“Never compare me to the mayor in Jaws! Never!”
So, home video is trying to retitle this as Ghostbusters: Answer the Call. It isn’t the worst idea – the subtitle lets people know it’s not a remake – but it’s too late, ya’ll. We didn’t forgive Edge of Tomorrow for trying to retitle itself as Live Die Repeat on DVD and I don’t see people referring to the 2016 GB film as Answer the Call anytime soon.
Unless you’ve been living under a rock or are completely disconnected from pop culture this year, you might’ve heard that the new Ghosbusters is a ‘reboot’ with four women as the main cast. That’s fine by me! Apparently, it wasn’t okay with a lot of men who felt butt hurt about the whole deal. Trolls took to attacking the cast online. It wasn’t pretty. Was I the only one surprised to see so many angry Ghostbusters fans existed in the world? I mean, I like the original movie, too, but goddamn.
Listen: no movie is safe from getting remade, rebooted, prequeled, or sequeled. And if your main complaint about such a thing happening to your favorite movie is that women headline the cast then you’ve got issues, man.
Wait. See, something interesting just happened here. Like basically everyone else who talks about the 2016 Ghosbusters, I’ve gone for over 200 words and I’ve not even said whether the film was good, what it was about, who is in it, etc. Some movies – like The Interview with the Sony hack, the new Birth of a Nation with the director’s rape allegations, and basically any religious film, satire or otherwise – some movies inspire discussion about their legacy more than discussion about the film. We don’t talk about the world in the film, we talk about how the film fits into our world. And that’s cool… I guess? But it’s also too bad, especially for a movie like 2016’s Ghostbusters, which didn’t do anything to deserve people’s hate.
So, anyway. . . how about that new Ghosbusters film, eh?
Well, I liked it.
This is not a remake or a sequel. Dr. Venkman does not exist in this dojo. Four ladies with a firm belief in the supernatural (Kristen Wiig, Melissa McCarthy, Leslie Jones, and Kate McKinnon) use their scientific know-how to start a paranormal research business. But someone in NYC is enhancing paranormal activity, and soon it’s up to the Ghostbusters to save the day.
I should note that I watched the Extended Edition of the film. I’ve not seen the theatrical cut. The reason I watched the longer version is because so many others noted how the theatrical cut seemed to be too heavily edited. Anyway. I’m unaware if there are any changes in plot between the two versions, or any dramatic difference in quality.
The 2K16 Ghosbusters doesn’t rival the first film. Really, it doesn’t come close. But it stands maybe an inch above Ghosbusters 2, which I think lets scenes run too long, too lose.
Wiig and McCarthy may be the stars of the picture but it’s Leslie Jones and Kate McKinnon that get the most laughs. McKinnon especially. She is one of the funniest actresses around and she plays her scientific geek so strange, so bizarre that it’s like you can’t take your eyes off her. We need more Kate McKinnon movies in the world, gang. Also, Chris Hemsworth (Thor!) provides some of the film’s best laughs as the Ghosbusters’ dopey secretary. Someone please give Hemsworth more comedic roles.
Is watching Ghosbusters, a comedy with ghosts but hardly a horror film, considered as cheating for 31 Days of Horror? Too bad. I don’t care. I needed a laugh. And though the film has its dead spots and flat jokes, I discovered that I was wearing a smile for most of the movie. I liked it. Not a new classic but a damn fine piece of entertainment. Chances of a sequel are looking unlikely after a lackluster box office performance, but I’m personally hoping we see more of the gang.
Tomorrow: The Canal. It’s on Netflix if you’d like to watch and join in on the discussion afterwards.
Writer of horror, science fiction, and dark fantasy. Lover of books and film. Lifelong Godzilla fan. Reluctant blogger.
Blog notice: mostly this blog is for sharing my thoughts and talking about my books. From time to time I will also comment on books, films, music, sports, and/or videogames. During these times I may use images of the creative works under discussion. I'm posting the images under the "fair use" allowance, for purposes such as criticism, comments, reporting, teaching, and research. If you have any issue with images used on this blog, please contact me and the images will be removed.
I am not paid for my reviews and I do not take book review requests at this time.