My Take on The Beauty and The Beast Remake

This post contains spoilers so if you don’t want to know, come back later.

I don’t usually write about movies because quite honestly, I don’t watch many movies. I rarely go to theaters and I still haven’t seen Pulp Fiction, Blow, Trainspotting or even Star Wars.  But The Beauty and the Beast opened this weekend, so I made an exception.

Maybe it’s because I’ve watched the original well over a hundred times, but I wasn’t as happy with the result as most people. However, that doesn’t mean I think it’s trash. In fact, there are plenty of things that I love about the movie, but the aspects that irritate me really irritate me. And yet, not one review that I have read has mentioned any of these differences.

In fact, most reviews say that this remake adheres too closely to the original. I find it to be the opposite. But then again, I have a Beauty and the Beast puzzle hanging in my living room, so maybe the differences are a bit more obvious to me.

So let’s start with the good.

The animation. The animation is superb. It can’t be an easy task to recreate an enchanted castle, but the artists manage to bring it to life. The castle is stunning, the characters look as realistic as they possibly can, and the rose is beautiful.

The rose rattle. I love the rose rattle that Belle and the Beast find in her childhood home because, to me, it’s a sign that one day Belle will find herself imprisoned in a castle with a beast whose life is dictated by a wilting rose.

The casting. Luke Evans is a phenomenal Gaston. I have no idea who Luke Evans is, but he nailed it! Emma Watson is more than fitting for Belle. Even the Beast is realistic and engaging.

More backstory. In the remake, we learn about Belle’s mother, the Beast’s father, and the relationship between Gaston and LeFou. My personal favorite addition tells why the people forget about a castle near their village.  I always wondered why no one knew about the castle, and the remake touches on that point. My favorite scene where this is evident is when the villagers storm the castle, and a few of them mention that the castle seems familiar to them. If you know me, then you know that I love anything relating to spiritual signs or past life memories.

The Rose Petals. In the remake, whenever a petal falls, the castle crumbles away, and the servants get closer to becoming antiques. I think it’s a beautiful touch.

And now, the bad, and most of my issues are dealing with books.

No bookstore. In the remake, she goes to the Church to find a book. I understand the point they’re making, but I love that in the original, she gushes about her favorite book to the only person in town who will listen to a strange outcast who loves to read, a bookstore owner. And of course, a few sheep. Maybe they changed this bookstore scene to create the scene with Belle teaching a young girl how to read. If that’s the case, then the sacrifice is admirable.

Gaston persuading Belle. In the original, he comes to Belle’s home, takes off his mud-covered boots and slams his dirty socks on top of her book while ranting about how she will be as a wife to him and mother to their six or seven kids. In the remake, Gaston steps on cabbage in Belle’s garden. Now maybe this is to say that her life as a farm girl is over in pursuit of a new life, I don’t know, but I don’t like it. To a bookworm who cherishes reading over farming, it’s far more offensive and crude to destroy a book than a few heads of cabbage, even though we need food to survive. In the remake, she makes it clear that she isn’t fond of farming, so they really should have stuck to the original scene here.

That library scene. I think it’s lovely that Belle and the Beast share an interest in reading. And I also understand that it’s impossible to recreate that immaculate library. But it isn’t the library’s appearance that bothers me; it’s how he shows it to her. And not one review has mentioned this point. NOT ONE! It’s that library scene that motivated me to write this review.

In the original, the Beast finds himself falling for Belle and therefore he wants to do something special for her. So, with the help of his candlestick friend Lumiere, he decides to give her his library. He leads her to the room and tells her to close her eyes as he pulls open the curtains to reveal the best fictional place in existence, his library.

In the remake, the Beast, in short, says, “yeah this is my library. It’s nice. Whatever. Let’s read this book.” No. Giving her that library was a highly romantic gesture that primarily attracts Belle to the Beast. I guess it has to change due to their shared interest in reading, but I prefer the original where she teaches the Beast how to read, further bringing the two together.

That dress. Trust me, that Wardrobe had plenty of silks, so I don’t know why Belle’s dress is flimsy and cheap. It should be a silky, layered ball gown. My prom dress, which I bought because it reminded me of Belle’s infamous yellow dress, was higher quality than in the remake. And it was only $150 at most, I think. I don’t remember high school well. The point is, Belle should be wearing a far more elaborate gown.

