Be Our 3D Guest
You don’t need to be a rocket scientist or even a student of musical theater to know that Howard Ashman loved food and loved to eat. I mean, he did write the book for a musical about a man-eating plant and title a song Feed Me. Not to mention Maria’s Song (from Smile and about cooking Mexican food), Les Poissons (love to chop and to and serve leetle feesh), Cheese Nips (from Rosewater) and though I doubt any of you have read The Confirmation, let me assure you that there is much discussion of caterers and suicide lunches (aka two chili dogs with everything). But today let’s discuss Be Our Guest. I just went back to reread the lyrics, looking for a perfect example of why the song works so well but pulling a short piece out of such a well-structured song seems wrong. So I went to listen to the album. Same problem. The whole thing works. I guess a personal favorite for me is, “try the grey stuff, it’s delicious, don’t believe me, ask the dishes.” What I find so appealing is the juxtaposition of grey stuff (such a child-like phrase) and delicious (a grown up word) and then the dishes – this is the first time in the film we see where the song is going. It’s just so damn smart and endearing and funny. You probably have your own favorite Be Our Guest moment so feel free to chime in – I’m especially interested in why a particular lyric works for you.
Here’s an excerpt, too, from a great interview with Alan about working on Beauty and the Beast. At around 3:56 he begins discussing the creation of Be Our Guest.
Of course, I’m writing about this today because Disney has just released Beauty and The Beast in 3D. No, I haven’t seen it yet. But if you have and want to weigh in, there’s a great discussion started on Feed Me. Did you love it? Hate it? Did it make a difference in the way you feel about the film or about the songs?
I’ll look forward to hearing from you.