Rachel SiehsMovie Feedback Beauty and the Beast is a classic love story. A beautiful girl, Belle, feels misunderstoodby her father and community. A handsome prince becomes a beast when he is cast under a spellfor not allowing an angelic witch into his castle during a rainstorm, with the spell only to bebroken if someone falls in love with him, despite him looking like a beast. I chose to watchBeauty and the Beast because I loved this film as a child and I thought it would be fun to watch aDisney filmand diagnose a movie character. I chose Gaston because he is the perfect example of how an individual with NarcissisticPersonality Disorder (NPD) would behave and interact with his environment. Gaston shows anexaggerated sense of self importance, a preoccupation with fantasies of unlimited power, successand ideal love, and a lack of empathy for the feelings over others; all criteria for NarcissisticPersonality Disorder according to the DSM-IV. Gaston believes that Belle should marry him because she is the most beautiful girl intown. He says “She’s the one, the lucky girl I’m going to marry… Here in town theres only she,who is beautiful as me, so Im making plans to woo and marry Belle.” This statement shows thathe believes that he is “special” and unique and can only associate with other special or highstatus individuals, a characteristic of a person with NPD. Throughout the entire movie the audience knows that Belle is uninterested in being withGaston. She knows that he is “rude and conceited” and is indifferent to things that she likes suchas reading. When Gaston surprises Belle with a marriage proposal and wedding despite herprevious signs of indifference, Gaston portrays narcissistic characteristics of entitlement andautomatic compliance with his expectations. Gaston shows arrogant, haughty behaviors by
constantly looking at himself in the mirror (at Belle’s house and at the local tavern) andconstantly is flexing and showing off his muscles to the town’s people (and himself). “No one says “no” to Gaston,” Gaston says after Belle rejects his marriage proposal. Bysaying this, Gaston shows an unwillingness to recognize the feelings of Belle or to understandthat she is an independent person out of his control. Gaston then continues by singing a songabouthimself. In the song he expresses that he was always preoccupied with fantasies abouthaving unlimited power and strength, proving that he has had a pervasive pattern of fantasies ofpossessing such. Gaston shows signs of excessive need for admiration of others by hanging out withLeFou his obese,ugly sidekick. In Gaston’s song, LeFou sings “Every guy hered love to be you,Gaston, even when taking your lumps. Theres no man in town as admired as you, youreeveryones favorite guy. Everyones awed and inspired by you” proving LeFou’s admirationtowards Gaston. Gaston not only requires excessive admiration which is fed by LeFou, but alsointerpersonally exploitative. He takes advantage of LeFou by leaving him out in the snow fordays in order to be a look out for Belle or her father. By throwing Belle’s father into an insane asylum in order to woo Belle, Gaston shows alack of empathy. Gaston believes that by locking up Belle’s father, she will want to marry him inorder to save him. By taking advantage and exploiting Belle’s father, Gaston shows anothercharacteristic of NPD: being interpersonally exploitative to achieve his own ends. Lastly, at the end of the movie Gaston is envious that Belle has fallen in love with theBeast. In order to regain a grandiose sense of self-importance, Gaston seeks admiration of thetown’s people by gathering them all together in a mob-like fashion to kill the beast. Gaston’s
lack of empathy and envious intentions demonstrates that Gaston is only looking out for himselfand desires people to view only him and not anyone else and will manipulate people to achievehis personal ends. Gaston is a perfect example of someone with Narcissistic Personality Disorder. He showsa pervasive pattern of grandiosity in fantasy and behavior, a high need for admiration and lacksempathy for others. He also shows arrogant, haughty behaviors and is interpersonallyexploitative for self-gain, only. His sense of entitlement and excessive need for admiration ispresent through not only his behaviors and thoughts but with those he associates with.
Beauty and the Beast:An Analysis of the Narcissist, Gaston By Rachel Siehs