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Beetlejuice (1988) Film Review


Michael Keaten


Alec Baldwin

Adam Maitland

Geena Davis

Barbara Maitland

Catherine O'Hara

Deela Deetz

Winona Ryder

Lydia Deetz

Jeffrey Jones

Charles Deetz

Sylvia Sydney


About the film

  • Released: 1988
  • Director: Tim Burton
  • Producers: Michael Bender, Larry Wilson, Richard Hashimoto
  • Running time: 1 hr 32 mins
  • Genre: Fantasy, Comedy
  • Distributed by: Warner Bros
  • Genre: $15,000,000

The Film

Released in 1988, Beetlejuice is a classic film which I have recently viewed on Netflix. The film is about Adam and Barbara Maitland who haunt their former home after being killed in a car accident. They were on their way to their country home in Connecticut when their car accidentally plunges into the river. On realising they are dead, they start to read a book called "The Handbook for Recently Dead."

Jane, a Real Estate agent, sells the home to Charles and Delia Deetz and their daughter Lydia. Delia completely redecorates the house. Adam and Barbara, however, return to the house as ghosts and can't believe how their former home has changed. Technically, it is their former home. But both Adam and Barbara refuse to believe this, even though they're now dead and living as ghosts.

In the afterlife, they are appointed a case worker called Juno. She informs them they must stay in the house for 125 years. Charles and Delia are unable to see the Maitlands, but Lydia is able to see them, so she befriends them. Now, Juno advises Adam and Barbara that they should go about scaring the Deetz family out of the home. But they should never, ever, call Betelgeuse, as it is correctly spelt. By calling him, this would be a mistake. After attempts to scare the family fail, the Maitland's do, however, call Betelgeuse. But they soon regret this as he is a very rude and obnoxious man. Betelgeuse lives in this little model village, which is quite funny to see.

The film takes us through the antics the Maitland's have with trying to get the Deetz family out of what they think is their home. And also grappling with having Betelgeuse helping them.


My Thoughts

Surprisingly, I had never seen this film until recently. And I only watched it because it came up in conversation with a friend and he recommended it. I'm glad I did though as I quite enjoyed it. I didn't really find it a horror film though, more of a comedy film. Even when Adam and Barbara realise they are dead they didn't seem that bothered about it. And I found it quite comical that they should find a handbook for the recently deceased.

If I didn't know that Michael Keaton was playing Beetlejuice, I would have never have guessed under all that make-up. I think he played an excellent role as the little character. And the special effects I thought were quite good too. I thought it was good how they made him look like this little man living in a model town. There are some comical moments in the film. The comedy may be quite dark, but still, made me laugh.

The film has quite a Gothic and burlesque feel about it. But I don't think this made the film any less funny or comical. It still made me laugh out loud in parts. This may be one for you to watch if you haven't already.

Beetlejuice Trailer

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2020 Louise Powles


Matt Brown from Pasadena on June 05, 2020:

Great review! I can't believe you never saw it before! Michael Keaton is truly amazing in this film.

BRENDA ARLEDGE from Washington Court House on June 04, 2020:


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I have always loved this movie.

Maybe because it is just so different...or maybe because it sticks in your head afterwards.

Like I will always remember the words...beetlejuice, beetlejuice, beetlejuice.

Thanks for sharing your review.

It was in no way a horror movie...i loved the little town in the display.

DREAM ON on June 03, 2020:

I am not a horror film watcher I love comedy. I did watch BeatleJuice years ago and I was pleasantly shocked and found it everything you said it was. Surprising and funny. I have to go watch it again. I thought Michael Keaton's talent played a great part and making the movie a success. It made 74 million dollars with a budget of 15 million. Thank you so much for bringing back a good memory.

Rajan Singh Jolly from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on May 23, 2020:

After reading your review Beetlejuice seems one fun film I would enjoy watching. Thanks for the review.

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on April 24, 2020:

Thanks for the review. I have heard of this movie, but have never watched it. If it is as funny as you wrote, I will look for it. It is good to laugh!

Devika Primić from Dubrovnik, Croatia on April 05, 2020:

I like the review encourages me to watch it.

Liz Westwood from UK on April 03, 2020:

I remember hearing of this film, but I have never watched it. Your review is very helpful and informative. It gives me a clear idea of what it's all about.

FlourishAnyway from USA on April 03, 2020:

I have not actually seen this either and now is as good a time to catch up. I’m glad you reviewed this. Thank you!

Lorna Lamon on April 02, 2020:

I loved this cult classic and with Tim Burton as the director it did not disappoint. An excellent review Louise and even though I haven't watched it recently, you have encouraged me to do so again.

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