Monday, 4 October 2010

Belle et la Bete (1946) - Film Review

This film starts with a woman called Irena drawing a panther at a local zoo. She throws the drawings at the bin to start over. She misses and catch’s the attention of Oliver Reed. The two get talking and he starts to walk her home. As they walk home Oliver flirts with Irena and she lets him into her home. They become partners and Irena tells Oliver of her fears about the past. She feels that if she kisses Oliver, she will turn into a giant cat. Oliver believes she is just being silly. They later on get married and Irena is sorry that she can’t finalise the wedding because of her fears. After a while Oliver gets fed up and they start to drift apart. Oliver gets close to his work friend, Alice Moore, who tells Oliver that she loves him, ands always has. Irena gets jealous and stalks Alice, trying to scare her and succeeding in doing so, almost like a cat playing with it’s pray. Irena visits the panther again and they key is left in the door to the cage. She takes the keys and takes it back to her apartment. She finds her psychologist there, Dr Louis Judd. He flirts with Irena and she turns into a panther and kills him.  Oliver goes back to the apartment and finds Dr Judd dead. Knowing it to be Irena, he goes looking for her, and finds her body on the floor of the zoo, where she had set the panther free.
I think that film is very interesting as it represents female desire and the beast within her desires. There are times in the film that she acts like a cat subconsciously.  For example she puts her hand in the bird cage and plays around with the frighten bird. It dies, and like a cat feeding a fellow cat. She throws the bird to the panther. She also frightens Alice, just like the bird, like teasing pray. Towards the end, her jealousy over powers her letting the beast within her, take control of her. I feel that this is has not influenced me as my hybridised animal is an insect and unfortunately, has nothing to do with panthers.


  1. A good example of what I DON’T want from a review is this: “I feel that this is has not influenced me as my hybridised animal is an insect and unfortunately, has nothing to do with panthers.” Groan! I’m not showing these films as ‘instruction kits’ – they’re part of a cultural programme that widens out and enriches the thematic subject of the unit. In this sense, your views on the relevance or not to your specific project are unwelcome. Another weakness in your reviewing is that you tend to ‘rewrite’ what happens – the plot – without analyzing or engaging with the film in terms of ‘how’ and ‘why’. I’ve highlighted a number of very good reviews in The Post With The Most that make great use of quotes and balance description with analysis. Go visit and take some notes…

  2. About the presentation of your blog: PLEASE reconsider your font; I think you’re using ‘Impact’ to write in – those huge, bold capital letters – it’s a nightmare to read. Just use something simple and easy on the eye – Arial, for instance. Also, please be consistent; you’ve got multiple fonts happening here, and it’s making your blog appear scrappy and disorganized. I’d like you to visit 2nd year Leo Tsang’s unit 1 blog from last year for an example of what a great ‘creative development’ blog can look like; the brief was a little different then, but the expectation of what a student can produce in 5 weeks was not. Take the time to work backwards through his posts. This is what a creative project at degree level looks like…

  3. There is absolutely no point in putting work into the public sphere that is inadequately presented. Your life drawings etc look grubby, under-exposed, yellowed and unappealing. It always amazes me that students can be happy presenting themselves thus. What I suggest you do is take the time to post-produce your sketches etc. in Photoshop; I’m not talking about re-touching or colouring in – I just mean alter the levels and colour balance to knock out the yellow cast, and bring up the contrasts to add impact to your mark making. For a very clear example of how exciting and bold your drawings can become with just a bit of thought and effort, visit Dan’s drawings at

    and Domantas’s drawings here:

    and Oriskalodes’ work at

    If you’re unsure how to do it, drop a comment on their blogs and get some advice.

  4. There’s not much work here on your hybrid; yes, you’ve got some research pictures of your incredible moth, but there’s no evidence that you’re engaging with the nuts and bolts of getting your ideas off the ground. Remember, when it comes to your final assessment, I’m not marking students on their blogs – I’m marking their ‘creative development’ – i.e. how far they’ve pushed their ideas and the methods by which they’ve done so. Think of it this way, the blog is the empty sketchbook, and the work uploaded to it is the content. Put simply, Conor, you need to make more work, post more work, and self-direct. I know you’re terribly nervous about this ‘big, bad degree’ and you’re worrying about getting stuff right. Worry less – do more! In the coming days, I want to see some big changes on your blog; tidy it up, and show me how you intend to create your self-portrait. Be confident, Conor! You’re a creative guy – make stuff happen!

  5. A general reminder that, alongside everything else you need to have ready for crit day, you also need to submit an offline archive of your creative development blog. There is a way of exporting your blog as PDF via Blogger – which would be ideal for this purpose. Incase you missed the original post, Alan gives details here:

    And finally – now is the time to return to the brief; time and again, students fail to submit what they’ve been asked to produce – and how; usually because they haven’t looked properly at the brief, or haven’t done so since week one. Trust me on this; just take a few minutes with a highlighter pen to identify what is required, when, and how. Remember – non-submissions are dumb!