Retrospective 2015

La Belle et la bête

Die Schöne und die Bestie
Jean Cocteau
FRA 1946
94 min

Jean Cocteau’s sublime adaptation of Mme. Leprince de Beaumont’s fairy-tale masterpiece – in which the pure love of a beautiful girl melts the heart of a feral but gentle beast – is a landmark of motion picture fantasy, with unforgettably romantic performances by Jean Marais and Josette Day. The spectacular visions of enchantment, desire, and death in LA BELLE ET LA BÊTE have become timeless icons of cinematic wonder. “This is one of the most magical of all films. Before the days of computer effects and modern creature makeup, here is a fantasy alive with trick shots and astonishing effects, giving us a Beast who is lonely like a man and misunderstood like an animal. Cocteau, a poet and surrealist, was not making a ‘children’s film’ but was adapting a classic French tale that he felt had a special message after the suffering of World War II: Anyone who has an unhappy childhood may grow up to be a Beast.”(Roger Ebert)

Supporting film: RED HOT RIDING HOOD

  • Jean Marais - Beast/Prince/Avenant
  • Josette Day - Bella
  • Marcel André - Father
  • Mila Parély - Félicie
  • Jean Cocteau based on the fairytale by Jeanne-Marie Leprince de Beaumont
  • Henri Alekan
  • Jacques Carrère
  • Jacques Lebreton
  • Claude Ibéria
  • Georges Auric
  • Christian Bérard
  • Carré
  • Antonio Castillo
  • Marcel Escoffier
35 mm
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