A tale as old as time.

Autism / Disney / General


This weekend I got to go and see the new live action Beauty and the Beast.

I have to say I was a little nervous that it wouldn’t live up to my very high expectations as this film, although not my favourite Disney movie was one that was special to me and I remember clearly going to see the original.

This version did not disappoint, not even slightly, it is beautiful, perfectly cast and a musical masterpiece.

I couldn’t help but draw comparisons to the theme of the movie and real life. The Idea of the beast that everyone fears, the need for change and adventure, the desire to break down stereotypes and the preconceived ideas that hold us back and change the paths of our lives.

This new version shows a Belle who is ‘different’ because she’s educated and desires to better herself. She takes her future into her on hands instead of relying on who she would marry to decide her fate. Belle has always been a wonderful role model for girls, the original made me love to read and proud of the fact that I got so lost in books from a very young age. This version encourages my little book worm daughter to keep working hard, educating herself and to not look to anyone else to give her an identity. So yea, ok Belle still gets that princess, fairy tale, happy ever after ending but she didn’t get it cause she was pretty and threw herself at the beast. She showed her true fiery personality and she brought out the prince within the beast because of her kindness and intelligence and determination.


The Story within Beauty and the Beast which I have always loved, is that is makes us look at who truly is the Beast in the picture. Yes at first the prince isn’t a nice person and he deserves his spell. This new version really helps with his backstory and makes us understand why he became the spoilt, narcissistic person who wouldn’t show any compassion to an old lady. As the story moves on we gather more glimmers of who he was and why he was that way. Its a lovely moment when Belle suggests that the staff didn’t deserve to be under the spell and Mrs Potts says ‘Yes we did nothing.. while his father twisted the person he was becoming, we did nothing’ . I love the idea that there is a responsibility in each of us to look out for those we love and when we see them going down an unhappy path that we should not simply do nothing.

Its also so true that Beasts aren’t born they are bred. There was a reason the prince became this way. He wasn’t born spoilt and selfish and yes his life and consequences where a product of his own poor choices but remember that hurt breeds hurt. How many people do we look at and see a modern day ‘beast’ but should be look a little further and see the hurt and wounds that have marked their lives and see that the beast is simply a mask put up as a protection and once that has been removed there is something rather beautiful underneath. (Ok so it unlikely there’s a Dan Stevens, living on your street or on your school run or in your work place, but there could be a fairly decent human being).

I love that by the end of the film both original and live action, we realise that the real beast was living amongst them all the time.  Gaston truly is the one with the beastly attitude and although in the new film it took me longer to truly not like him cause is a little more loveable rouge than villain, his true colours show in the end.

LeFou Sings ‘ There’s a beast running wild there’s no question but I fear the wrong monster’s released.’

How often do we turn on those we don’t understand, on the people are different just cause they scare us. As a society we like things to fit nicely into little boxes and compartments that’s even true of people. It was so easy for Gaston to summon a mob because people fear what they don’t know and fear causes people to do stupid things in order to protect themselves or what they view as protecting themselves.

I couldn’t help but view this through my Autism mummy (and autism wife) eyes. So often people rule out Elijah or Ben  from things because they don’t understand or their afraid of what life looks like from their point of view. For so long kids with Autism have been pushed to the edges of society and not included in a community because people don’t understand and instead of educating themselves on the facts they choose to exclude, attack and even demonise our kids, family members, friends. If instead of listening to the rumours, stereotypes and quite frankly crazy notions. These kids, these adults, these all round amazing human beings who are 100% equal and wonderful can add so much to a community and society. Love and compassion can go a very long way and turn situations right around.


So while we all come away from this truly wonderful cinematic masterpiece lets take a wee look at ourselves, at those we’ve cast out and those who we could reach out to.



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