Tokyo's Beauty & the Beast... Better than Ratatouille?

MerlinTheGoat

Well-Known Member
Advertisement
It's massively better than Rat, which in my book isn't a difficult bar at all. Rat ticks a lot of the boxes that I strongly dislike in rides. No animatronics, mostly video based, fairly short, uninteresting setting/scenery (an industrial looking restaurant kitchen isn't something I care to visit in a theme park ride).

That isn't to say BATB is cream of the crop either though. I largely agree with what @tirian and other critics have said in the other thread in the Tokyo section. A lot of it feels disjointed and empty. Rooms are extremely large, yet animatronics are far too sparse and few (per usual with rides built in the post-Sinbad Disney era). Especially in the ballroom finale. The village mob don't physically appear (even Gaston and Lefou don't get figures) and are relegated to a shadow silhouette in a small transitional corridor. It also follows shortly after the "Something There" scene, which is comparatively huge and lengthy despite having sparse scenery and only 3 animatronics.

I liked the Beast transformation. I assume it was done via a simple Pepper's Ghost illusion. Just goes to show that even ancient practical effects can still look great though. The scenes look empty, but at least the walls are competently decorated and don't look blank, unfinished or with exposed mechanical elements like Frozen Ever After and Little Mermaid. While sparse, the animatronics that do appear are of high quality. I appreciate that they don't use facial projection either.

I'd put BATB well above Ratatouille and Mickey, but below Pooh's Hunny Hunt and Mystic Manor (or Efteling's Symbolica ride). It seems like a solid ride. Would have been a welcome addition to WDW's New Fantasyland instead of the garbage they ended up building for BATB. The facade also looks amazing in comparison to the botched forced perspective mountains and ugly miniature castle they used for WDW.
 
Last edited:

gerarar

Well-Known Member
I’m reserving judgement for the “Something There” segment, because like I’ve noted before — there’s about a 30 secs duration to when Belle finishes singing and the other characters resume singing. On top of that, the vehicles stop in place and just pivot and sway. This leads me to think that this particular filmed POV suffered through a holding loop, and thus instrumental music simply played during it. Once the vehicles move again the singing resumes by the other characters. Also the lights kind of dim down and turn back on once it resumes.

This isn’t unprocessed as by ROTR and MMRR also have built in holding loops where either extended versions of the soundtrack for that room play or new recorded audio queues play while the vehicles pause in motion. Won’t be surprised if it’s the same here which is caused by unloading problems, so all the trackless vehicles stall in place.


In the POV video linked in the first post:
11:13 holding loops starts when Belle finishes singing and teacups stop moving
11:48 vehicles resume moving and other characters join in on singing.
 

cookiee_munster

Well-Known Member
On an unrelated note (apologies for the slight thread drift) but after watching the walthough video around the land i noticed that quite a lot of the signage was primarily in English with hardly any Japanese translation underneath/around the text. Is this a new thing the park has started? I'm sure ive seen most rides/attractions with japanese and english text sharing the same plaque. I just thought it was a little odd.
 

Sir_Cliff

Well-Known Member
I think it's an interesting question as to which ride is better.

The assumption, I guess, would be that BatB is obviously better as it is more technologically impressive and on a much larger scale than Ratatouille. Watching the video, though, I do wonder which ride most guests would find more enjoyable. Ratatouille zips along quickly with a conceit of being a rat running through a kitchen that might actually work better as an overall experience than BatB, which features a lot of bobbing around in large rooms to music and seems a bit slow and repetitive.

Ratatouille also feels like a more intimate experience, as most of the little filmed segments involve your vehicle disappearing into a smaller space. The animatronics and effects in BaTB are obviously on a different level to the screen-dependency of Ratatouille. One problem, though, is they seem mostly placed in relatively cavernous rooms which makes the ride seem sparse and the scenes ultimately less enveloping than the best Disney attractions.

As for the location, I'm still very much of the view Ratatouille and its Parisian setting is a far better fit for the France pavilion than this ride.
 

techgeek

Well-Known Member
My initial impressions are not favorable of either attraction, honestly. The look and build quality of Beast is stunning, but at the end of the day it’s a book report ride that doesn’t offer anything to expand upon the story or ‘surprise and delight’. Worse yet, (hold loops aside...) it has horrible pacing from its insistence on holding to film-length versions of the songs but restricting them to single settings. Nothing really happens, aside from the RVs twirling around the room for the 5th time while we’re on the second verse. And in musicals, you simply can’t do a montage number (Something There) without the ‘montage’.

I’m spoiled, perhaps, by Rise of the Resistance and it’s chaotic way of always being on the move through varied physical spaces. There’s a sense of urgency and expectation for what surprises await around the bend. Rat keeps us moving too, even if we’re parked in front of a screen physically, the visual pacing keeps things interesting.

I never thought I’d wind up saying this... but honestly comparing between recent animated ride adaptations Rat, Beast, and Frozen Ever After... Frozen is the stronger ride. It hits the expected notes but doesn’t feel like a rehash of the film. It has interesting physical spaces, makes good use of the ride system, and has strong pacing. I wanted to go on it again, which is one of my strongest measures of ride success (and I’m not a fan of the film itself, nor the sacrilegious decision to sacrifice Maelstrom for it).

Beast... theres ‘something there’, in surface detail at least, and maybe it works better in person... but it just looks to me like a slog through a ‘tale as old as time’ with no new angles to explore.
 

Giss Neric

Well-Known Member
This is a better angle POV where you can see preshow walking Belle more.

