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4.6 out of 5 stars244
4.6 out of 5 stars
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on 9 September 2007
After the sugary fun of Pee-wee's Big Adventure, Burton made this ingenious and witty horror comedy. Bristling with imagination, it brilliantly showcases the visual style that Burton would come to call his own with comic-gothic productions like Batman, Edward Scissorhands, and Batman Returns.

Adam (Alex Baldwin) and Barbara (Geena Davis) play the recently deceased homeowners who are desperate to haunt yuppie couple Delia (Catherine O'Hara) and Charles (Jeffrey Jones) off their property. Adam and Barbara find a useful ally in depressive goth kid Lydia (Winona Ryder), before the titular 'Betelgeuse' (Michael Keaton) throws a spanner in the works.

In a way, it's a pity the film has been granted a 15 certificate because there's plenty here for kids to enjoy. Adam and Barbara's complete acceptance of their predicament (namely being dead) is a conceit usually reserved for children's films, and their ensuing antics play out like a kind of ghoulish Home Alone. But then Keaton's vile, swearing, swaggering Beetlejuice steps into shot. It's a hilarious performance, perhaps one that Jim Carrey might have a go at these days; and yet I doubt Carrey would be able to create such a magnificently obnoxious hick.

The production design and make-up is fantastic. The purgatory-style waiting room scenes, with all their shark attack victims and shrunken heads, perfectly house Burton's love for pantomime black humour. Some of the 'bigger' special effects, particularly in the desert netherworld that awaits Adam and Barbara outside their front door, look dated. But hey, no amount of CGI will look this charming after 20 years.
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I'm surprised I'm the first person to review this. for my 40" LCD and cheap Philips player, this is a marvelous clean up of the film compared to the early DVD flipper I had. It's been despeckled and has richer tones. I doubt such an old film could be restored any further- it's as good as it gets. It seems to be region free as an FBI warning comes up on my UK only player.

The deliciousness and inventiveness of the ensemble cast and director shine through once more.
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on 5 June 2010
Of all the movies that Tim Burton did, there are three names that come out a lot during discussions. Of course his two Batmans, then his masterpiece Edward Scissorhands, but most of all his excellent comedy Beetlejuice. Why's that? Because as a society where we usually consider the after-life as a dark and depressing world, Tim Burton presents death in a different perspective. He represents it as an extremely funny world where people become ghosts stuck in their own houses and are haunted by the living, a world where death is a huge bureaucracy, and a world where there are bio-exorcists, like the one and only Mr. Beetlejuice. Although this is a movie where the main characters are Alec Baldwin and Geena Davis, and they do an excellent job as a recently dead-couple, it's Michael Keaton who deserves the spotlight. For each time he appears on the screen, he just makes you laugh with his funny one-liners (excellent improvisation from Michael Keaton) and his perfect interactions with his co-stars such as Sylvia Sidney, Winona Ryder, Glenn Shaddix, Jeffrey Jones, and Catherine O`Hara, all future collaborators during Tim Burton`s career. Everyone, and I mean everyone, delivers a perfect performance.

Not only that it is a movie that has excellent visual effects, both traditional and with the computer. Also, I loved how they were able to integrate gorgeous stop-motion animations during the movie. They were well integrated in the movie and are a proof that this kind of animation can really bring great possibilities to a movie, though there are certain limits to it of course. But hey, that also counts for CGI too.

Finally, a great cheer to Danny Elfman, whose soundtrack really gave him the popularity and respect he deserved. A great idea from the makers of this DVD to integrate the soundtrack as a separate audio track.

In the end, a great classic that should be listened over and over again and being considered a classic of modern american cinema.
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on 4 May 2001
the first time I saw beetlejuice was when it premiered on Tv and I have loved it ever since then. Tim Burton has produced a true classic. is it a comedy, is it a horror, or is it one of the most original titles evr conceived. well, all of them really. True, the effects are a bit dated, but this is not a niggle that should put you off buying this superb piece of film. Michael keaton is truly brilliant as the evil bio-exorcist of the title and no matter how many times you watch it, you always come back. Buy it now, if not sooner.
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Tim Burton has done it again and produced another masterpiece. I know that Beetlejuice was released quite a few years ago, but this is the first time in recent years that I have had the chance to watch it. When I was younger I couldn't appricate what is simply a stunning and original film. Many of my all time fravourite films such as The Nightmare Before Christmas were directed by him. Beetlejuice tells the story of a couple who die in a car accident only to return to there home to discover that same fact. They must adapt to there new existance while attempting to 'scare' away the new occupients of there home. But without much help from the afterlife care they decide - against all advice - to enlist the help of Beetlejuice and chaos erupts. I know that by todays standards the special effects are showing there age and it does look quite 'plasticseany' in places. But it doesn't matter as the plot and acting are perfect. Bettlejuice is also extremly funny throughout. All these factors make it an brillient film which is a must see that can be watched over and over again. I like original ideas that are done to prefection unlike todays productions which are spitting out remakes left, right and centre.
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on 30 September 2015
That sure is a comedy, what do I say, a farce indeed in Molière’s style, and as they say in French “Bonjour les dégâts!” meaning something like “Good Morning Vietnam!” I must say there is no logic, no real development of any theme at all, except absurdity and tomfoolery, maybe some masquerade and charade in shambles. And it is funny just because it is absurd. […]

TIM BURTON – MICHAEL KEATON – BEETLEJUICE – 1988

That’s the real beginning of this Tim Burton of great fame. This film is absolutely crazy as for the tomfoolery, the ghosts, the people and the situations. It is off limits in all possible ways but it is great because this time there are two things that hold the whole story together.

