Ghostbusters (2016) Review
Ahhh, Ghostbusters (2016). Paul Feig’s attempt to be the ultimate White Knight. While it had so much potential to be great, it ended up just okay. It was not the movie I was hoping for. It also did not end up being the movie I thought it would be.

I was one of the hundreds of thousands of people that did not like the trailer. It almost seemed like whoever did the marketing really wasn’t sure what they were doing. The very first line in the trailer was “30 Years Ago, Four Scientists Saved New York”. This immediately threw up a red flag for me. First off, this is supposed to be a whole new franchise that ignores the original. Secondly, they were only 3 scientists in the original group. So without watching a scene I’m already confused.

The next thing I see in the trailer is this neon glowing apparition. The CGI looked like Tron had a threesome with the live action Scooby Doo and Joel Schumacher’s Batman & Robin. I’m literally 30 seconds into the trailer and all I can think is they just made the worst movie of 2016. It was going to be this years Fant4stic. Then they start introducing the characters and it seems like they are just copying the original now. That’s unfortunate. I was hoping for some unique characters instead of just a gender swap. It looked like a confusing, unfunny mess. I didn’t laugh at all during the first couple trailers.

Then all the controversy happened. Personally, I saw very little hate about the women. It was mostly the script and cgi that had people worried. Sony, in their infinite wisdom, decided to take control of the comment section on the YouTube trailer and delete any actual criticism. They left all the sexist comments though. What they were effectively trying to do was use the negativity to get people to watch a movie they knew wasn’t very good. Trying to use misogyny as a marketing tool. I admit, it did get people talking. You had all the feminist talking about how men just hate the movie because it has 4 women in it. Then you had the anti-SJWs talking about how it wasn’t the women that bothered them. All the while Sony is playing it up and Paul Feig is insulting the fanbase. What a fucking mess. Maybe James Rolfe was right to not even bother with this in the first place.

I spent the next few months trying to find something to like about it. Melissa McCarthy and Kristen Wiig I usually like. I liked some past Paul Feig movies. Dan Aykroyd, Bill Murray, Ivan Reitman and Ernie Hudson were involved. (RIP Harold “Egon” Ramis) There was a lot that should have been loved. Yet, from what I was shown, it was hard to justify watching the film at all. Unfortunately I was unable to find anything to latch on to. Pretty much the only reason I had to watch it was to see how bad it ended up being.

I decided to watch it anyway. While there are some glaring issues, a lot of which I had already predicted, it really wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be. It is no where near the level of dogshit that is Fant4stic. Sure 90% of the jokes fall flat, the villain is a forgettable nobody and the cgi was terrible. It still was an okay movie. That’s just it though, it was just okay. It wasn’t great and it wasn’t horrendous. It just is.

I snickered a couple times, but most of the jokes flat out fail. For example Melissa McCarthy’s Abby crowd surf’s to the demon to catch it. Leslie Jones’ Patty tries to do the same thing but isn’t caught. She yells that she’s not sure if it’s because she’s a woman, or because she’s black, but she’s mad as hell. Well, considering that Abby just did it right before you, it must be because you’re black. It wasn’t funny whatsoever. Dan Aykroyd’s cameo as a racist taxi driver not wanting to go to Chinatown… also not funny. This film tries to throw 5 jokes a minute at you. Maybe 1 every 10-20 minutes I’d laugh at. That’s a problem with the script.

The tech doesn’t follow it’s own rules. Some of the new proton weapons are pretty awesome. At first they can only ensnare the ghosts. Yet later during the climax of the movie they start killing the ghosts? I didn’t really get that. If you set rules for your own universe, you kind of have to follow those rules or it takes you out of the experience.

Almost all of the cameos were a complete waste of time. Ozzy, waste of time. Ernie Hudson, waste of time. Dan Aykroyd, waste of time. The only one that really moved the plot along a bit was Bill Murry. His character was an ass though.

The movie is really a She-Woman, Man Haters Club full of misandry. I find that ironic considering all that was said before hand. Every single male character is either a complete buffoon, a fucking asshole, or a moron. They made a virginity joke towards the villain and they shot the final boss in the dick. You can’t sit on your high horse screaming “MISOGYNY” when your movie is full of sexism itself. I really don’t care if you want to bash men, but don’t claim the moral high ground while doing so. For Christs sake Paul, climb down off your mountain and come back to reality already. In my opinion you just made the women look weaker by making all the males look like dumbasses. They had no one to overcome. It was really weak writing.

The script had some really terrible choices in it. They made the villain evil because he was picked on. Really? How fucking lame is that. Leslie’s character, Patty, was just the stereotypical loud black woman. I though that was a terrible choice. There was this scene in the subway system where Patty was listing off historical facts. I really loved that part of her. If I had created that character she wouldn’t have been a transit worker. She would have been a New York City Historian. She would have known all about the ghosts when they were living beings. She would have been able to impart some wisdom about the ghosts and locations that would have lead to their defeat. It would have given her character some depth and I think she would have fit with the team better.

Thankfully they didn’t have the stupid dance scene in the actual movie, just the end credits. That was a really dumb choice to want to push that. I really can’t believe that Amy Pascal approved that when she first heard of it. Thanks to the Sony leak for letting me know about that little nugget of information.

Even though the ghosts were glowing like they just left a nuclear plant, the actual designs were not bad. The librarian and the subway ghosts would have been kinda scary if the neon was toned down. I didn’t really get the ghosts at the end of the movie. Most were like balloons or something. Just seemed kinda odd. A lot of them did look pretty cool though. Slimer and his wife though. That should have never happened. Also the logo coming to life, no bueno.

The technology overall I liked. I wish they could have used more of that. They tried to fit it in through some montages, but it didn’t seem like it got much screen time to me. Next one I’m sure. I really wanted to see more of the bear trap thing. That looked awesome. Though, now that I think of it, I’m not really sure what Abby and Erin brought to the table. It seemed like Holtzmann created everything, and Patty had some info. Hmmm, interesting.

The 4 women seemed to have good chemistry. They played off of each other well. I think they COULD be really funny together. I just think they need to take their time on the script for the next one and make sure the jokes work. Tone down Patty’s loudness, and Holtzmann’s wackiness and I think they’ll work better. They really needed someone sarcastic though. I thought that was going to be Kristen Wiig’s Erin but I guess I was wrong on that. Thor can go though. He didn’t really need to be there. He had a couple funny lines but just seemed like a way to make fun of “stupid men” instead of an actual character.

I already know there is going to be a sequel. Sony has already said as much. I really hope that Paul Feig takes the ACTUAL criticisms of Ghostbusters and fixes them for the next one. Check your ego at the door dude and write an actual story instead of just trying to bash men and push women forward. You’ll end up with a better movie.

I know I bashed this a lot, but I really wanted a good Ghostbusters movie. I had high hopes and it didn’t quite deliver. It was okay and I think my daughter will like it. It is no where near as good as either of the originals, but it is also not nearly as bad as a lot of people thought it was going to be. If I had to rate it, I’d probably give it 2.5 stars. I might purchase this once it’s on sale but not full price.

Categories: Featured, Movies

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