Film Critic and Writer for ComiConverse.com, the Founder and co-host of the official Nerdcast Network Podcast
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Who you gonna call? Arguably the most controversial reboot of all time – Ghostbusters – is out, and our Film Critic Jordan Samuel provides the official ComiConverse review.
Ghostbusters (1984) is one of my all-time favourite comedies. I love the cheesy 80’s theme song and everything it stood for.
That cast was perfect, providing some great banter; surprisingly no other ensemble comedy has hit that level since. It’s impact on the comedy genre was insane. In terms of ensemble comedies, its held with great regard among the most influential comedies ever made.
Years have passed since then, the film’s fan base has aged and a new generation have taken over.
When it was announced the series would be rebooted with an all-female cast, many hardcore fans were appalled with the change. Trailers for the film created even more negativity with the dislikes totalling a crazy number – the marketing campaign had – at times – been a disaster.
Now, I didn’t mind the idea of retelling the story for a new generation, with a female lead cast due to my love for the Ghostbusters franchise.
Paul Feig is one of the best comedy directors working today, so I was on board with his vision.
But does Ghostbusters answer the call, or break up due to poor connections?
Paranormal researcher Abby Yates (Melissa McCarthy) and physicist Erin Gilbert are trying to prove that ghosts exist in modern society. When strange apparitions appear in Manhattan, Gilbert and Yates turn to engineer Jillian Holtzmann for help. Also joining the team is Patty Tolan, a lifelong New Yorker who knows the city inside and out. Armed with proton packs and plenty of attitude, the four women prepare for an epic battle as more than 1,000 mischievous ghouls descend on Times Square.
Ghostbusters is a solid effort to revive the spirit of 1984, but it doesn’t reach iconic levels the original had.
Sitting down for the movie was very nostalgic, especially when the theme played in the screening. Hearing the original theme again was enough for me to smile; something I haven’t really felt since The Force Awakens.
This might not mean anything since Ghostbusters II (1989) was so bad, but Paul Feig has so much fun with the source material that I couldn’t help but laugh. Which is strange, because SNL stars have never made me chuckle in the past. It all lies in the cast member’s relationships with each other.
The script may retread the past, but it was just so cool to see the Ghostbusters in action in 2016.
Feig directs the reboot lead by power house female comedians, Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Kate McKinnon and Leslie Jones. I enjoyed the way he directed the ladies with flat out crazy banter, so much more than expected with no room to breathe; all in just a 2-hour run-time.
The gags might be very childish in places, but remember this movie is for all ages. Kids will have a laugh with this one, as it offers something nice in a summer full of overly serious blockbusters.
Feige introduces the new team who all share a very real and awesome connection.
Erin (Kirsten Wiig) is a scientist at the Columbia University who in a past life was a paranormal investigator with former best friend Abby. They wrote a ghost-hunting book together, which Erin would now rather forget.
Kristen Wiig is at home in the franchise, she plays the main character in the film. I love how witty her banter was with the other members – something needed to elevate the ensemble cast.
She is very geeky and provides the much needed brains, her comedic presence is felt down to some very smart writing. Erin’s character development is proper and you can sense how big her role will be in the future. I would be down for a spin-off focusing on Erin because there is serous potential with her.
Abby played by Melissa McCarthy is still flying the ghostly flag with her eccentric co-worker. It was cool to see the comedy mega star in the role – as the script hardly gives her generic physically jokes. Melissa is right in the role, so much that I kept shouting her real name.
I would love a bigger role for her in the sequel as Kristen Wiig takes most of the screen time in the film.
Abby is one cool chick!
We also have Kate McKinnon in the role of Holtzmann, a sassy Ghostbuster who takes no prisoners. Arguably the coolest, I personally enjoyed her the most – with her jokes feeling like the best written.
Kate will have many dying of laughter in the theatre.
Patty (Leslie Jones), a metro worker who knows NYC better than anyone else. I did not like this character, due to her horrible stereotypical personality, the nonstop racial jokes which feel very at odds with the silly tone.
Leslie is a brilliant actress, but it’s a shame, the script never updated her role for 2016.
The slapstick found in the trailers is nearly nowhere in the final cut.
The brief physical gags are here but it never subtracted from the overall enjoyment – because those could get boring quick. Pacing is good also, I never had issues with jokes overstaying there welcome.
Kevin also does well with the run-time covering everything needed for a rebooted franchise – not dwelling on the past.
Ghostbusters is a blast! And was the best way to bring the story into a new generation, and hopefully the sequel won’t take another 30 bloody years. The female cast are great and really aren’t the Feminazi’s social media has led you to believe……
When there’s something strange in the neighbourhood, who you gonna call?
Jordan Samuel is a Film Critic for ComiConverse. Follow him on Twitter: @JordanESamuel
Ghostbusters is a blast! And was the best way to bring the story into a new generation.