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  1. #1. Beauty And The Beast Live Review

Beauty And The Beast Live Review: Stream Or Skip?

Searching for Beauty And The Beast Live review? Here we go! Coco Chanel once famously advised that women take a last glance in the mirror before leaving the house and remove one item of clothing. ABC's latest aired musical could have benefited from keeping it in mind.
Like NBC's "Annie Live!" and Fox's "Rent Live!," "Beauty and the Beast: A 30th Celebration" (Thursday, 8 EST/PST, 12 out of four) is the latest network TV musical theater spectacular, albeit "Beauty" doesn't even try to be live. It's similar to the network's 2019 "Little Mermaid" special in that it features both live-action recreations of moments from the 1991 animated film and interviews with the people behind the scenes and prepared stagings of songs from the classic.

#1. Beauty And The Beast Live Review

Beauty And The Beast Live Review Source: Getty Images
ABC would have had an easier time if they had just picked one direction and not tried to juggle so many different concepts at once. In retrospect, the network should have either put on a live production of the whole musical or rebroadcast the film with deleted sections. Since a Broadway adaptation ran for 13 years, I think it would be worth the cost to stage a full show.
The program is entertaining in spurts, featuring solid performances from Josh Groban as the Beast, H.E.R. as Belle, Martin Short as Lumiere, Shania Twain as Mrs. Potts, Joshua Henry as Gaston, David Alan Grier as Cogsworth, and Rita Moreno as host. It's great when popular artists like H.E.R. or Moreno perform a cover of an old Disney song. However, seeing everything in one place becomes old fast. When the action shifts from animated to live or vice versa, or when we are forced to listen to the performers talk about how much they love the show and each other, whatever momentum produced by one element skids to a halt. That doesn't even compare to the unnaturalness of commercials.

Stream Or Skip?

Beauty And The Beast Live Review
ABC's "Beauty and the Beast: A 30th Celebration" included Martin Short as Lumiere, Shania Twain as Mrs. Potts, Leo Abelo Perry as Chip, and David Alan Grier as Cogsworth.It's safe to assume that ABC and Disney are taking notes after the failure that was their live-action "Mermaid" in 2019. Neither the outfits nor the sets, modeled after traditional animation cels, are skimped here.


Compared to the actors who tackled "Mermaid," this group is stronger as a whole, both in terms of talent and dedication, and in terms of fitting their characters (and as singers) than the cast of the live-action "Beast" picture from 2017, which starred Emma Watson and Dan Stevens. ABC provides skillfully presented renditions of timeless Alan Menken and Howard Ashman melodies to those who seek nothing more.
Outdoors at Disney Studios in Burbank, the opening number "Belle" gets much-needed oxygen. Puppetry and inventive choreography give "Be Our Guest" a fresh take on the iconic song, setting it apart visually and aurally from the countless other renditions that have come before. In a touching moment, Menken sings the title song with Twain. Finally, H.E.R. takes off her trademark eyeglasses and guitar and begins to rock out.
On the other hand, you can always watch the performances at your leisure on YouTube after the special has aired on Disney+ and Hulu this coming Friday. This is because they are buried beneath a mountain of filler, including a beautiful disco ball of Disney nostalgia and bad gags about TikTok. Moreover, the first film is also available to watch on Disney+. You'll find that there's a lot more drama.
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