Beetle Juice

THE NAME IN LAUGHTER FROM THE HEREAFTER.

 

The recently deceased Maitlands (Alec Baldwin, Geena Davis) find it difficult to scare off an unpleasant family that’s moved into their house; maybe a ghost that exorcises people is the answer? Director Tim Burton’s second film became his breakthrough and his knack for mixing up comedy with darker stuff is evident. This is a fun tale that turns the traditional ghost story upside down; if you can’t call the “Ghostbusters” your option is an uncompromising demon. Imaginative visual effects is a plus (although they do go overboard at times) and so is the cast, especially Michael Keaton as the rude ghost. Creative use of Harry Belafonte songs.

1988-U.S. 92 min. Color. Produced by Michael Bender, Richard Hashimoto, Larry Wilson. Directed by Tim Burton. Music: Danny Elfman. Cast: Michael Keaton (Betelgeuse), Alec Baldwin (Adam Maitland), Geena Davis (Barbara Maitland), Jeffrey Jones, Catherine O’Hara, Winona Ryder… Robert Goulet, Dick Cavett.

Trivia: Sammy Davis, Jr. was allegedly considered for the part of Betelgeuse. Followed by an animated TV series (1989-1991).

Oscar: Best Makeup.

Quote: “I’m a ghost with the most, babe.” (Keaton)

Last word: “I wanted him to be pure electricity, that’s why the hair just sticks out. At my house I started creating a walk and a voice. I got some teeth. I wanted to be scary in the look and then use the voice to add a dash of goofiness that, in a way, would make it even scarier. I wanted something kind of moldy to it, too. Tim had the striped-suit idea and we added the big eyes. I think that movie will go forever because it’s 100% original.” (Keaton, LA Times)

IMDb

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