Beethoven is a 1992 family comedy film, directed by Brian Levant and starring Charles Grodin as George Newton and Bonnie Hunt as Alice Newton. The film is the first in the series of Beethoven films.
It was written by John Hughes (under the pseudonym Edmond Dantès) and Amy Holden Jones. The story centers on a St. Bernard dog named after the composer Ludwig van Beethoven owned by the Newton family and starring Nicholle Tom as Ryce Newton, Christopher Castile as Ted Newton, Sarah Rose Karr as Emily Newton, Stanley Tucci as Vernon, Oliver Platt as Harvey, and Dean Jones as Dr. Herman Varnick. Joseph Gordon-Levitt made his film debut as a first student.
When the film opens, a St. Bernard puppy and a large group of others are stolen from a pet store by two thieves, Harvey (Oliver Platt) and Vernon (Stanley Tucci). After meeting a dog during his escape from the thieves, the St. Bernard sneaks into the home of the Newton family. The workaholic father, George Newton (Charles Grodin), doesn't want the responsibility of owning a dog, but his wife, Alice (Bonnie Hunt), and their children, Ryce, Ted and Emily, convince him otherwise. While trying to name him, Emily (Sarah Rose Karr), plays a portion of Ludwig van Beethoven's Fifth Symphony and he barks along: thus they name him "Beethoven."