Halloween Countdown: Day 12 – Beetlejuice

From: October 17, 2011

If you haven’t seen Michael Keaton dance around in his Beetlejuice duds, you haven’t lived! October is the best month for this Tim Burton masterpiece, but I personally like to watch it about once a month. I can’t even begin to imagine my childhood without this movie, and it’s Calypso beats! beetlejuice

Now, I know what you may be thinking; “Tim Burton is horrible! He doesn’t come up with any of his own ideas!” And for the most part, you would be right. Though Beetlejuice has a number of distinct Tim Burton qualities, including a score by Danny Elfman, Burton is not responsible for the story or the screenplay. But, let us not forget that Burton is responsible for a number of charming films, spread throughout his working career, including Ed Wood, and his delightful adaptation of Big Fish. And honestly, how many directors are responsible for their own writing as well? Not many. Put away your feelings of hatred for Charlie and Chocolate Factory, and Alice in Wonderland, and give Beetlejuice a shot. It has the charm and the originality you’re hoping for. If you’re one of those who, like me, has seen this movie an excessive amount of times, then you already know what I mean.

If you have not seen it, here’s a little run-down: Danny Baldwin and Geena Davis play an everyday couple (Adam and Barbara) who meet an unfortunate end when they drive off of a covered bridge during their stay at home vacation. They soon find that being dead is much more confusing than they hoped, as they are stuck in their home with a new family, the Deetzes. The Deetzes are of course nothing like them, and in an attempt to run them away Adam and Barbara inadvertently release the bio-exorcist who resides in their model city; Betelguise. Despite the advice of their caseworker Juno, played by Sylvia Sydney with a throat stoma, they employ Betelguise to help them and quickly find that more than anything he is a hindrance. In the meantime the Deetz’s daughter, Lydia, discovers Adam and Barbara and is enthralled with their supernatural world. She can even understand their copy of “The Handbook for the Recently Deceased”, because being portrayed by Winona Ryder means that she herself it “strange and unusual.”

Beetlejuice is also full of Sandworms,  Shrunken Heads, The Room of Lost Souls, and of course, Otho. Seriously, if you reading this and have never seen Beetlejuice, go stream it from Netflix right now. If you don’t I will attack you with cocktail shrimp.

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