The other week, the Monash Fairy Tale Salon set off to see the Christophe Gans La Belle et la Bête (2014). It is a scrumptious film and while some found the transformed dogs a little too on the nose and the emotional transformation of the Beast a little undercooked, the visuals were more than enough to delight a fairy tale fan. I particularly loved the giant stone sculptures that were the Beast’s hunting comrades transformed and Beauty’s devotion to her pumpkin patch. As always, the Beast is better as a Beast. It’s always a little disappointing when he becomes a prince again.
There is a lovely, short piece on animal transformation on the Fairy Tale Review site, particularly notable for including female examples.
There is so much cinematic potential in animal transformation and while I’ve loved watching multiple versions of the Beauty and the Beast narrative, I really would love to see filmmakers break out a little.
What about d’Aulnoy’s The White Cat, for instance?
Not only would it be a film beloved of cat people everywhere, but whenever I read about the disembodied hands, I think of Labyrinth (1986), so I can see definite potential!
Not to mention d’Aulnoy’s other transformed Princess, Babiole.