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- Anvilicious: Lydia is fascinated by death because her parents misunderstand and neglect her, but the Maitlands do nothing but reminisce about how much they enjoyed their lives, even with hassles like a Nosy Neighbor and their lack of children. In the end they find a joyous existence only by making peace with the Deetzes and becoming a second set of parents for Lydia. Death Is Dramatic only for the dead, and it sure as sunrise doesn't solve problems. Suicide Is Shameful, and even a "natural" death is a cast-iron pain in the ass.
- Some Anvils Need to Be Dropped: Considering how many people commit suicide? "Enjoy your life while you have it!" is a damned important message.
- Awesome Music: Aside from Danny Elfman's title theme, the use of Harry Belafonte, including "Day-O", which is also a Funny Moment.
- Design Student's Orgasm: This happens to the house at one point thanks to the Deetzes.
- Ear Worm: The title theme by Danny Elfman; wicked-cool, but hard to forget.
- Everyone Is Jesus in Purgatory: It's possible to interpret Betelgeuse/Beetlejuice as Satan himself. Besides having a name that looks similar to the Biblical "Beelzebub" (literally, "Lord of the Flies"), Beetlejuice is also given an origin story that could have come straight out of Paradise Lost: Juno, who according to this analogy would represent God (and in fact is named after the queen-goddess of Roman mythology) mentions that Beetlejuice was once her assistant but had parted ways with her because he thought he could be a better exorcist. And it's not hard to imagine that Beetlejuice's threatened marriage to Lydia would not only make her his wife, but cost her her soul as well.
- Fanfic Fuel: Just who was Betelegeuse before he died?
- "Funny Aneurysm" Moment: Sylvia Sidney plays a smoking ghost with a hole in her throat which emits smoke. Sidney died from throat cancer in New York City - at the age of 88.
- Harsher in Hindsight: The film as a whole, with its humorous focus on death, was written by two screenwriters who died in their 40s.
- Hilarious in Hindsight: The original concept of Beetlejuice being a shape-shifting reptilian demon. One of the insults used against Ghost of True Capitalist is that he's a reptilian shape-shifter.
- Just like in this film, Michael Keaton had to wear similar eye makeup in the Batman films. The hilarious part comes in Batman Returns when Batman unmasks in front of Catwoman...
- Betelgeuse wore a wedding outfit that's similar to The Joker's costume. Ohoho...
- In this film Michael Keaton and Geena Davis are enemies, but a few years later they played lovers on opposite side of the political spectrum in 1994's Speechless which co-starred the late Christopher Reeve of Superman fame, as a rival to former Batman actor Keaton.
- I Am Not Shazam: Due to the two being homonyms, people make the mistake of thinking the character is named Beetlejuice as well, rather than Betelgeuse.
- His name is officially "Beetlejuice" in the animated series - hence Lydia calling him "BJ."
- The Maitlands have difficulty summoning him at first, as Adam thinks it's pronounced "Bay-tell-gice."
- Additionally, despite the poster, the film credits make it clear that the title is Beetle Juice, not Beetlejuice.
- Memetic Molester: Betelgeuse, who is very pedophilic compared to the tv show.
- Memetic Mutation: "I'm the ghost with the most, babe."
- "Go ahead, make my millennium".
- To a much lesser extent: "My whole life is a dark room. One. Big. Dark. Room."
- Nightmare Fuel: The Snake form Betelgeuse takes.
- The Sandworm, an Eldritch Abomination with a head within a mouth of another head.
- Squick: Betelgeuse trying to marry Lydia. Unlike the tv show, where they at least show some affections towards each other to an extent, the latter is clearly disgusted with the former, being a potential pedophile.
- True Art Is Incomprehensible: Delia's sculptures.
- Much of the film itself, to an extent.
- Uncanny Valley: Most of the film's stop motion effects fall under this to a rather serious extent, though considering the themes and tone of the film, it's fitting.
- Wangst. Lydia's suicide note is a little over-the-top.
"I am...alone. (Scraps, starts over) I am... utterly... alone. By the time... you read this... I will be gone... having jumped (scratches out jumped) having... plummeted... off the Winter River Bridge."
- Lydia's whole role in the film is a deliberate invocation of this. The Maitlands (and even Betelgeuse himself) essentially talk her out of this attitude, and by the end she's a changed girl.
- What Do You Mean, It's Not for Kids?: Despite the PG rating, the film is loaded with adult themes such as death and sex (bear in mind that this film came out well after the PG-13 rating was introduced). Scenes that stand out in particular include Betelgeuse visiting a whorehouse and dropping an f-bomb.
The Animated Series
- Accidental Innuendo: Lydia nicknaming Beetlejuice "BJ."
- Ghost Shipping: Lydia and Beetlejuice. Word of God is that this was intentional.
- Hilarious in Hindsight: When Claire Brewster loses election as class president in the episode "Running Scared," she immediately demands a recount.
- In Name Only: Due to the different premise, Lydia and Beetlejuice are friends now, and the Maitlands and Juno are nonexistent. Lydia is also several years younger than the movie version.
- The Scrappy: Claire Brewster for being an Alpha Bitch and always insulting Lydia and her friends.
- Not many fans care for Beetlejuice's sickeningly sweet brother Donnie, either.
- Squick: You think Beetlejuice's crush on Lydia was creepy? At least BJ is relatively human - in one episode of the cartoon, "Pest O' The West", Lydia gets the unwanted attentions of an anthropomorphic bull ghost who wants to marry her. Beetlejuice even sees what Lydia's future will be like if he doesn't go back to rescue her... Yikes.
- If it wasn't bad enough, in his nightmare, there's little baby heifers running about all over the place. Ew...
- The Woobie: Percy the Cat in "Bewitched, Bothered, & Beetlejuiced".