Thursday, 3 April 2014
05:31:53 PM (GMT)
Beauty and the Beast was released to theaters in 1991, marking the character's first
appearance. In the film, book-loving Belle has grown weary of her provincial life.
Ruthlessly pursued by a handsome but arrogant hunter named Gaston, in whom she has no
interest, seeing him for who he truly is. Belle dreams of leaving her conventional
village in favor of adventure. When her inventor father Maurice fails to return home
from a county fair, Belle sets out to find him. Led to a dark, foreboding castle by
her pet horse, Phillipe, she discovers that Maurice has been locked in its dungeon by
a hideous beast. Desperate, Belle begs his captor, the Beast, to set him free,
offering her own freedom in return. On the condition that she stay with him forever,
the Beast sends Maurice home.
The castle's staff of enchanted objects encourage the Beast to treat Belle more like
a guest than a prisoner, giving her permission to roam freely within the castle.
Curious, Belle ignores the Beast's warnings and ventures into the forbidden West
Wing. Infuriated, the Beast orders her to leave and a frightened Belle flees the
castle. While racing home through the snow-covered woods, Belle is attacked by a pack
of hungry wolves. The Beast arrives just in time to fend them off but soon collapses
from his injuries. Too kind to abandon him, Belle brings the Beast back to the castle
where she tends to his wounds and thanks him for saving her. Belle's generosity
touches the Beast, and he begins to develop a more civil manner. Gradually, Belle and
the Beast become friends.
The Beast falls deeply in love with Belle, but doubts that she will ever return his
feelings. With his permission, Belle returns to the village to tend to her ailing
father. Back home, Gaston threatens to put Maurice in the insane asylum if Belle
refuses to marry him, which she does. After proving his existence, Gaston, realizing
Belle has fallen in love with the Beast, leads a mob of angry villagers to storm the
castle, intending to kill him out of jealousy. While the majority of the mob is
fended off by the enchanted objects, Gaston succeeds in finding and attacking the
Beast. A battle ensues on the rooftop between the two, but the Beast, heartbroken by
Belle's departure, has lost the will to fight back. When Belle returns, the Beast's
strength is revived and he retaliates. However, realizing how Belle has changed him,
the Beast refuses to kill Gaston and simply orders him to leave. Belle and the Beast
briefly reunite, but Gaston sneaks up behind him and stabs him in the back, then
losing his balance and falling to his death. Belle helps the Beast to safety, where
he succumbs to his wounds and dies in her arms. Just before the last petal falls from
the enchanted rose, Belle confesses her love for the Beast, which breaks the spell.
The Beast, now a handsome prince, is revived; his enchanted servants transform back
into human beings, and they live happily ever after.