So that’s my take on the remake. I can see why people say it stays faithful to the original, but to me it’s choppy. To me, it feels like they took scenes and lines, then placed them elsewhere for no reason. But then again, The Beauty and the Beast is one of my favorite Disney movies, so maybe I’m simply more observant. Regardless, it’s worth a watch and I will more than likely buy it for my collection when it’s released on DVD.

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Until We Meet Again

Dear All,
As many of you probably don’t know because I rarely use Social Media, I am one of the fifty writers to win the 50 Best Writers You Should Be Reading contest. You can purchase a copy of the book here. This book is a unique compilation of the best essays by some of the best unknown authors of our time.

That said, I wanted to come back to my site and say Thank You to everyone who voted for my essay to win this honor. It means the world to me, and I’m beyond grateful to everyone who has helped me through this journey.

Currently, I am in the process of writing my second book, which I hope people will enjoy. In short, it’s a love story that transcends space and time. It’s a story I’ve been trying to write for a majority of my life, and luckily, most of the pieces have fallen into place for me to begin this project.

However, writing this novel means I will more than likely be off the grid for a few months. So until I come back again, I want to tell everyone who comes here and reads my site Thank You, and I hope this year brings you all that you desire and more.

Everyone deserves to be happy. Everyone deserves to be loved. Be strong. Keep living, keep learning, and keep exploring.

Until we meet again,
Nina

P.S.: If you’re ever curious as to if I’m still alive, check my GoodReads profile. It’s the only Social Media platform I enjoy using.

Why I Remain Single, Even If My Loneliness Begs Me To Settle

I always say that there is one perfect person for everybody. That does not mean I don’t think you can love multiple people within one lifetime, or even at one time, but I believe that there is one person out there who is the perfect complement to your soul.

I have been single for a majority of my twenties. I went on dates with various men, all who seemed to be different. What I found is that each of these men had a quality that I liked, but not the whole package. And if I found someone who I liked, I was not right for them.

It truly is a sad and vicious cycle. But, it’s also why I hold tight on to my belief that there is one man out there who was made specifically for me, and me specifically for him. It’s a majority of the reason that I will always choose years of being alone over settling on a partner. I don’t want to adjust my personality to win the heart of the intelligent man or downplay my passion for a guy who can’t handle it.

And although I feel lonely at times, I remind myself as to why I believe that there is a perfect person for me, and why I should never give up hope and settle for the next best thing. And the best way to remind myself is to take a quick glance at the men I have dated.

I tend to date guys that haven’t finished high school. In truth, I don’t do that on purpose; it’s just my luck of the draw. Most of the time, these guys are stuck in such an old pattern that they can’t see what they have in front of them: a well-educated, independent, and adventurous woman. So, after continually dating high school drop outs, I decided to start dating guys who are well educated.

These well-educated guys didn’t like me because I was too wild in my early years. Granted, I am nowhere near as wild now as I was then, but I still have the qualities of a wild child. I swear too often, which I guess makes me appear as unintelligent. Most of the time, I don’t get a second date with the nerdy guys. I guess my working class upbringing is too undesirable for their idea of a partner.

I tried dating jocks, but I only had luck among the hockey players and soccer players, most who are foreign. I’m not complaining since I’m drawn to European men and their native languages. But the athletes lasted for the few nights it was meant to last, except for the one hockey player that lasted for two years.

The point is that I have dated men from all walks of life. I’ve dated older guys, younger guys, college educated guys, and the never finished high school guys. I have no luck among any of them. And the only reason I can think of is that the Universe only made one of me, and therefore, only made one man who is my other half. A man who is the perfect blend of working class and intelligent. Wild, yet reformed. Strong, but can feel emotions. Passionate and calm. Serious with a sense of humor. A homebody who enjoys seeing the world.

If I can be all of these things, then why wouldn’t they have made another one of these people for me?

The world is vast, and I believe that the Universe must have created a man specifically for me; we just haven’t met yet. They must have created just one who not only has, what I consider, the perfect looks, but also a blended personality, like me.

But if I have to wait a few more years before the Universe blesses me with his presence, then so be it. I will patiently wait for him to arrive, and possibly enjoy others in the meantime, while I continue fulfilling my purpose in this lifetime. And the fact that he hasn’t appeared yet leads me to believe that I have just a bit more life to live before we can be reunited, and I plan to enjoy every minute of the journey. I know that in the end, our reunion will be even more beautiful than I ever could have imagined.

