We’re massive followers of Magnificence and the Beast. Not an enormous shock on condition that we’re millennials who got here of age through the Disney Renaissance. Due to that, we had been actually excited for Enchanted Story of Magnificence and the Beast, the mega E-Ticket trackless darkish experience and accompanying Fantasyland enlargement at Tokyo Disneyland.
Suffice to say, we’ve been ready practically 30 years for the 1991 animated basic to get its personal experience. Sure, there are different sights, just like the reveals at Walt Disney World (two of them!), however Enchanted Story of Magnificence and the Beast is the primary bona fide experience that includes Lumière, Cogsworth, Chip, Mrs. Potts, plus Belle and Beast.
Much more wild is that, by my rely, that is solely the second distinctive experience revolving round any of the Disney Renaissance period movies. The primary got here with the Little Mermaid darkish rides in New Fantasyland at Magic Kingdom and the DCA overhaul a decade in the past–and over twenty years after the film debuted!
In any other case, there are not any actual rides (so no spinners) for Aladdin, The Lion King, Pocahontas, Hunchback of Notre Dame, Hercules, Mulan or Tarzan. So in the event you ever marvel followers our age are salty about all of those newfangled Pixar motion pictures getting attraction after attraction and cloned land after cloned land…there’s your reply!
Earlier than we get began, I do wish to be aware that this might be much less imprecise than our different spoiler-free experience evaluations. Whereas we’re not going to purposefully break any of the wow-moments on this attraction (and there are a pair), there might be pictures of the outside, queue, pre-show, and a number of scenes of Enchanted Story of Magnificence and the Beast.
When you haven’t skilled the attraction but and are merely questioning whether or not it’s price your time, the reply is an emphatic sure. Enchanted Story of Magnificence and the Beast is definitely a high 5 attraction at Tokyo Disneyland and high 10 at Tokyo Disney Resort as a complete. The operative questions are whether or not it’s #1 within the Japan parks and high 5 or 10 on this planet. That’s what this assessment seeks to reply.
Relaxation assured, it’s an excellent to nice experience that’s effectively price your time. And it must be! Enchanted Story of Magnificence and the Beast is the tentpole of a brand new space that value $750 million, making this blockbuster enlargement one of many greatest finances additions to any Disney park wherever, ever.
With that mentioned, there’s solely a lot that may be spoiled right here except you’ve by no means seen the animated basic. At its core, Enchanted Story of Magnificence and the Beast is basically a basic Fantasyland ‘ebook report’ darkish experience, that places you in the midst of a condensed retelling of the film. It’s not like Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance or different sights with unique tales that really shock.
In any case, we do advocate going into any main new attraction realizing as little as potential, however that’s simply us. As a lot as we love the views, it is best to in all probability cease studying in the event you’re heading to Tokyo Disneyland anytime quickly. Go in recent. It’s higher that method. You’ve been warned…
The very first thing you’ll discover upon getting into the Belle’s Village and Fantasy Forest areas of the expanded Fantasyland is Beast’s Fort looming within the distance. That is completely in contrast to the toy fort perched on a fake mountaintop in Magic Kingdom that depends (slightly an excessive amount of!) on pressured perspective to do the heavy lifting.
As an alternative, Imagineering has been given the prospect to create a second fort at Tokyo Disneyland, and they didn’t go up that chance. Beast’s Fort is towering, grandiose, ominous, and imposing unexpectedly. It’s regal, mysterious, and moody–prompting a variety of various reactions and feelings based mostly on you, the climate, and who is aware of what else. It’s additionally one other very seen sign of the distinction between Tokyo Disneyland and Magic Kingdom. Holy cow.
The preshow for Enchanted Story of Magnificence and the Beast takes you right into a foyer with a grand staircase and two balconies overlooking friends. This serves as an introduction for Belle and Beast to 1 one other, and our entry level into their story. It’s additionally vaguely paying homage to Tower of Terror at Tokyo DisneySea, which is a parallel all through the opening acts of the attraction, earlier than the experience correct begins.
A stained-glass window on the high of the grand staircase dispenses with backstory in Japanese, explaining how Beast was as soon as a egocentric prince…yada yada yada...he was cursed together with everybody in his fort. The consequences listed below are easy however partaking, and the narration being in Japanese shouldn’t be a problem in anyway…assuming you’ve seen the film.
