In addition to reprising his iconic role as a mischievous freelance “bio-exorcist” for “Beetlejuice 2,” Michael Keaton dons the cape and cowl for the first time in more than 30 years in “The Flash.” At a double VIP screening of Tim Burton’s “Batman” and the Empire-hosted movie “Flash,” Keaton said playing Beetlejuice again is “the most fucking fun you can have working out.” Part of that is the practical and ponderous nature of the sequel, which Keaton was keen to emphasize:
“And you know what it is? We’re doing it exactly like we did in the first movie. There’s a woman in the big waiting room for the afterlife literally with a fishing line, I want people to know this because I love it, pulling on a cat’s tail to make it move”.
In fact, Burton is a lot like Sam Raimi in that both are artists with a knack for blending the macabre with the comedy whose imagination seems to dwindle in direct proportion to the amount of CGI their films use. Even Raimi’s “Spider-Man” trilogy is more practical and heavy than you remember. To be clear, this is not my attempt to suggest that digital effects and sets are fundamentally inferior to practical ones, they are not. It’s just that Burton is one of those directors who tends to get lost without something tactile to work with when he’s designing a project. It makes sense when you think about it, given his background in hand-drawn and stop-motion animation.