His characters sort through Oedipal difficulties. This isn't too hard a stretch for the abundance of fairy tales with female protagonists, evil mothers and absent fathers. He also interprets Hansel and Gretel as children who were stuck too long in their oral stage and had to move on. Their rushing to eat a house of candy has nothing to do with the fact that the children are starving to death-literally-and only their oral greed (intentional sarcasm here on my part). Beauty and the Beast is a tale of a young woman who transfers her Oedipal attatchments from her father to a mate in a healthy way. Donkeyskin is not a tale about the potential evil of fathers, but a young girl's fantasies that her father will become sexually obsessed with her, and so on.
However, there are many very interesting points he makes as well, so again, it's worth a read. According to his own theories, Bettelheim should have been the most self-actualized person ever, because of all his readings of fairy tales, but he suffered from depression and committed suicide in 1990.