Deadshirt’s Max Robinson and Sarah Register strapped on their proton packs and got mad goopy watching Paul Feig’s Ghostbusters reboot. Max: Alright so before we even get into the new movie, let’s talk about the original for a hot minute.
Sarah: It’s not my favorite movie of all time, but it is one of my favorite movies – get me? Max: For all of the doomsaying of the internet’s Lowest Common Denominator, the new Ghostbusters is a really fun movie.
Max: I was really surprised and impressed by how good the dynamic between the four ‘Busters is! Sarah: Even most of the humor was rooted in their relationships, making most of the laughs warm-hearted. Max: Rowan, as a villain, is kind of one-note but no more so than, say, Janosz from Ghostbusters II. Sarah: You know, I kind of dug that the first ghost they encountered was a Lizzie Borden type with her own Vigo the Carpathian painting (#girlpower).
Sarah: Flawless Human Being Sigourney Weaver showing up as Holtzmann’s teacher was just the most perfect thing as well.
Max: It’s a relief that this movie is, at the end of the day, very good because that (hopefully) means these risk-averse studios will see that movies like this have a huge, underappreciated audience.
Sarah: Ghostbusters redefines “remake,” allowing the original films and this new budding franchise to exist together in our universe while not sharing a universe of their own. Post By Deadshirt Staff (508 Posts)Deadshirt's writing staff is dedicated to bringing you thoughtful and entertaining media commentary.
I think my borderline religious reverence for the Ghostbusters is well documented on the site, but, Sarah, what’s your feeling on the 1984 original? The original movies often had the guys off doing their own thing, but the foundation of this quartet is the friendship between Erin and Abby (Wiig and McCarthy, respectively).
Kristen Wiig’s Erin is essentially the Venkman of this new movie, the ostensible skeptic who’s our lens for this whole world of the paranormal.
I loved when Patty screamed “GET OUT OF MY FRIEND, GHOST” before viciously slapping Abby, and when Holtzmann offered them all new weapons after the group got jilted by the mayor.
Like beyond just some amazing line deliveries (her calling Kevin “a big ol’ robot” is the best joke in the whole movie), she has this really wonderful physicality. The irony that their antagonist was kind of the embodiment of all that white male nerd rage that boiled up at the cast announcement was the cherry on top, especially considering the other male lead was basically a sexy stack of meat and “Mike Hat” jokes. I actually had some flashbacks to when I saw the original films as a wee lass during some of the scarier parts. They really needed to have interesting, visually distinct monsters for this, and the Eldridge Mansion ghost, the rock concert demon, etc were all super strong conceptually. Saving that big dance scene for the end credits was probably a good call, but it is kind of weird that there’s no explanation for why Erin “leaves” before they go save the city. It’s depressing that making a movie that says “Hey, women can be crude and funny and badass and goofy, too,” is seen as a political act, but Ghostbusters does that, and it does that so well.
With its success, this female-led film is sure to give anyone who has ever gotten angry over the gender-swap of an established male character exactly what they claim to want – movies with fresh stories and brand new female characters to quell the growing demand. I get why they had the film set in NYC in theory but like, why couldn’t the movie have been set *in* Boston…where they were shooting anyway? Ghostbusters (2016) kind of pulled a Force Awakens, giving the original film a firm nod in both plot and cameos, and it worked for me.
I totally dig that this movie not only had 4 highly intelligent, extremely capable female lead characters, but that they were able to form a kind of family. Erin and Abby’s friendship is really the emotional core of the movie, and while I feel like it gets a bit shortchanged in between Act II and Act III, Erin diving into the portal at the end to rescue Abby because she refuses to abandon her best friend again made me tear up.
And speaking of Holtzmann, Kate McKinnon is an angel who stole literally every scene she blessed with her presence. I liked her weird little dance after they have their first run in with the Eldridge Mansion ghost. But I think my big takeaway from Ghostbusters (2016) is that I can forgive a lot just because the film is so charming.
It was just as fun as the original films but had me in quite a few more fits of laughter than its predecessors (I almost had to excuse myself after watching Wiig pawing at multiple glass windows thinking they were sliding glass doors). Abby, Erin, Patty and Jillian are all weird dorks who are ignored or ridiculed by the world at large, but it doesn’t matter because they’re all ride or die loyal to each other.
There seemed to be a lot of handwringing over whether Leslie Jones was just going to be some kind of stereotype or something, but I dug how Patty as a character is just rooted in being super loyal to her new friends and that she brought some more grounded expertise to the team. The bit when he’s giving his big villain speech about how he’s been bullied all his life, how THEY would never understand, and Abby is just like “uh, we get shit on nonstop, actually,” was great. Like even beyond how fun it was to watch the four Ghostbusters on screen, even the minor one- or two-scene supporting characters were a blast. My favorite thing about the film, however, happened after the movie let out when I was in the theater’s bathroom and saw a little girl act out catching ghosts with a proton pack. There’s no story connection to the original two films, which is good, because that would have totally sunk this. Rowan’s an irredeemable psychopath and, oh yeah, all the ghosts in this movie are straight up evil murderers.
It’s amazing that a whole new generation gets to experience this franchise, AND that young girls have these strong, smart, silly women to look up to. The Force Awakens by necessity needed to bridge the young and the old casts; Feig understood that it’s crucial that these characters create themselves as a team on their own. As it is, the new movie just barely has enough screen time for all of its leads while still telling a complete story.
Walter Peck’s split into Bill Murray’s off-putting bon vivant skeptic and Cecily Strong’s weird-faced Lieutenant Mayor and it rules.

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