Why Do Audiences Love ‘Beauty and the Beast’? Because it’s Sincere

Despite netting over $170 million at the opening weekend box office, Disney’s new live-action remake of Beauty and the Beast, starring Emma Watson and Dan Stevens, received somewhat mixed reviews. Many elite publications’ reviewers thumbed their noses at the film—what do these critics fail to see that audiences do? “There’s nothing particularly outrageous about retelling … Continued

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‘Beauty and the Beast’ is the Greatest Disney Film of All Time

Shortly before Thanksgiving, Entertainment Weekly marked the twenty-fifth anniversary of Disney’s Beauty and the Beast by publishing an interview with actress Angela Lansbury, who voiced the character of Mrs. Potts in the iconic 1991 animated movie. Lansbury, now ninety-one, shared blissful memories of the film’s production and told charming anecdotes about its legacy. To this … Continued

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‘Pete’s Dragon’ and the Power of Faith

It’s an impressive feat. Director David Lowery filmed a live-action remake of Disney’s Pete’s Dragon cartoon, and the finished product stands on its own as a sweet and sincere tale of childhood, imagination, and faith. There’s a kindness and warmth that suffuses the whole movie—much as the tremulous touch of the lost child Pete magically … Continued

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Only a PC Killjoy Could Hate the New ‘Jungle Book’

The Walt Disney Company has long been a creative institution with a penchant for telling family-friendly stories through the mouths of talking (and often, singing) animals. Generations of Americans have grown up with their favorite anthropomorphic characters from such classics as Bambi, The Rescuers, and Ratatouille. One of the most beloved musically driven titles in … Continued

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What I Want My Daughter to Learn from Elsa and Anna

Last month, actress Kristen Bell told an interviewer that she was about to begin recording her role as Anna in Frozen 2, the sequel to Disney’s wildly successful animated movie, Frozen. Upon hearing the news, I wondered how Frozen 2 could possibly meet the standards and expectations set by the original. I also wondered whether Anna would have smaller eyes and a bigger waistline than she did the first … Continued

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The Unfortunate Politics of ‘Zootopia’

The type of stories we tell our children are important. No one, regardless of his or her politics or religious convictions, disputes this. Cultures and corresponding taboos may change, and post-modern intellectual claptrap promoting moral relativism and political correctness may seep into our collective consciousness, but most people, at most times, want to find a … Continued

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Disney Princess Panic

Parents rightfully worry about the culture to which their kids are exposed, from coarse language in music, to sexualized television commercials, to the glorification of bad behavior in sitcoms, reality television, and just about everywhere else. Here’s one thing that no parent worries about: Who speaks more in Disney princess movies, the boy or girl … Continued

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‘Tomorrowland’: Green is the New Boring

There are certain films that sound good on paper, look good in a trailer, but ultimately fall woefully short of their considerable potential. Welcome to Brad Bird’s Tomorrowland! The plot, when simply read aloud, sounds intriguing. Bound by a shared destiny, former boy-genius Frank (George Clooney), jaded by disillusionment, and Casey (Britt Robertson), a bright, … Continued

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