There are some sights the place not talking Japanese will certainly detract from the expertise–Tower of Terror or 20,000 Leagues Below the Sea come to thoughts–however this isn’t one among them. You understand the story and songs of Magnificence and the Beast, and between that and the visual-heavy nature of the experience, I think you’re dropping about 5% of the expertise by it being in Japanese as an alternative of English.
Each earlier than and after the pre-show, there’s a major quantity of queue in Enchanted Story of Magnificence and the Beast. Unsurprisingly, that is extremely elaborate and ornate, and residential to some unimaginable results. Lumière, Cogsworth, Chip, Mrs. Potts, Sultan, and others I’m in all probability forgetting all make appearances. Unsurprisingly, they’re lovable.
For all the wow-inducing know-how, a few of the easy sensible results (shadow and light-weight play) and lavish inside design accomplish equal measures of placemaking and storytelling. Suffice to say, the queue for the Enchanted Story of Magnificence and the Beast is basically good–simply high 10 on this planet, maybe high 5.
This terminates, as all sights do, within the load space for the ride-through portion of the Enchanted Story of Magnificence and the Beast. Right here you enter the fort’s kitchen, and are first greeted by the unusual range, Chef Bouche. This space can be fairly industrial, which is becoming for a kitchen…but in addition essential to accommodate the huge teacup experience automobiles.
Every of the experience automobiles for Enchanted Story of Magnificence and the Beast seats 10 friends. To the perfect of my data and recollection, that’s greater than some other trackless darkish experience that Imagineering has created. That makes this an extremely high-capacity attraction, however it additionally means large experience automobiles. Huge experience automobiles dancing with each other in unison means, you guessed it, large present scenes. We’ll circle again to this in a minute.
The primary scene of Enchanted Story of Magnificence and the Beast places you in the midst of the eating room with Belle and Lumiere for “Be Our Visitor,” arguably probably the most memorable and undoubtedly probably the most high-energy music from the film. True to the movie, Belle is seated on the finish of a protracted banquet desk, with singing and dancing dishes throughout the room and the desk, remodeling over the course of the music.
There’s loads happening, and the trackless experience car unquestionably enhances this scene as your teacup spins and dances with the music, conserving you disoriented and redirecting your consideration all through the scene. That’s a very good factor, as Belle isn’t actually doing a lot. All through this, the scene and music unfold round right here–which is in step with the film–however nonetheless a bit odd because the rider’s consideration is certainly on the principle character. That’s a comparatively minor quibble, although, and “Be Our Visitor” is in any other case a extremely well-done scene.
The subsequent scene in Enchanted Story of Magnificence and the Beast takes you from the eating room to outdoor within the snow with Belle and her horse Phillipe; Beast can be there, overlooking from a balcony within the fort. Throughout this scene, the duo (Belle and Beast, not the horse) sing “One thing There.” The vanity right here is that your teacups at the moment are ice-skating across the frozen pond between Belle and Beast.
I actually like this scene…and wish to actually like it. However I believe it overstays its welcome only a tad, and there merely isn’t sufficient of visible curiosity to propel the scene so long as it goes on. For me, this could’ve been an incredible alternative to have the kind of “breakaway” scene that’s frequent in trackless darkish rides, the place every car goes down a separate path. This might help with pacing, create intimacy, and maintain issues recent.
As famous above, the issue is that the teacups are completely large and “One thing There” is a reasonably lengthy music. So having this be a breakaway scene actually would’ve required quite a lot of house. Failing that, I believe placing a tree in the midst of the room (a la Pooh’s Hunny Hunt) or including one thing of visible curiosity may’ve helped a bit. Actually and actually, I hate to complain about present scenes being too lengthy (I really like lengthy sights!), however this drags only a bit.
Following these two longer scenes, your teacup strikes into a few corridors room the place you see Belle and the Beast, and different issues. The largest ‘how did they try this?!’ second of your entire attraction happens right here, so I’m not going to fixate and spoil something.
What I’ll say is that, just like the Little Mermaid darkish experience, the climactic battle of the film is essentially glossed over. That is criticism in a way, I assume, in that the pacing isn’t good. However we additionally need to do not forget that these are sights in an operational theme park atmosphere, and have to enchantment to their goal audiences (households with babies and Japanese friends). I might hazard a guess that Imagineering obtained a directive to make it comfortable and never too scary, as that’s what the native viewers desires. Honest sufficient.