Who To Thank: News Casters

I’m sure we all have our own opinions about news casters, but I’m not talking about political or social commentary here. When I say that we should thank news casters, I’m talking about the ones who report severe weather. The ones who drive to the storm so that they can tell the people in those areas that they’re in potential danger.

I was watching the news a few months ago as they were covering tornado threats in southern Tennessee. I could tell by the way Lisa Patton was talking that several people called to complain about the tornado coverage. She had to apologize multiple times to the viewers about having to postpone normal programming until later in the evening. I find it absurd that people would be upset about missing programming when others in the state fear for their lives.

Sure, southern Tennessee doesn’t affect those in Nashville, but they are still part of the state, and they deserve to know if a spinning vortex of terror is about to destroy their lives. Me, I’m terrified of tornadoes. I grew up in a small house with no basement, and if a tornado were to come through, my family would have some issues. So I will watch tornado coverage all night, even if it isn’t in my area, and hope for the safety of those being affected.

But for those who don’t know much about tornadoes, let me give you a brief lesson. Tornadoes give no warning as to when they will touch down. Meteorologists can look at the radar and see that a storm has the perfect conditions for a tornado. However, tornadoes are sporadic and won’t necessarily touchdown even though the conditions are right. They may touch down minutes or hours later. And if you’re one of the unlucky ones, you have no warning because you’re the first town hit.

So with little to no way of knowing as to when a tornado will form from a thunderstorm, the only way to truly know is to send people into the storm to report back to the public. And these brave souls deserve all the credit in the world. Personally, I try my best to steer clear of tornadoes. But I am beyond grateful for the people who drive into the storm because they’re the ones saving lives.

I highly recommend that everyone watches the video below because it perfectly sums up how I feel about the situation.

3 Reasons You Should Never Tell A Friend She’s Settling In A Relationship

This article appears on Elite Daily.

It’s not uncommon for most people to settle on a partner.

We live in a society in which finding a partner is more important than accomplishing our own life goals. The majority of us want the house and kids before we fulfill our own dreams.

Now, I’m not saying that every person on the planet thinks this way, but I think it’s quite obvious that many of us are searching for our future spouses without setting any type of real standards.

Personally, I think people settle because they’re afraid of being alone, but  I’m not the spokesman for the world.  But, if you’re like me, then you’ve seen multiple friends settle on a partner because they want someone, not “the one” in their lives.

Well, if I learned anything from standing by the sidelines and watching my friends settle, it’s that you should never tell your friend that they’re actually settling.

Here are three reasons why you should keep it to yourself.

1. They probably won’t listen.

Most people, even when they ask for advice, don’t want to hear it. They will ask if they should stay with someone, and if you’re honest and tell them they can probably do better, they will tell you that you’re wrong.

And in a sense, you may be wrong because you don’t understand their relationship. However, as an outsider looking in, you may have a better perspective and see things that they can’t.

But that doesn’t mean you should waste your energy trying to prevent them from making a mistake. People learn from making mistakes, and if your friend wants to spend however many years in a dead-end relationship, only they can make that decision.

2. They will probably get mad at you.

A majority of people hate being criticized, which is pretty natural. It doesn’t matter if it relates to our relationships or ourselves in general; we hate being told we’re doing something wrong.

Regardless, we usually don’t like accepting unsolicited criticism, especially from our closest friends.

So if you don;t want to lose your friend, don’t tell them what they should or shouldn’t do in their relationship. They will figure out they’ve settled on their own. You just have to give them time to do so.

3. You’ll more than likely be insulted.

When someone criticizes your relationship, it can be really hard not to get defensive.

If you’re single and you tell your friend they’re settling, be prepared to hear something like, “Well you’re just jealous because you can’t find a man.” If you’re in a relationship and you tell your friend that they’re settling, it will probably come out as “Oh, because your relationship is so perfect, you think you know everything about mine?”

Either way, there is a high chance that there will be insults thrown your way if you attempt to tell a friend their current relationship may not be best for them.

However, most people don’t want to hear the truth. And something we need to remember is that most people have to make these types of mistakes on their own, even if they ask you for advice.

So, if you see your friend settling, I think it would be best to let them figure that out on their own, especially if you truly value the friendship. One day, they’ll figure it out.

 

I Haven’t Traveled In Years

I used to travel the world. I loved seeing the new sights, the old architecture, the different cultures, and enjoying the people.

