Movies vs. Musicals: Beetlejuice

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photo edited by Ethan Johnstone

Beetlejuice the musical is better than the movie because the plot is thicker and you actually see Beetlejuice more!

Ever since I could remember I have always enjoyed theater, whether I was just watching it or being a part of it. One day I got thinking about how there are so many musicals that are also movies, so I have made it my goal to compare the two and find out which one is better in my opinion. I decided that I am going to start with Beetlejuice and Beetlejuice the Musical. 

Let’s start with the plot of the two. The movie starts inside the house of Adam and Barbra Maitland.  They head to the store and later when they get back home they actually find out that they have passed away. The musical has a very different start with it beginning with the funeral of the character Lydia Deetz’s mother’s funeral. If you watch both the movie and the musical you see that they both have almost completely different plots while also have some similarities.

In the movie, Barbra and Adam are trying to get the people that moved into their house out. In the musical, it also has Barbra and Adam trying to get the people out but at about the middle of the musical, the story switches to Lydia trying to get her mother back from the netherworld, so she can see her again.

Another difference between the musical and the movie is that in the movie Barbra and Adam go to the netherworld right away to try and figure out how to get the Deetz family out of their house. In the movie, they try to avoid the netherworld at all costs. In the movie it shows that Lydia’s father Charles had already gotten remarried to someone named Delia but in the musical Charles and Delia have been secretly having relations and Charles eventually asks Delia to marry him, further pushing the plot.

The last thing about the plot differences is probably what bothered me the most. In the musical, we see Beetlejuice in the second song of the musical but in the movie, we don’t see him until about the middle of the movie. In fact, in the movie we barely see Beetlejuice at all, he’s only in it for about 15 minutes of the entire movie. Both the movie and the musical have some explicit content though.

Beetlejuice the movie actually has some pretty well-known actors such as Winona Rider, Michael Keaton, and Alec Baldwin. The musical doesn’t have as well known actors like Alex Brightman, Kerry Butler, and Sophia Anne Caruso. But in my opinion, the actors in the musical were better than the movie.

Now I would like to talk about my top 5 songs in the musical. My favorite song from the musical is Home. I chose this song as my favorite because I am a sucker for a ballad, and I just like the sound of Sophia Anne Caruso’s singing voice. My second favorite is probably Say My Namecause I think that the song has a lot of power behind it from what is going on in the story. My third favorite is Prologue: Invisiblebecause once again I love a good ballad. I just put this one a little lower on the list cause it doesn’t have as much power behind it. My fourth favorite is No Reasonjust because I think it’s a really fun song to listen to. My fifth favorite song is The Whole “Being Dead” Thing, Pt 2.because it is also a very fun song to listen to.

Between the movie and the musical though, I’d have to say that I like the musical more than the movie because I find the story to be slightly more interesting along with the fact that Beetlejuice was barely in the movie that was named after him.

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