Beaches Movie Review

In the history of men going to the movies, there are few horrors as singularly terrifying as the movie Beaches. With its combination of precious tragicomedy plot, copious singing, and Bette Midler, the horror trifecta is already complete. But there's plenty more: Not only is Midler heard here singing about her tits (her words), Mayim "Blossom" Bialik plays the 11-year-old version of brazen Bette. Chills don't get much colder than this.

Watching the 1989 movie today, it's not just an unabashed chick flick, it's also revealed as a plain-old Bad Movie. For starters, it's not really about anything, instead preferring to work (or not) as a collection of loose scenes that illustrate the ups and downs of two friends (Midler and Barbara Hershey) from their pre-teens to the grave. Things happen, but not much. The film's only real plot point comes in the last act (spoilers ahead if you care), when Hershey's character croaks on us, sticking Midler with her daughter.

Midler has never been my cup of tea, but her histrionics here are almost completely intolerable. (Isn't She Great runs a close second.) Strutting around like she owns the joint, the "look at me!" act wears thin, quickly. In fact, it's pretty much worn out by Bialik's dead-on impersonation before Midler appears in the film at all.

Even Barbara Hershey (remember how famous she was supposed to become after this film?) is on the grating side. Rather than establish her legacy as a serious actress, the film stands as a testament to the creepiness of collagen lip injections, which she pioneered during the movie. She's a trailblazer, folks!

And what about that movie, anyway? Beaches is supposed to be about how true friendship is eternal -- that if you die, you'll always have somebody to take care of your illegitimate child. Hell, the way we see it Hershey would have been better off dumping her pal CC at age 11. Good ridddance.

The new Special Edition DVD includes commentary from director Garry Marshall, bloopers, a video, and, gulp, "Mayim Bialik Remembers..." (exactly what it sounds like).

The wind beneath her wings -- so, like, she's beating down on you with her wings?


jcslady's picture


How dare you say this is a bad movie. Yes today it's a little outdated because it was done almost 20 years ago, but the movie all the way through speaks to the heart and the triumph of the human spirit through life's twist and turns. Yeah it's a chic flick but only a guy with no heart would totally dismiss this movie.

6 years 9 months ago
View Comments

mpez's picture


CN- You are a guy who has no idea on female relation ships. Better to review more bloke action movies. Try terminator. lol

5 years 4 months ago
View Comments

Jenzy's picture


I agree, how could you dare say that about this film - it is one of the greatest films made! It shows true friendship lasts and carries on even after death. And the song is not about 'beating down with wings' its saying her friend was a breath of fresh air who helped her believe in herself all through their friendship and kept her spirits high.Its true, only a heartless typical bloke would dismiss this film. Grow up!

6 years 9 months ago
View Comments

Beaches Rating

" Unbearable "

Rating: PG-13, 1988


More Bette Midler

Bette Midler Announces Tour For First Time In Over 10 Years

Any fans who thought they would never get a chance to see Bette Midler live will be ecstatic to hear that the 68 year-old singer...

Bette Midler And Jenny Slate Arrive At The 2014 God's Love We Deliver Golden Heart Awards - Part 1

Celebrities flocked to the 2014 God's Love We Deliver Golden Heart Awards at Spring Studios and posed for pictures on the red carpet. Amongst them...

50 Cent And Bette Midler? Our Favorite Celebrity BFFs

Unlike Jennifer Lawrence and her rather normal best friend, Laura Simpson, celebs often pick other famous people to have as their BFFs. They all probably...

20 Feet From Stardom Movie Review

Entertaining and uplifting, this Oscar-winning documentary tells the unknown story of the back-up singers who made classic records so memorable. Packed with lively, engaging people...


L'Wren Scott Death: Bianca Jagger Leads Tributes To Fashion Designer And Mick Jagger Girlfriend

L'Wren Scott has been found dead in her Manhattan apartment this morning after what is believed to have been a suicide. The 49 year-old fashion...

Oscar Producers Zadan And Meron Tease Some Of This Year's Biggest Moments

Oscar producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron made a controversial hit out of the Oscars last year, but they might be on thin ice this...

Sigourney Weaver And Bette Midler Arrive At The GLWD 2013 Golden Heart Awards - Part 1

'Hocus Pocus' star Bette Midler and 'Alien' star Sigourney Weaver were among the star arrivals at the God's Love We Deliver 2013 Golden Heart Awards...

Bette Midler, The Toast Of Broadway For One-Woman Show 'I'll Eat You Last'

Bette Midler has made her triumphant return to the floorboards of New York's most famous theatre district, having been away from the stages of Broadway...