Belle starts off her adventure by sacrificing her freedom to save her father. It's second nature to her, which means that she already understands the nature of love. The Beast has to learn how to do the same thing—to let her go free even though he loves her and doesn't have to—before things can be made right. Sacrifice, in Beauty and the Beast, is a pure and clear expression of love: giving yourself for the sake of someone else. It's also the best way these two have to prove that they mean what they say…and maybe get rid of the pesky old curse in the bargain.
Questions About Sacrifice
In what ways do the characters make sacrifices for others? Who are the characters who don't make sacrifices and why?
Is there such a thing as a meaningless sacrifice in this film? If so, which one?
Is Belle making a sacrifice simply by staying in the village with her father? If so, what does that say about her decision to become the Beast's prisoner in the castle?
Chew on This
Sacrifice is the essence of love in this story—the final gesture that someone else means more than yourself.
Sacrifice is only one aspect of the concept of love and, while important, isn't the be-all and end-all.