Directed by: Gary Trousdale and Kirk Wise
Starring: Robby Benson, Paige O’Hara, Richard White, Jerry Orbach, Angela Lansbury, David Ogden Stiers, Bradley Michael Pierce, Jesse Corti and Rex Everhart
Distributed by: Walt Disney Pictures
Running time: 84 minutes
Film: 5 out of 5 Stars
Extras: 5 out of 5 Stars
Running of the success of “The Lion King 3D” comes Disney’s latest 3D conversion. I must say that “Beauty and the Beast” has always been one of my favorites in the Disney catalog. The music is just so fun and sweet. I am not sure why Disney did not follow in the footsteps of “The Lion King” and release this 3D version theatrically, since it is just as good if not even a little better in parts for a conversion. Like I said in my review for “The Lion King 3D”, yoy may seem hesitate with 3D conversions recently since every studio are doing it left and right. You also wonder how a film that is almost 20 years old and also being hand drawn animation is going to convert to 3D. Well Disney delivers again a flawless 3D presentation. This film just leaves you wanting more and just proves that Disney knows how to do 3D right and breathes some new amazing detail into this already amazing film.
The presentation on this 3D Blu-ray are just out of this world. If you are fan of Disney even in the slightest then you have obviously seen this film…many…many times. Watching this film on 3D Blu-ray was like I was seeing it for the first time. The detail on the color and pictures were just extraordinary. The ballroom dancing scenes are just the best and so visually vibrant. I think that those were the scenes they even tested the 3D out on to begin with and they are just perfect. Like always Disney provides the best 7.1 surround sound tracks and works so well with the music and songs in the film which are just so magical. If this release isn’t amazing enough it also comes equipped with a special Extended Edition running at 92-minutes along with the included 85-minute theatrical cut.
The special features on the disc are packed as usual since Disney’s extras always aim to pleasure. The first feature is a “Storyreel Picture-in-Picture Experience” where you can view the theatrical cut with a early version of the film that features rough animation, hand-drawn storyboards and other artwork. If you enjoy audio commentary features Producer Don Hahn and co-directors Kirk Wise and Gary Trousdale as they critique the Special Extended Edition. Very interesting commentary and very detailed. The Special Extended Edition offers a “Sing Along Mode” but I am sure everyone knows all of the words already. One of the best features on this set is “Beyond Beauty”, presented in HD and runs almost three hours. It is an interactive, feature-length behind-the-scenes documentary with some amazing bonus content. Also HD fans, we get about 30 minutes of deleted scenes introduced by former Walt Disney Studios chairman Peter Schneider. “Composing a Classic” focuses on composer Alan Menken chatting about the songs and musical score. “Broadway Beginnings” discusses in depth the Broadway adaptation of the film. Jordin Sparks music video for her version of “Beauty and the Beast” is included like in the Diamond Release as well. Kids will surely enjoy “Enchanted Musical Challenge” and “Bonjour – Who Is This?” both interactive games. Rounding down are the classic DVD Bonus Features presented in SD and running just over an hour. Lastly, the sneak previews included on this set are not as good as “The Lion King 3D” and are the same as last year’s “Beauty and the Beast” Blu-ray release.