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The 'Burbs (1989)

Trailer
1:37 | Trailer
An overstressed suburbanite and his neighbors are convinced that the new family on the block are part of a murderous Satanic cult.

Director:

Joe Dante

Writer:

Dana Olsen
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Popularity
1,814 ( 161)
1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Tom Hanks ... Ray Peterson
Bruce Dern ... Mark Rumsfield
Carrie Fisher ... Carol Peterson
Rick Ducommun ... Art Weingartner
Corey Feldman ... Ricky Butler
Wendy Schaal ... Bonnie Rumsfield
Henry Gibson ... Dr. Werner Klopek
Theodore Gottlieb ... Reuben Klopek
Courtney Gains ... Hans Klopek
Gale Gordon ... Walter Seznick
Dick Miller ... Garbageman
Robert Picardo ... Garbageman
Cory Danziger ... Dave Peterson
Franklyn Ajaye ... Detective
Rance Howard ... Detective
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Storyline

This story takes place in a typical American neighborhood, when some new neighbors come to live in the house next to Ray Peterson. These new people are really strange; nobody has ever seen them, their house is a real mess, and during the night you can hear weird noises from their basement. The only thing they know is their name: Klopeks. One day Walter (an old man of the neighborhood) suddenly disappears and everyone starts to suspect the Klopeks... Written by Chris Makrozahopoulos <makzax@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

He's a stranger in an even stranger land... Suburbia See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to many of the cast and crew, may felt that the Universal logo that opens the film was the coolest thing about the film since it was unique and different. See more »

Goofs

Before climbing to post Art didn't have any ring on his fingers. Later, when he was burgling Klopek's house with Ray, we could see wedding ring on his left hand. See more »

Quotes

Dr. Werner Klopek: Do I look like an idiot, Mr. Peterson?
Ray Peterson: ...No.
Dr. Werner Klopek: Do you take me for an imbecile?
Ray Peterson: ...No.
Dr. Werner Klopek: You may have fooled the others, Mr. Peterson, but you don't fool me.
Ray Peterson: I-I-I-I fooled the others?
Dr. Werner Klopek: But you don't fool me.
Ray Peterson: I don't?
Dr. Werner Klopek: No you don't.
Ray Peterson: Am I missing something here, Dr. Klopek?
[...]
See more »

Crazy Credits

At the end of the Universal Studios logo, the camera zooms into Earth and to where the film takes place. At the end of the film, the effect is played in reverse. See more »

Alternate Versions

A deleted scene has Ray, Ricky, Walter, and Bonnie all standing by a ladder which leads to someone's roof. By their clothes, it is the same day they break into Walter's house. See more »

Connections

References The Lucy Show (1962) See more »

Soundtracks

QUESTA O QUELLA
From Verdi's Rigoletto
Written by Giuseppe Verdi (uncredited)
Performed by Enrico Caruso
Courtesy of Capitol Records, Inc. Special Markets Division
See more »

User Reviews

 
Light dark comedy
31 March 2008 | by mrtimlarabeeSee all my reviews

The 'burbs is a fun diversion from the usual neighborhood comedies. Joe Dante has a way of combining dark humor and outright horror and make it convincing to a mass audience (see 'Gremlins.') That this film has a lot of dark elements and remains just a light romp at the end is a feat unto itself. All credit goes to Hanks' good natured comedic performance and Dante's fun with the material.

Dante paints a portrait of the neighborhood at the very beginning. Hanks plays Ray, probably the most normal among the neighbors. Art is like a big kid and the first one to suspect the neighbors of foul play. Bruce Dern plays a war vet where Ricky Butler, played by Corey Feldman is the loud teenager. All is well in suburbia until clues pop up that might reveal the new neighbors, the Klopeks, as murderers.

With any other talent behind the film, this could have been a very dark comedy. But instead of playing up the horror, Dante has fun with it, playing up the comedy talents of his performers (notably Hanks and Dern, who take turns chewing scenery). Dante also has fun with visuals, notably in a hilarious dream sequence that Ray has.

Everything comes together to make this film work, including a great score by Jerry Goldsmith, that is part suburban comedy and part horror, complete with organs culled from a funeral march. This film is far from perfect, but it's fun diversional comedy and reminds of the great comic actor that Tom Hanks once was before becoming Oscar's golden boy.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

17 February 1989 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Life in the Burbs See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$18,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$11,101,197, 20 February 1989

Gross USA:

$36,601,993

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$49,101,993
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (workprint)

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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