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A newly dead couple is haunting their own house and awful people move in. Who will the ghosts call to help them?

I can’t believe that I haven’t seen this movie in ten years, it’s a favorite of mine. But indeed, there is no review already on the site…so here goes.

What a fun movie! In the 20 years (omg, no, 23, it was 1988…Mr. Otter and I had just moved to the area we now live in…wow.) since it came out, the irreverent view of the afterlife has become more common, but in this, Tim Burton’s first big venture into the macabre, this was new and very amusing territory. My favorite part is the afterlife as some kind of awful social services department, still makes me laugh hysterically.

And the actors! they are all SO YOUNG. Winona Ryder had a couple of credits to her name, but she was just 17 at the time. Alec Baldwin is THIN. Geena Davis had not had her teeth fixed yet (and is still gorgeous). Katherine O’Hara and Jeffrey Jones are amazingly young looking.

And Michael Keaton…well, he was Michael Keaton. He still wins my vote for one of the best Batmans ever (not a big competition, actually) but in this, he’s just incredibly gross and funny. Which is perfect for this movie.

Because those are the two words that describe it best. Gross. And funny. Very, very gross. And very, very funny. At the time, I was amazed that I could even sit there in the theater watching TCBFTD* and not run away in horror…but that’s how funny it is. Like Army of Darkness, there’s a level of humor that makes things stop being scary. Even when they should be.

It’s hard to imagine that there’s anyone out there who hasn’t seen this, but if you haven’t, get it and watch it, you’ll be glad you did. Because even 23 years later, as I write this, this movie is still incredibly funny.

And gross. Did I mention that part?

*Things Coming Back From The Dead. Not a kind of movie I generally like, unless it’s VERY funny, or has rules, like some vampire and zombie movies.

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