5 October, 2012
Is the movie “Beauty and the Beast” a Fairy-Tale?
At some point in our lives we are all charmed by the magic found in fairy tales. Beginning with Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs premiering in 1937, Disney set the standard for fairy tale movies that continue to entertain today. With Snow White’s love and connection with nature, being tricked by a witch, and then saved by a prince, there is no doubt this is a fairy tale. Cinderella seems to be one of the most recognized fairy tales with her fairy godmother, a pumpkin that turns into a carriage, and her marriage to the prince. Sleeping Beauty is another highly recognized fairy tale with an evil fairy that turns into a dragon and then prince charming saves the princess and her kingdom. While all of these movies are fairy tale’s they don’t include all of the same elements. The question becomes, what makes a fairy tale a fairy tale? I argue that the movie Beauty and the Beast is a fairy tale because the characters set out into the world alone, make abrupt physical and emotional changes, and there is death and resurrection involved.
According to Max Luthi, the main character in a fairy tale “breaks away from his home and goes out into the world […] almost always alone” (141). For there to be a story full of magic and wonders, the character will need to go to a place, or many places, they have never been before. This will allow them to meet new people with special powers or objects that will help the main character on his or her journey. Referring back to Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Snow White goes out into the forest and finds the little cottage where the dwarfs live. There she meets the dwarfs where they become friends and take care of each other. In Cinderella she leaves her home with the help of her fairy godmother and goes to the prince’s castle where they fall in love. Then in Sleeping Beauty the prince leaves his castle in search for an...