I used to be fearless. I went after my goals with blind optimism. And I lived out quite a few of my dreams.

I used to be outgoing. I was even considered a social butterfly by all of my college peers.

I used to think I was meant for someone special and unique, someone appreciated for contributing some art to the world, as I would do the same.

I used to be a hopeless romantic who lived happily in the lonely present.

You used to be my light at the end of the tunnel.

Until you tore me down and constructed me to be dependent on you. And I obliged.

Unfortunately for you, I’m too independent. Luckily for me, I saw through the illusion.

You are dark masquerading as light. And you wanted nothing more than to destroy my beliefs, trust, and faith in my Gods and within myself.

And you won.

I may have no fight left, not today. I may not regain any spark for a while. But one thing I do know is that my roots run too deep for you to conquer me entirely.

And although I can’t seem to get my pure self back, and I can’t be that brave and open woman that I once was, I will fight until I find that taste for life and adventure again.

I may not feel it yet, and I may not ever find it soon. But there will be a day when my inner light will shine again without your interference.

6 Thoughts You Have When You’re Single All Throughout College

This article appears on Elite Daily.

Being a single woman in college is by no means easy. Everyone around you is pairing off while you fill your days with homework. I was single all throughout college, and it was at times painful, annoying and even depressing. But I kept reminding myself that finding a career post graduation is far more important than finding my soulmate. But, it’s still not easy being a single woman in college, especially when you’re the only single one out of all of your friends.

That said, here are six thoughts you have as a single woman in college.

1. Oh gosh, I’m going to be single forever.

This thought was always the first to cross my mind, but it’s not the truth. It may seem that way now, but in reality, you’re establishing a foundation for yourself that you can use for the rest of your life. And when your foundation is stable enough, someone you will want to date will appear.

2. How am I the only one who is single?

Although most of your friends are paired off doesn’t mean that you’re the only one who’s single. In truth, there are plenty of single people in college; you just need to find them by going out and expanding your horizons. In the long run, you will have far more adventures than those who already settled on someone.

3. Will my girlfriends still want to party with me even though they all have boyfriends?

College is the time when we’re meant to go out, party, make mistakes, and have fun. And when all of your friends are in relationships, you may worry that they won’t want to go out anymore. Here is some good news for you, they probably will. College students love to party, and you may have to deal with their significant other at the bar, but for the most part, there won’t be much of a damper on the partying.

4. These four years of loneliness better pay off with an excellent career.

When you’re single and surrounded by couples, you may feel some loneliness, but you remember that you’re still single for your personal reasons. More often than not, relationships are a distraction for what we should be doing. Choosing to be single in college may be a bit lonely, but just keep telling yourself that you will find a job out of college because you were able to put most of your time and effort into your studies and your future and not into another person.

5. Well, at least I can still have sex while focusing on my studies.

I always thought that most people paired off in college because they found someone for sex. But when you’re single, you know that getting laid, especially in college, is an incredibly easy task. A majority of college students understand that college is the time to get out those sexual fantasies. So when you’re single, you have far more opportunities to explore yourself and others out there. It helps make up for the fact that you don’t have a significant other.

6. I must be getting someone super spectacular.

This last thought is something that I told myself for several years. As stated earlier, I was single all throughout college. It was my choice. I knew that no one had what I wanted in a significant other, but they had enough to give me pleasure. So even though I was alone, and I wanted to cry on someone’s shoulder during rough times, I knew that I was single because there was someone perfect waiting for me. But I also knew that I wouldn’t meet him until after I built my foundation. I told myself to wait until I have a career, and then I will find an established partner to enjoy later in life. And it’s the truth. After all, the best relationships happen between two people with stable foundations and their personal sense of identity.

Being single in college is one of the most challenging experiences. Whenever your friend does poorly on an exam, they can call their boyfriend and cry on his shoulder. Whenever you have something far more dramatic happen in your life, you need to rely on yourself for comfort and security. But being single in college will make you stronger than most. While everyone has someone to lean on, you are relying on yourself. When everyone else is concentrating on their future with their significant other, you’re establishing a name for yourself. You have so much information to absorb in college, and most of the time, it’s best to try and understand that information without relying on someone else for comfort. And although it can be a sad and lonely journey, just remember there are bars, parties, and experiences everywhere for you to enjoy during the best four years of your life.