Unsurprisingly, the Enchanted Story of Magnificence and the Beast ends with the ballroom scene. That is one other massive room sequence, however I’d argue that that is the perfect of the bunch.
Not solely is there quite a lot of element to the room itself, however there’s Belle and Beast dancing–plus Mrs. Potts, Chip, Lumiere, Cogsworth, and Featherduster–all modeled on their human look on the finish of the film. I don’t suppose video does this scene justice. There’s quite a lot of visible curiosity that engages and holds your consideration, it’s simply not the principle characters, for probably the most half.
Talking of which, right here’s our full Enchanted Story of Magnificence and the Beast ride-through video:
Within the final a number of years, Imagineering has debuted a slew of trackless darkish rides, so it’s inevitable that comparisons might be made between these and the Enchanted story of Magnificence and the Beast. To that time, potential counterparts embody Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance, Remy’s Ratatouille Journey, and Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway.
With out query, Enchanted Story of Magnificence and the Beast is healthier than the latter two entries on that checklist. To every their very own, however I believe Remy’s Ratatouille Journey is barely okay. Don’t get me fallacious, it’s a pleasant addition to EPCOT, however it leans method too closely on screens and the phantasm is ruined too typically. Runaway Railway is a lot better, however it’s nonetheless not this good. (I’ll take totally dimensional units and Audio Animatronics over screens–even effectively performed ones–any day of the week.)
That leaves Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance, which is tied for the #1 attraction at Walt Disney World and likewise tied for #1 at Disneyland on our semi-objective rankings of the rides in every of these parks. For me, Enchanted Story of Magnificence and the Beast doesn’t measure as much as that prime bar. That’s actually extra about Rise of the Resistance, which I view as a nearly-flawless expertise that just about transcends a typical theme park attraction. Enchanted Story of Magnificence and the Beast is basically good, however it’s extra standard.
The important thing distinction, I believe, is that you just’re truly a part of the motion in Rise of the Resistance. It looks like an journey and is partaking as such all through. With its cavernous rooms, prolonged present scenes, and Audio Animatronics which are sometimes under-animated, Enchanted Story of Magnificence and the Beast feels rather more passive.
With that in thoughts, it’s price contemplating how Enchanted Story of Magnificence and the Beast compares with conventional Fantasyland darkish rides. For me, the obvious comparability isn’t the opposite trackless ones within the worldwide parks (though we’ll get to these). As an alternative, it’s Below the Sea ~ Journey of the Little Mermaid at Magic Kingdom or The Little Mermaid – Ariel’s Undersea Journey at Disney California Journey. (Identical experience, two totally different names for some motive–we’ll simply name them the Little Mermaid darkish experience for simplicity’s sake.)
This was the primary attraction for the final New Fantasyland enlargement, and initially obtained a quite tepid response. Truthfully, I believe it’s barely underrated. Despite the fact that it’s ebook report type, it makes you an energetic participant in a few of the scenes, and options a number of spectacular moments. There are some spots had been corners had been clearly lower, and I’ve all the time puzzled how a lot better it will’ve been with a Tokyo Disneyland finances. Alas.
Properly, I believe we just about have our reply to that with Enchanted Story of Magnificence and the Beast. That is mainly the Little Mermaid darkish experience, however Magnificence and the Beast and with a trackless experience system and with more cash for present scenes and fancy Audio Animatronics.
And you realize what? The upgrades are what makes it. This attraction is such a greater expertise, and is a lot extra spectacular to the purpose that only a few folks would in all probability suppose to check the 2. However they’re fairly related…when you strip away the very issues that outline this experience! 😉
That brings us to the ultimate slew of challengers, that are the trendy Fantasyland type darkish rides: Pooh’s Hunny Hunt and Monsters Inc Trip & Go Search at Tokyo Disneyland, and Mystic Manor at Hong Kong Disneyland. That’s some staunch competitors.
That is extremely subjective, however neither of us would rank Enchanted Story of Magnificence and the Beast above Pooh’s Hunny Hunt or Mystic Manor. Each of these are superior, in our view, because of the way in which they put friends in the midst of the motion, and supply better attraction, intimacy, and persona.