First of all there is the music. The calypso is a phenomenal good idea. That music in itself is the music of the dead, of happy newly deceased who finally get their last word in this world: they can stay in their home and they become the real soul of this home that is inhabited by some living people and haunted by them with the full agreement and collaboration from the living inhabitants. Death is finally the pleasant delirium that it is supposed to be and not that ordeal so many people are afraid of. When you die you must make friends with some living people. The point is to find how you can make yourself useful to them so that they will welcome you in their home that used to be yours.

The calypso is the gluing element of this fable. Just for it I would watch the film twenty five times if not more.

The second element is that death is a world in itself, a world that is beyond limits and off limits at the same time, in other words infinite and limitless. Death is a real paradise if you accept to be a ghost and to welcome the living in your ordeal. The world of the dead is a vicious world you do not want to linger in. They are so dead that they have to wait for their turn to even get the slightest attention, to wait millions of turns before they just have one chance to maybe see Juno or whoever can help them change their diapers or dance the polka with flies in a spider web waiting for the spider to come and swallow you alive, well that’s a way of speaking since you are dead.

In this crazy world of the dead there is one character you must absolutely meet though you will lose your head, your brain, your sanity and even probably your dead virginity if you meet him. He is the concoction only the dead can relish. He is a breakfast drink for living dead, the extracted juice of some bugs generally known as beetles. And these beetles are not singing even if Beetlejuice is as gross and aggressive as most other beetles, I mean the type that sings. Remember his only and sole goal is to be resuscitated and in this crazy world of the dead you can only be rejuvenated, reborn if you marry a living being and in this case do not dream you can escape the straight marriage of those old days. I guess the Supreme Court had not yet ruled on the subject. Maybe the land of the dead is beyond their jurisdiction.

This way of laughing of the dead, of death is probably the best thing you can do while you are still alive and it is so easy to trespass onto the other side without even knowing about it and certainly not looking behind. Anyone who is a little bit anxious about the end of their life on this earth should enjoy this film that is more than entertainment, it is undertaking. Next time be careful and just run over the dumb dog who is trying to send you into the hellish sands of the dune inferno vastly travelled, run through and browsed by sand worms that have more teeth than a whole herd of dragons.

But remember that getting on board one of these sand worms is the best way to get rid of the bad demonic Beetlejuice and to conquer your haunting place in this here world of the living. You could even consider you have become the new Messiah, Moadib.

Dr Jacques COULARDEAU
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 8 August 2012
First off, before considering this film, you will need to have an open mind to all things supernatural, coupled with a good sense of dark comedy humour, as otherwise this film will be lost on you due to it's bizzare nature.(Film review).

The film starts out with a traditional USA homely feel to it, following newly wed's & childless couple the Maitlands (Alec Baldwin {30 Rock} & Geena Davis {Thelma and Louise}) , who sadly have a car crash & die. They then wake up in their home, and eventually realise they are now dead & have to come to terms with it. But when your dead time flys, and a new family have moved into their home, the Deetz's (Jeffery Jones {Deadwood} , Catherine O'Hara {Home Alone} & Winona Ryder {Edward Scissorhands}). After spending so much time decorating, the new family, namely Delia (O'Hara) are determined to update the decor, much to the dismay of the Maitlands, who have to live in the house for the next 125 years, so they decide to try & scare them out.

As they learn more about death & they're attempts fail, they become more of a facination & the Deetz's try to make money out of them with seances. Daughter & goth, Lydia (Ryder) , being strange & unusual can see them. They grow attached, and the Maitlands start treating Lydia like the daughter they never had, as she finds more in common with them, then her own living & breathing parents, which is a sweet story to follow. Anyway, failing to scare the Deetz's, and going against the opinions of they're death case worker, they call upon the help of Bio exercist Beetlejuice (Michael Keaton - Batman), but things get a bit out of hand, as he has his own agenda in mind.

Overall, Beetlejuice directed by Tim Burton as you'd suspect, is a very unique film, and imo has stood the test of time very well. The idea's used are very imaginative along with the dark gothic theme. The special effects which are a combination of puppets/suits , special effect makeup & some modern for the time, CGI-esque moments. Geena Davis & Alec Baldwin had good chemistry as a couple & the relationship with Winona Ryder character was great. Jeffery Jones & Catherine O'Hara were solid as the love/hate Deetz's. But the show stealer above them all without question, was Micheal Keaton as Beetlejuice. His comedic & eccentric performance just suited the character really well, and one of the most memorable charcters of film history imo.

