A Wild Ride with “Beetlejuice”: Over-the-Top Spectacle Lacks Original Charm

A Wild Ride with “Beetlejuice”: Over-the-Top Spectacle Lacks Original Charm

The stage adaptation of “Beetlejuice” offers a high-energy, visually stimulating experience. However, it diverges significantly from Tim Burton’s classic film, trading depth for loud, cartoonish antics.

Significant Changes to Beetlejuice’s Plot and Characters

The creators of the stage version of “Beetlejuice” have taken notable liberties with the original plot. They replaced Burton’s nuanced storytelling with a more boisterous approach. Beetlejuice, played by Justin Collette, is now even more manic and vaudevillian.

Beetlejuice is a Different and Brash Wild Ride
Image by: Yandex.com

Altered Dynamics in Character Relationships

The relationship dynamics between Delia, Charles, and the death-obsessed teenager, Lydia, differ significantly from the film. This change, particularly Delia’s role, felt less satisfying and altered the original charm.

Outstanding Set and Stagecraft Artistry

One-third of the show’s excitement comes from David Korins’ imaginative set design and Kenneth Posner’s dynamic lighting. Their artistry transports the audience from a Connecticut farmhouse to various eerie settings.

Spooky Effects: Too Much of a Good Thing?

The production’s spooky effects sometimes feel excessive. The constant barrage of strobe lights and sight gags becomes overwhelming, detracting from the overall experience.

Effective Use of Cartoon-Like Projections

Peter Nigrini’s Gothic projections, featuring flying birds or bats, serve as effective scene transitions. These moments successfully capture the original film’s eerie atmosphere.

Challenges with Sound and Musical Clarity

Despite its visual prowess, the stage “Beetlejuice” struggles with sound clarity. The lyrics, especially in high-energy numbers, are often drowned out by heavy electronic orchestration.

A Musical Highlight: “Day-O (The Banana Boat Song)”

One musical number stands out—”Day-O (The Banana Boat Song)”—delivered hilariously during a dinner party scene. It captures the whimsical spirit of the original film.

An Overwhelming Spectacle

The creators of “Beetlejuice” seemingly embraced the idea that “more is better.” However, the result is an overwhelming spectacle that lacks the creative depth of the film.

Beetlejuice is a Different and Brash Wild Ride
Image by: Yandex.com

Conclusion: A Spectacle Missing Burton’s Subtlety

“Beetlejuice” on stage delivers in terms of energy and spectacle. Yet, it fails to capture the subtle charm and creative substance that made Burton’s film a beloved classic.

Related Articles