A new take on the original franchise, thirty years later - here again to save the world!
Review by Louise Keller:
At first glance, this new take on the original Ghostbusters from thirty years ago has all the elements: quirky characters, a top drawer comic cast, oodles of green slime and a paranormal bucket of visual effects in 3D. Yet somehow the film is not as much fun as it should be. There is a lack of spontaneity and everything feels contrived, especially in the first half, when laughs fall flat as the oddball team gets together. It is not until the ghosts are unleashed on New York City that the magic of the special effects kicks in and there is enough to distract us with imaginative visuals.
Led by Bill Murray, the 1984 original cast with Dan Aykroyd, Harold Ramis and Ernie Hudson created unique characters that became synonymous with the brand; director Paul Feig might have been well advised to create something brand new, instead of trying to emulate and reproduce a different version of characters that are iconic.
The cast here does its best and has its own appeal, with Melissa McCarthy and Kristen Wiig central to the action, keen to prove the existence of the paranormal. McCarthy uses her dimples and yells a lot, while Wiig is the man-hungry physics teacher who gets more than her fair share of green slime. Kate McKinnonís eccentricities are nicely loopy and Leslie Jones brings height and colour into the mix, as they play the other two members of the team. Most interesting of all, is Chris Hemsworth, whose usual male hunk image takes a subversive twist, cast as a male receptionist that is the equivalent of the blonde who inspired the blonde jokes. He wears glasses without glass (to save cleaning them), bumps into walls, forgets to answer the phone right next to him and instigates the most nonsensical conversation about cats and dogs imaginable. He sports an Aussie accent, too.
The story involves a weirdo hotel janitor (Neil Casey), who lures members of the spirit world through a series of devices he plants in an ancient mansion, the subway and an art deco theatre, where a rock band is playing. The craziness is countered by the vocabulary of scientific gobbledygook where words like plasma shields, proton shotguns, reactors and proteomic reversals purport to have meaning. The manifestation of the floating apparitions is effective, successfully relying on the magic of special effects, which are spectacular throughout. Highlights include a cameo by Bill Murray as a famed debunker, (Dan Aykroyd also appears as a cabbie), the use of the Ghostbusters logo in various forms and the grand finale, with the visual drama of ghosts unleashed into the night sky. Itís not a bad film, but if you wanna make a call, why not watch the 1984 original.
Email this article
GHOSTBUSTERS (2016) (PG)
CAST: Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Kae McKinnon, Chris Hemsworth, Sigourney Weaver, Charles Dance, Bill Murray, Leslie Jones, Dan Aykroyd, Michael Kenneth Williams, Andy Garcia,
PRODUCER: Amy Pascal
DIRECTOR: Paul Feig
SCRIPT: Paul Feig, Katie Dippold (based on 1984 film Ghostbusters)
CINEMATOGRAPHER: Robert D. Yeoman
EDITOR: Melissa Bretherton, Brent White
MUSIC: Theodore Shapiro
PRODUCTION DESIGN: Jefferson Sage
RUNNING TIME: 116 minutes
AUSTRALIAN DISTRIBUTOR: Sony
AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: July 14, 2016