In my opinion, they wanted this to be a huge capacity ride by putting 6 gigantic teacups but this resulted in huge underutilized spaces. If they made it at least 4, better. Also I think if they added one to two scenes to prevent dragging too much in one scene, this would be the perfect trackless ride.
 

MisterPenguin

Rumormonger
Premium Member
Original Poster
This is a better angle POV where you can see preshow walking Belle more.

In my opinion, they wanted this to be a huge capacity ride by putting 6 gigantic teacups but this resulted in huge underutilized spaces. If they made it at least 4, better. Also I think if they added one to two scenes to prevent dragging too much in one scene, this would be the perfect trackless ride.

Well, all scenes need to be the same length as one another, else you're held up in one scene waiting for the next to finish.

Or if there is a really long scene, you need two versions of it so as to push incomers alternately into the two rooms.
 

Rider

Well-Known Member
I mean... It's got nice animatronics and some effects. But at the end of the day it's nothing compared to Rise. It feels really old fashioned like something that would have opened ten years ago. Rise took everything to the next level. It is more like an imersive experience than an attraction.

I'm much happier that we got Rise (and Rat and Railway) than BatB.
 
Well, all scenes need to be the same length as one another, else you're held up in one scene waiting for the next to finish.

Or if there is a really long scene, you need two versions of it so as to push incomers alternately into the two rooms.
This is the issue behind the slow pacing. The Be Our Guest scene is extended and arguably rightly so. Very well done imo. The following scenes drag in length as a result. And unfortunately with book report attractions the sequence of scenes becomes very important which hinders flexibility.

The land itself looks terrific. The type of place-making Disney used to produce in the states.
 

Giss Neric

Well-Known Member
Well, all scenes need to be the same length as one another, else you're held up in one scene waiting for the next to finish.

Or if there is a really long scene, you need two versions of it so as to push incomers alternately into the two rooms.
I guess I'm happy that International Disney parks are not upstaging US parks for once as we have the most superior ride (ROTR) right now. We also have the superior screen ride (FOP).

Beauty and the Beast soundtrack is still timeless. I can't help but smile when I hear the songs even though I'm not really that super impressed with the ride.
 

Brer Oswald

Well-Known Member
Better than Rat? Probably. But Rat was the better pick for the France that they have in Epcot.

I don’t even want BatB in Fantasyland. I feel like they would add it and that would be it for FL additions. The last thing we need is another singalong attraction. If I want to singalong to these songs, I can just do it in the washroom.
 

Sir_Cliff

Well-Known Member
Worse yet, (hold loops aside...) it has horrible pacing from its insistence on holding to film-length versions of the songs but restricting them to single settings. Nothing really happens, aside from the RVs twirling around the room for the 5th time while we’re on the second verse. And in musicals, you simply can’t do a montage number (Something There) without the ‘montage’.
I find that choice to go with full-length versions of the songs particularly puzzling. There's part of me that wonders whether they fell too in love with the idea of staging Be Our Guest as an extended extravaganza and that tied them into lingering on all the other songs. Still, you would have thought that Something There, for example, could have been staged as a single scene without it necessarily having to take place in one room. Even that last scene in the ballroom seems to drag as nothing new really happens after you enter; it's just a case of twirling around the room until the song ends.
 

UNCgolf

Well-Known Member
I never thought I’d wind up saying this... but honestly comparing between recent animated ride adaptations Rat, Beast, and Frozen Ever After... Frozen is the stronger ride. It hits the expected notes but doesn’t feel like a rehash of the film. It has interesting physical spaces, makes good use of the ride system, and has strong pacing. I wanted to go on it again, which is one of my strongest measures of ride success (and I’m not a fan of the film itself, nor the sacrilegious decision to sacrifice Maelstrom for it).

This is really surprising to me. I think BatB has some mistakes and could have been significantly better, but I think Frozen Ever After is basically a disaster from start to finish. The only redeeming quality to that ride is the AAs, but the ones in BatB are obviously better. Frozen Ever After feels like you're in a large empty warehouse with a few scattered animatronics. I never felt like I was physically in another location the way BatB at least seems to pull off. I rode it once and can't imagine ever getting on it again unless it was literally walk-on.

As for the actual question at hand -- I think BatB looks like a much better ride than Rat, but I've never been impressed by Rat. I'd consider BatB to be at least one ticket level higher. Rat is a better fit in the World Showcase, but since it's still a pretty terrible fit overall the ride isn't good enough to make it worth it. Not that I think BatB should be there either, though.
 
Last edited:

Magenta Panther

Well-Known Member
This is a better angle POV where you can see preshow walking Belle more.

In my opinion, they wanted this to be a huge capacity ride by putting 6 gigantic teacups but this resulted in huge underutilized spaces. If they made it at least 4, better. Also I think if they added one to two scenes to prevent dragging too much in one scene, this would be the perfect trackless ride.
My god, those AAs of Belle and the Beast in the beginning of the ride are amazing.

And yet some here prefer the Rat ride to this, which, if I'm remembering from what I've seen in videos, is mostly screens. And OBVIOUS screens at that.

As to the choice TDO made about Beast vs. Rat, well, even if we'd gotten Beast, it would have been grossly cut back and cheapened because TDO sucks. No way we'd have gotten the lush, magical Tokyo version. So whatever. WDW is a joke.
 

WondersOfLife

Blink, blink. Breathe, breathe. Day in, day out.
I watched the video and I'm not impressed. It looks a bit boring to me. You're just in a car that's spinning and moving back and forth in large empty rooms. I was fully expecting a huge full out retelling of the story based on that pre-show.

Jesus talk about a let down. Ariel's Undersea Adventure does a better job at retelling the story than this one.
 
Top Bottom