problem

by Samantha Simmonds-Ronceros
September 29, 2017

Free Horoscopes - October 2017

by Maya White
September 26, 2017

Review of Mother and IT

by Mike Peros
September 25, 2017

Creating an Acting Plan - Part Two

by Fran Montano
September 20, 2017

Get to Know '818 Empire'

by Luckie
September 19, 2017

Time As Activity – David Lamelas and Bernd & Hilda Becher

by Raleigh Barrett
September 13, 2017

A Weekend in the "American Riviera"

by Jack Witt
September 12, 2017

KCON LA 2017 @ The LA Convention Center

by Caroline McElroy
September 11, 2017

What Can a Dollar Buy? Depends on Where You Live

by Lillian Appleby
September 08, 2017

How successful are you?

by Jessie Marcus
September 07, 2017

Six Simple Dating Tips to Call in The One This Fall

by Cristina Morara

Beauties and Beasts: Beauty and the Beast; Kong: Skull Island 

Published in Movie Reviews
"Tale as old as time" nails the complex simplicity of Beauty and the Beast the quintessential story of true love, the most difficult to obtain and sustain.  Disney's adaptation of the fairy tale with its sweepingly imaginative spectacle wins over even the hardest of hearts. The animated film was such a tremendous hit in 1991 that it was adapted for the stage in 1994 with new songs by Tim Rice added to the Academy Award-winning movie score by deceased Howard Ashman. It ran worldwide until 2007 and proves undoubtedly that fairy tales retain a popularity that never dies. The current revival tour of Beauty and the Beast, now at the Pantages until March 27, is every bit as glorious, delectable and elegant as the original.
Director Rob Roth and choreographer Matt West keep the action vibrantly alive from second to second throughout and are supported by a tremendously gifted cast. Liz Shivener makes the spirited Belle a model of perfection, the self-educated provincial girl who understands what it means to be different. Shunned by others because of her solitary preoccupation with books, she is more wise and caring than most girls her age. Justin Glaser as Beast has a magnificent vocal range and essays the strenuous physical role with towering strength. His transition from mean to tender is a delicious experience. Equally physical and vocally adept is Nathaniel Hackmann as Gaston, the comically cartoonish bully who proves the real beast of the evening. His comedic moves are just delightful. Comical characters enthrall us in all Disney productions and none more so than the varied over-the-top characters of all shapes and sizes. Merritt David Janes as Lumiere, Keith Kirkwood as Cogsworth, and Andrew Kruep as Lefou, Gaston's foolish sidekick whose pratfalls occur about every two seconds steal every scene they are in. Equally delightful are Christopher Spencer as Maurice, Belle's inventor father, Sabina Petra as Mrs. Potts, the teapot who sings the tile song so beautifully, Erin Elizabeth Coors as the saucy Babette, and the very funny Jen Bechter as Madame de la Grande Bouche, a chest of drawers quite unlike any you've ever seen.
Scenery by Stanley A. Meyer, costumes by Ann Hould-Ward, lighting design by Natasha Katz and sound by John Petrafesa are all scrumptious and add colorful highlights to the beloved story. Tim Rice's song "If I Can't Love Her" sung by the Beast as the Act I finale is my favorite. Perhaps the most heartbreaking number in the show, it expresses the intense agony he feels to be human again.
It doesn't really take as much strength to defeat an enemy as it does to win him over. Hate is easy; love is the hardest act to follow. Watching Belle work her magic on Beast and experiencing his refinement make Disney's Beauty and the Beast sheer enchantment for children of all ages.
5 out of 5 stars

 

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