Suzu is a shy, everyday high school student living in a rural village. For years, she has only been a shadow of herself. But when she enters “U”, a massive virtual world, she escapes into her online persona as Belle, a gorgeous and globally-beloved singer. One day, her concert is interrupted by a monstrous creature chased by vigilantes. As their hunt escalates, Suzu embarks on an emotional and epic quest to uncover the identity of this mysterious “beast” and to discover her true self in a world where you can be anyone.
With “Belle,” anime master Mamoru Hosoda has reimagined “Beauty and the Beast” for the metaverse set — that young generation of social media users who switch identities comfortably between the physical world and a more inviting online one. Roughly half the movie takes place in the “real world” ...