There’s something strange in the neighborhood, who are you gonna call? Ghostbusters! There’s a great way to get the chuckles in, who are you gonna call? Ghostbusters! There’s a perfect cast who almost feels like family, who are you gonna call? Ghostbusters of freaking course!
It’s already been 32 years, so does the original B-Movie extravaganza still hold up with our times? For the most part, absolutely. But are there still issues? Sure.
You already know the story of these average Joes becoming New York’s saviors, so I’ll just skip ahead to the part you actually care about: how the movie holds up after a generation has passed.
First, the actors: Bill Murray as Dr. Peter Venkman actually behaves more like a wisecracking jerk than you remembered him as. Just look at how he’s first introduced, how he cheats his way through an electrocution test so that the girl he’s testing is never wrong, but the poor guy next to her keeps answering wrong. Murray wins you over by his incredibly subtle comic actions, whether if it’s through an unemotional comment or an underwhelming reaction to something amazing. The rest of the cast follows the same approach, including Dan Aykroyd as Dr. Raymond Stantz, who can bring laughs with just a subtle head nod. Along with the deadpan humor given by the main cast, one other actor balances that out with his overly silly comedy: Rick Moranis. I doubt I have ever laughed harder in my life by a possessed guy with glasses rubbing pizza on his face and sniffing popcorn. If you haven’t seen this movie before, you will die of amazement by the cast’s natural chemistry that makes their one-dimensional characters surprisingly human.
However, like any shut-your-brain-off-for-two-hours movie, Ghostbusters still has room for improvement. The plot overall feels rather rushed, right from the start. The pivotal moment where the three scientists are fired from the university basically breezes by without much time to take it in. Then they suddenly air a TV commercial advertising their business, which just makes me want to know what happened in that process. Then a quick zero to hero montage transitions us from point A to point B. I sort of hoped to see more ghost hunting in a movie called “Ghostbusters.”
At least that’s easy to forgive: Ivan Reitman succeeded in pacing appropriate elements of tension that add to the scariness expected from 1980’s B-movies. The way that the eggs bubble in Dana’s apartment creates precisely the same type of paranoia felt whenever relating to such demonic forces. It’s a moment that slowly and gradually builds scene by scene until whammo! But I find it a darn shame that the film’s silly climax removes all tension for the jokes and special effects to have their moment of glory.
Does that mean that Ghostbusters is overrated though? I don’t think so. Not even close, in fact. This iconic 80’s feature is no Citizen Kane, but is still, even for today’s generation of millennials, a great big slimy ball of fun delivered by the perfect cast. So if there is some night where your friends are bored, who are you gonna call? Ghostbusters!
O’Connell, Sean. Bill Murray Gives His Most Honest Reaction Yet To The Ghostbusters Remake. Digital image. CinemaBlend. Disqus, 6/2016. Web. <http://www.cinemablend.com/new/Bill-Murray-Gives-His-Most-Honest-Reaction-Yet-Ghostbusters-Remake-135947.html>.