The second animated follow-up to Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, Belle’s Magical World is now available on Special Edition DVD

This one was done a little bit differently than its predecessor from the previous year, “The Enchanted Christmas”.  Instead of one story, we actually have four separate stories here.

“The Word”
In this short story, the word is forgiveness.  It’s a tale of misunderstandings and when (and how) to say “I’m sorry”.

“Fifi’s Folly”
With the fifth anniversary of their first date approaching, Lumiere (with Belle’s assistance) tries to express his feelings (with sincerity) for Fifi in preparation for their upcoming date.  Unfortunately, Fifi overhears Lumiere practicing and thinks he’s got the hots for Belle.  Fifi tries to make Lumiere jealous, but she is unsuccesful.  She then decides to sabotage the secret date he’s planning (thinking it’s for him and Belle) which causes an accident eventually for Fifi and Lumiere.  Things work out in the end and, under duress, Lumiere is able to finally express his love for Fifi.

“Mrs. Potts’ Party”
Gloomy weather has Mrs. Potts feeling down in the dumps.  Meanwhile, Beast is exhausted and asleep after having been up all night repairing leaks in the castle’s roof.  Belle and some of the enchanted staff decide to plan a party to try and cheer Mrs. Potts up.  There’s some bickering between the kitchen staff over the perfect cake and betweek Cogsworth and Lumiere about the music and flowers for the party.  In the end, the group learns that they must work together to be successful.  The lesson they learned (along with the party the planned) seems to do the trick in cheering Mrs. Potts up!

“Broken Wing”
Beast decides he’d like to have Belle join him for lunch.  Meantime, an injured bird flies in through Belle’s bedroom window.  Belle finally accepts Beast’s invitation to lunch, but only after he asks her nicely (something Mrs. Potts helped him with).  Belle tries to help the injured bird (which Beast doesn’t know about) while it’s on the mend.  Unfortunately, Belle forgets about the lunch date with Beast while she’s tending to the bird.  This infuriates Beast who storms up to Belle’s room and discovers why she missed lunch.  Beast isn’t too fond of birds, and after trying to catch this one, he falls down the castle stairs.  When he comes to, he hears the bird’s singing and decides that it’s the most beautiful thing he’s ever heard.  So much so, that he decides to cage the bird so it can sing for him whenever he wishes.  After realizing (with Belle’s help) that the captive bird won’t sing on command because he hasn’t treated it with respect, Beast has a change of heart and decides to set it free.  He learns through his actions that he has now earned the bird’s trust, and an important lesson.

Overall, I found the stories to be good, with the exception of “The Word”.  Not that forgiveness isn’t an important lesson, but I just felt that the overall story didn’t have the same quality as the other three.  The animation didn’t seem to be as good as the previous Beauty and the Beast releases.  It just didn’t have that “polished” look to it and looked more like typical 80’s TV cartoon animation.

Pro:  Broken down into four stories, so the kids can pick something short to watch if they (or you) don’t have the time to sit through the whole thing.

Con: No Angela Lansbury?  I don’t know the reason why this happened, but it’s always a sad thing when one of the original cast doesn’t return to voice a character they helped make famous.

Bonus Features:

  • Disney’s Sing Me a Story with Belle “What’s Inside Counts”
  • Belle’s Delightful Dinner Game
  • Disney Song Selection
  • Enchanted Environment