Reccomended.
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on 7 October 2008
After they die, Adam (Baldwin) and Barbara (Davis) come back to their house as ghosts and find a family is moving in and the couple try to scare them away with help from bio-exorcist Beetlejuice.

Tim Burton's reputation as the darkest and most gothic director started here with a bizarre but wonderfully different tale of the dead and is both funny, and yet psychological scary, and brings a niche to the market in a strange and sophisticated way.

The film has a terrific opening with Danny Elfman's score exquisite to the bird's eye view of the town going past and the upbeat music plays right into our hands and will gear you up ready for the horror and excitement to begin.

Alec Baldwin (The Hunt for Red October) impresses as ambitious Adam and has good onscreen chemistry with Geena Davis (Thelma and Louise) and the pair create many laughs and are a joy to watch, especially when playing around with the sheets.

Winona Ryder (Girl, interrupted) gives a great performance as Lydia, the weird and wonderful teenager, who gives the film a more serious and realistic feel against Keaton's comic Beetlejuice.

The star of the show is Keaton (Batman) who plays bio-exorcist Beetlejuice, a crazed man who is evil, eccentric and enjoyable to watch, because he is weird and different, one of Tim Burton's finest creations, right up there with Edward Scissorhands. Beetlejuice is just so weird that he is almost loveable. What makes these characters work is the writing.

The plot is very consistent, if seeming a bit weird and far fetched to begin, with plenty of dark humour and amazing characters. There is plenty of physical comedy and some slapstick which spreads the humour through different characters. The dialogue is pitched well, also giving some cheesy but really likeable puns on the dead.

The ideology of ghosts is covered well, playing on human interpretations and putting twists and turns on this idea, and making it funny through a book for the dead.

The settings make this different to, with a different look upon heaven and hell, and the model of the town plays a great small yet significant setting. The colour and lighting hep achieve the dark and sinister feel of the narrative, as does the Oscar winning make up.

Tim Burton has created some wonderful films in his directing career, and whereas this film isn't as powerful as Sweeney Todd or Edward Scissorhands, it is easily the funniest and a joy to watch

8.5/10
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VINE VOICEon 30 August 2008
As a young movie fan I was told by my Dad that I cannot call myself a true movie fan unless I start watching some of the classic movies that were around before the 90's. So seeing as nowadays the DVD charts can be fairly hit and miss, some weeks have some great movies, others are not so good, it makes it difficult to find something good to watch.
So when my Dad and I rummaged through the bargain box at Blockbuster to see if there was any hope of finding a decent movie, I came across Beetlejuice. Of course I'd heard of it and knew what it was about, but it was a movie that I thought I just wouldn't go out of my way to watch. My Dad, who had already seen it and loved it, quickly snapped it up and we headed home to watch it.
I never would of guessed just how good this movie was going to be. It was just such a good film, and once it had finished I certainly kicked myself for avoiding it all these years.
The cast were all cast perfectly, but it's Michael Keaton who really made this movie for me with his great, comical performance as Beetlejuice. He was just so wacky and really great to watch, and he delivers some great lines thorughout the movie.
Alec Baldwin and Geena Davis were also very funny as the recently deceased couple, seeking help to get rid of the new arrivals at their home. Although it sounds like a morbid plot, because it's Tim Burton it's works, and is very funny in a dark way, and even though the theme is death the whole film isn't dark and dull, but instead seems to be filled with colour.
So it just goes to show that just because it's old, certainly doesn't mean it's not a good film, so take my advice, don't rent it... GO BUY IT, because this is a movie that doesn't dissapoint! Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice...!
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VINE VOICEon 17 June 2010
A childless couple (Geena Davis and Alec Baldwin) living in big old house have an car accident whilst returning from the village store only discover they are dead! The house is sold to a couple and there "gothic" daughter (Winona Ryder). The now deceased couple want to scare out the new arrivals but nothing is ever that easy, so they call upon a Bio-Exorcist Beetlegeuse (Michael Keaton)But the ghost with the most is maybe a step too far!

The Film is good fun and the surreal horror angle is delivered with a typical twisted Tim Burton style. The quality of the blu ray although not on a par with the latest and greatest releases is nevertheless pretty good. It shows no signs of artefacts and Gives an overall improvement in the film, leaving this blu ray as the best version of the film currently available. The Audio Track has had the HD multichannel treatment. There is a distinct lack of extras, not as poor as other some blu ray releases but just a few episodes from the cartoon series the film spawned. The Age of the film means that the Computer Generated Images we have become so used to aren't here but there is a fond nostalgia in me for the Latex special effects and stop animation techniques used.

All in all a fun filled 90 minutes and delivered at a good price
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