6.9/10
60,522
278 user 105 critic

The 'Burbs (1989)

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An overstressed suburbanite and his fellow 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
2,481 ( 289)
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
Brother Theodore ... 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:

Life In The Burbs Will Never Be The Same Again! See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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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, 19 February 1989, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$36,602,000

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$49,102,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Imagine Entertainment See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The films' original running time was 1 Hour 47 Minutes which featured the original ending where Dr. Klopek tried to kill Ray Peterson in the ambulance and is caught red handed by Ray's friends and the police detective played by Rance Howard. When the film underwent reshoots, virtually twenty minutes was reworked for the final theatrical cut which runs, 1 Hour 42 Minutes, marking it about 4 and a half minutes shorter than the originally intended theatrical cut before the reshoots. See more »

Goofs

Walter rides home in a car with Illinois plates. One scene shows mountains in the background. Before the end credits, the camera zooms out on a map placing them near Des Moines, Iowa. See more »

Quotes

Mark Rumsfield: In Southeast Asia we'd call this kind of thing bad karma.
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

There were three filmed endings to the movie. The first is the one that is in the normal release of the movie both domestic and international. The second, available as the 'alternate ending' on the DVD version, follows the path of the first one, but is slightly different and does not contain the sequence in which the ambulance crashes into the house or the part where Mark Rumsfield slide tackles Hans Klopek. It does have a few more scenes which include Hans being interrogated by the police, Dr. Werner Klopek giving a speech to the police on what is wrong with the suburbs, and Ruben telling Ray that he was going to enjoy having him over for their final dinner. The third (and most downbeat) ending, which has not been released in any form officially, is supposed to have Ray get killed in the ambulance by Werner, the Klopeks are pronounced innocent, and garbage bags are found bound and gagged in the Klopek's car trunk. The last ending follows the original ending contained in the script. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Brad Tries...: Brad Tries Soylent Green (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

The Showdown
(uncredited)
Written by Ennio Morricone
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
I Love This Movie
10 October 2006 | by ReelCheeseSee all my reviews

Originality can go a long way in movieland, as THE 'BURBS so perfectly illustrates. Tom Hanks is Ray Peterson, an average schmuck not sure what to do with his at-home vacation. He soon finds his excitement when he and his paranoid neighbors convince themselves the weirdos on the block are responsible for the strange disappearance of the neighborhood's beloved old man. So they do what any of us would do... break into their home to find proof of the dastardly deed.

So many critics charged that Hanks tarnished his reputation with this effort. But for the umpteenth time, the critics were just being overly critical. THE 'BURBS is a hilarious, well-written and wonderfully creative piece of work. It's the kind of movie Joe Dante (GREMLINS, Matinée) does best. He takes a situation we can all basically relate to, turns it upside down and shakes the hell out of it like a snow globe.

An unnecessarily heavy-handed ending is all that stands between THE 'BURBS and a 10-star rating. All of a sudden a fun little ride is derailed by an angry outburst and contrived syringe battle. If Dante had it to do over again, he surely would have come up with something more suitable (and humorous).

Of course THE 'BURBS is not for all tastes, but if you like the pre-PHILADELPHIA Hanks and are in the mood for something completely different, you won't want to mi


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