Lazy Movie Review: Ghostbusters ’16

ghostbusters

Premise:  Also known as Lady Ghostbusters, #NotMyGhostbusters, and The Movie That Shattered a Million Fragile Childhoods; this was a remake of a movie a lot of people like from a long time ago.  Kind of like Total Recall (2012), King Kong (2005), Conan the Barbarian (2011), National Lampoon’s Vacation (2015), Arthur (2011), and so on.  What was the difference between this Ghostbusters remake and all of these other ones that’s causing such a backlash?  I don’t know?  Probably because there’s chicks in it, BRAH.  Bill Murray wasn’t a girl, didn’t you know that?  Why do things have to be different all the time?  Why do we live in a time when we are able to drink Ecto Cooler, but I still have to listen to women tell jokes?  This is such a cruel planet.  Did you know there’s a lady Slimer in this?  Doesn’t that make you want to write a 4,000 word think piece on the disintegration of Hollywood originality?  No?  Well, I guess you’re a stronger person than I am.

 

Things I liked:

-I think it might have been the very first joke in the entire movie, but the sentence, “And this is the room where P.T. Barnum decided he wanted to enslave elephants” is a legitimately great line, and you’re wrong if you think otherwise.

-I definitely dug the whole beginning of the movie, before they were Ghostbusters, and the leads are just acting like Paul Feig characters.  McCarthy and Wiig play to their strengths, and it works.

-Surprisingly to me, Leslie Jones actually gave a good performance.  She’s one of my least favorite SNL cast members, mostly because she does the same grating routine time and time again.  But in ‘Busters, she showed a little bit of range, and an ability to finally control the volume of her voice.

-I liked Chris Hemsworth as the dopey receptionist.  Probably could have been played to the same level of comedy with any number of different beefcakes, but he did just fine.  Maybe C-Tates would have been better, but who am I to say?

-Funny, not exhaustive use of the original cast in multiple cameos.

 

Things I didn’t like:

-It’s kind of a disjointed movie that only works in scenes.  Kind of like The Heat, which is the worst Paul Feig project to date, in my opinion.

-Like all Paul Feig movies (and his buddy Judd Apatow, too), it’s 15-30 minutes too long.  Gotta cram in all those clearly improvised scenes in there, though!

-I thought a lot of the ghost character design was…  not that great, maybe?  Like, what are some of these things supposed to be?  Is that a dragon ghost?  A demon ghost?  Is there a difference between a demon and a ghost?  Should I really care in the context of this movie?  Probably not.  Did you see Lady Slimer?!  Mind blown.  In all seriousness, the special effects bonanza during the final action scene didn’t really do much for me.

-And this is, what?  The fifteenth movie in the last five years to have a portal destroying a city that the heroes must close?  Want something real to complain about?  How about the overuse of portals as a third act plot device.

-Maybe I’m in the minority here, but I thought Kate McKinnon was trying too hard.  She was the kind of character who goes cross-eyed or waves her arms around for no reason whenever on camera, out of risk of potentially not being zany for a second or two, which is a shame because I really like her for the most part.  But it seems like everyone else I talked to liked her in this movie, so my opinion doesn’t really matter anyway.

-The dance sequence during the credits, which was a complete rip off of a similar scene in The Mask, thankfully didn’t make the final cut of the actual movie itself.  It would have been a tremendous momentum killer at a time when everyone probably wanted the movie to start wrapping up.  But the fact that it was shot at all is scarier than any of the ghosts.

-The remix/cover of the Ghostbuster theme was undeniably bad.

 

Final Thoughts:  It’s not really a movie worth creating a big stink over, nor is it going to be in anyone’s top 10 of the year.  I don’t think that such a brutally average movie will ever cause this much of a huge divide ever again.  It’s chuckle filled enough to check out on cable one day, if you can manage to keep your monocle from falling off your face.

Grade: C+

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