[SPOILER ALERT?] Beauty and the Beast – EVERMORE

This is the solo post about the song Evermore from Beauty and the Beast new live action movie that I was talking about in my last post about this movie. I thought that this song definitely deserve a post of its own, so here it is. This post is also my meager attempt at trying to post again after that shameful several days hiatus from my last post. I don’t know, maybe I will be on and off-ing again from this blog at least until I have sorted all of my life out (and when is that, I ask myself?). Here goes!EVERMORE

Lyrics from “Beauty and the Beast”
Performed by Josh Groban
Music and lyrics by Alan Menken and Tim Rice

I was the one who had it all
I was the master of my fate
I never needed anybody in my life
I learned the truth too late

I’ll never shake away the pain
I close my eyes but she’s still there
I let her steal into my melancholy heart
It’s more than I can bear

Now I know she’ll never leave me
Even as she runs away
She will still torment me, calm me, hurt me
Move me, come what may

Wasting in my lonely tower
Waiting by an open door
I’ll fool myself she’ll walk right in
And be with me for evermore

I rage against the trials of love
I curse the fading of the light
Though she’s already flown so far beyond my reach
She’s never out of sight

Now I know she’ll never leave me
Even as she fades from view
She will still inpire me, be a part of
Everything I do

Wasting in my lonely tower
Waiting by an open door
I’ll fool myself she’ll walk right in
And as the long, long nights begin
I’ll think of all that might have been
Waiting here for evermore!

Lyrics : http://www.disneyclips.com/lyrics/evermore.html

So, that new song in the Beauty and the Beast live action movie is made by Alan Menken, again. He has given us so many hit and memorable songs throughout our (my) childhood that I just can’t picture a Disney’s movie without his songs to make everything better. And I specifically want to write about this song because this is that one song about someone who pines for their loved ones, but this song is meant to be sung by a guy.

Usually in Disney Princess movies, those songs that talks about loneliness, stuck in a tower in the middle of nowhere, waiting for someone to save them, waiting for love to find them, blablabla, you know, the usual stuff, are meant to be sung by the Princess (or the female lead). Because later in the movie, there will be a handsome Prince in a shining armor who will save the Princess from all those things and whisks her away for a better and happier life with him in his castle. But this song, which didn’t exist in the original animated version, is talking about the exact same thing, but it’s sung by the Prince. And who saves this Prince from those things? Belle! Who’s even not a Princess at all. I mean, what did that tell you?

There’s a definite shift from the classical Princess to Belle and it re-defines the balance of roles expected by the society towards men and women in general. Why can’t she be the one to save him from his ‘lonely tower’? Why can’t he be the one who pines over her? And did you notice that in the movie, Belle even threw away her outer skirt and proceeded to ride her horse in order to save Beast? And she can read, she has big dreams, she has ambitions. She wants to be more that just an ordinary woman in her little town. She wants, and I quote, much more than this provincial life. And she actively tries to achieve it constantly by learning new things from the books that she could find. And there shouldn’t be anything wrong with that, right?

That’s why I really love this song (and its counterpart in the musical version : If I Can’t Love Her). It’s the message it brings just by having the supposed-hero singing it in such a hauntingly sad way. The lyrics are those usually attributed to the female characters in the ‘normal’ movies about Princes and Princesses, but this one just defies that supposed ‘rule’.  And I always think that movies, books, songs, etc have those deeper meanings that the creator wants to convey, so it’s up to us, the audience, to decipher that specific message and interpret them. Or we can just watch the movie and be entertained by it. Which one are you?

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