It turns out of course the Beast is a prince under a spell (Marais again, who also plays the brother Avenant) ... there is a marvellous score by George Auric and it all looks spellbinding. One wishes though that Cocteau had found a more alluring, charismatic Beauty, as Josette Day does not register much now. It must have certainly influenced Demy's similar fairy tale PEAU D'ANE where Catherine Deneuve is dressed rather like Beauty and Marais of course plays her father (Demy label). So, yes another French classic we like a lot.
I remember being 17 in 1963 when Cocteau and Edith Piaf died the same weekend, and reading about them in the papers, and I later liked ORPHEE a lot; and visited that Pere Lachaise cemetry in Paris several times in the 70s and 80s, seeing their tombs, as well as Oscar Wilde's, Jim Morrison's and so many others .... its an amazing place.