Monsters Trip & Go Search punches above its weight now and is now not fairly as standard because it as soon as was, however we’d contemplate Enchanted Story of Magnificence and the Beast higher. That Pixar darkish experience as soon as made our worldwide high 10 checklist, in order that alone ought to converse to the standard of this.
Whereas wonderful and much more spectacular in locations, Enchanted Story of Magnificence and the Beast arguably feels impersonal and fewer emotionally satisfying. Largely, that’s a results of its scale, which is a tradeoff for it being tremendous excessive capability. You simply by no means really feel fairly ‘lose your self’ and really feel like an energetic participant on this to the diploma you do within the others. To every their very own, although.
We don’t wish to undersell it: Enchanted Story of Magnificence and the Beast is definitely among the best sights in Japan–parks which are already house to lots of the finest rides on earth. Because of its top quality and never being cloned wherever, it’s one of many greatest promoting factors of a visit to Tokyo Disney Resort for an American Disney fan.
This attraction would make our high 10 lists of sights at Tokyo Disney Resort, which can appear to be faint reward given its finances and headliner standing, however remember that there’s quite a lot of competitors. It would even be high 5–we actually ought to sit down and provide you with complete experience rankings for Tokyo Disneyland and DisneySea quickly!
Earlier than we wrap issues up, it may be price sharing some sensible planning information with the intention to beat the prolonged traces. The simplest strategy to expertise Enchanted Story of Magnificence and the Beast goes to be through the ‘Comfortable Entry’ perk that comes with staying at one of many official Disney-branded motels at Tokyo Disney Resort. This will get you into the park quarter-hour earlier than most of the people, which can not appear to be a lot, however is sufficient to do that as a close to walk-on.
You may as well buy Disney Premier Entry, which is Tokyo Disneyland’s model of paid FastPass. When you try this, we’d strongly advocate you do Enchanted Story of Magnificence and the Beast once more by way of the standby line, as what you see in every is totally different.
Lastly, we had nice success merely leaping in line on the finish of the evening–particularly on weekends or chilly evenings. You’ll be able to see our 1-Day Tokyo Disneyland Itinerary for more information and suggestions. No matter you do, don’t merely get into the standby line noon–Enchanted Story of Magnificence and the Beast is the most well-liked experience at Tokyo Disneyland, so even its excessive capability, you’ll be in for an hour-plus wait.
In the end, the Enchanted Story of Magnificence and the Beast is a superb attraction and really grew on us each extra with every repeat experience. It may well drag in locations and suspension of disbelief isn’t all the time good, however there’s additionally a ton to like. I’d truly say the sum of the elements is greater than the entire right here, which can sound crucial–however actually isn’t. Even after 4 or 5 journeys by way of, we had been nonetheless noticing and marveling at new options and results. The re-rideability because of Imagineering’s consideration to element could be very excessive right here.
Don’t let the criticism of this experience assessment idiot you. Enchanted Story of Magnificence and the Beast is worthy of its mega E-Ticket standing and is within the higher echelon of all sights on this planet. The Audio Animatronics are unimaginable, the staging is usually incredible, and there are a number of wonderful results and ‘how did they try this’ moments. Not solely that, however it’s a meaty attraction, with a compelling queue and pre-show, and a prolonged ride-through portion. Imagineering hit a house run with this…simply not a grand slam house run.
Planning a visit to Tokyo Disney Resort? For complete recommendation, the perfect place to start out is our Tokyo Disneyland & DisneySea Journey Planning Information! For extra specifics, our TDR Resort Rankings & Opinions web page covers lodging. Our Restaurant Opinions element the place to dine & snack. To economize on tickets or decide which sort to purchase, learn our Suggestions for Saving Cash publish. Our What to Pack for Disney publish takes a singular take a look at intelligent gadgets to take. Venturing elsewhere in Japan? Seek the advice of our Final Information to Kyoto, Japan and Metropolis Information to Tokyo, Japan.
Have you ever skilled Enchanted Story of Magnificence and the Beast at Tokyo Disneyland? What are your ideas on the attraction–good and unhealthy? The place does this experience rank relative to different trackless darkish rides and next-gen Fantasyland sights? Do you agree or disagree with our assessment? Any questions? Listening to your suggestions—even if you disagree with us—is each attention-grabbing to us and useful to different readers, so please share your ideas beneath within the feedback!