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The Beauty And The Beast Scene That Went Too Far

Arguably considered one of the greatest Disney movies of all time, "Beauty and the Beast" is truly a sight to behold. The film follows a young girl named Belle (Paige O'Hara), who takes her father's place as prisoner inside a prince-turned-beast's (Robby Benson) castle. Belle soon learns that the Beast is not what he seems, and as they fall in love, he finds his curse breaking.

The first animated picture to be nominated for best picture at the Academy Awards – "UP" and "Toy Story 3" later garnered this honor as well — "Beauty and the Beast" holds its place as a Disney classic with its jaw-dropping animation, unforgettable story, and amazing music.

But however magical Disney is, it's not without its dark and sometimes disturbing moments. "Beauty and the Beast" is no exception, given how gloomy and melancholy the film can be at times, especially with the misery of the Beast's existence and his despair that his curse will never break. Though it is hard to watch the Beast yell at Belle and see wolves nearly devour the heroine, there is one moment that some viewers find particularly distressing despite its importance to the film.

Gaston convinces the villagers to kill the Beast

Near the climax of the film, Belle returns home, and Gaston (Richard White) threatens to send her father to an asylum unless she marries him. Desperate to save Maurice (Rex Everhart), Belle holds out the mirror the Beast had given her, proving that her father had told the truth. Gaston's intentions shift, and he is now determined to kill the Beast. Gaston successfully convinces the villagers to join him on his quest, and they head to the castle with murderous intent.

Aikaterini on LiveJournal explained why "The Mob Song" that follows is disturbing. According to their post, this is when Gaston stops being the harmless, conceited jerk and becomes a dangerous villain. Gaston doesn't let Belle — who has actually interacted with the Beast — tell the villagers the Beast is kind and gentle. He immediately jumps in and plays on their fears, telling them that they and their children are not safe. He's able to incite an entire mob because he knows that he is a celebrity of sorts, and he knows they will listen to him. 

It's hard to see Gaston have this power, and it's even harder to watch how much he enjoys it, as he grins when the villagers start singing about how they must kill the Beast. He is angry and humiliated that Belle rejected him, and this rage inspires him to blackmail Belle and even "murder somebody just because he gets in the way of what Gaston wants," as aikaterini says.

Many commenters agreed with this assessment, with one anonymous poster saying, "It's a bit scary how downright nasty he gets by the end," and another user calling the scene "a reminder that the monsters aren't lurking in the shadows or under the bed but terribly human and part of our world." A happily-ever-after (sans Gaston) arrives in the end — "Beauty and the Beast" is still a Disney film, after all — but clearly, this scene of Gaston's villainy hits a little too close to home for some fans.