The first question is, should they have remade Beauty and the Beast, a cartoon masterpiece? In this case, sure -- why not? I believe it sufficiently captures the magic of the original, plus it gives new songs and new scenes to bring more depth to the characters and to explain a few items untouched a couple of decades ago.
The special effects were done well enough to look believable, and not stupid -- a common danger of bringing animated films to life.
In some aspects, I thought the remake actually outperformed the cartoon, and worth watching. Bring the whole family and enjoy it.