The great thing about movie remakes is that the filmmakers get to go back and repair all the plot holes that accidentally ended up in the original. The new Beauty and the Beast is no exception—it fixes a bunch found in its 1991 predecessor. But in doing so, the film may have accidentally created a NEW plot hole...or not, if you believe a wild new fan theory making the rounds this week.
The biggest plot hole in the original movie was pretty glaring: The people in Belle's village somehow were completely unaware of the Beast's castl —an enormous royal structure looming right next to their town—until Belle ended up captive there.
The new movie patches this up with a quick little detail. We learn that the enchantress cursed the townspeople, too, causing them to forget that the prince, the castle, and its inhabitants ever existed. Simple!
Except this change seemed to open up a whole new incongruity in the story. Under the years-long curse, the Beast and his servants didn't age. As an example, look at Chip: He's still a young child when he regains his human form at the end of the movie.
Fair enough, but the weird thing is that people outside the castle didn't seem to age, either. For instance, when Mrs. Potts changes back from a teapot to be reunited with Mr. Potts from the village, both spouses look to be about the same age as one another. How could that be?
A theory from Reddit user Hainted seeks to explain everything:
"The village of Villaneuve is caught in the Enchantress' curse as well," Hainted wrote. In other words, the enchantress didn't just erase memories of the prince and his castle; she also "locked the village in a time loop." In a nutshell, nobody ages because they live the same day over and over again.
If you think about it, the theory kind of makes sense. Why is Belle able to breeze through the village's crowded marketplace without looking? Because she already knows exactly what everyone is going to do. Belle even remarks that the town baker always has the same goods.
According to the theory, Belle and her father, Maurice, are exempt from the curse because they moved to town after it took effect. And the reason the townsfolk find them odd is because they age normally with the passing years.
So there you have it: the possible reason the villagers are so judgey and predictable. More incentive to reverse the curse!