Who ya gonna call? First thing, your mom. You never call her. Don’t be an asshat.
After that, come find out what we thought about the new Ghostbusters!
In the past few years, it’s become quite obvious that “Don’t judge a movie by its trailer” is the new “Don’t just a book by its cover”. Whether the trailer is a raging success or a complete failure, there’s a good chance that the film will be the exact opposite. I am looking at you, Age of Ultron, and your exciting previews and sneak peeks. And I am certainly looking at the new Ghostbusters.
When the first trailer came out, the internet exploded with the cheerful glee of the ever-present trolls. I admit, it was off and strange and not particularly funny.
To be completely honest, I’m not the biggest fan of reboots to be begin with. For one thing, most of the films and TV shows that are being remade don’t need it – if the original ones are good, they should be left alone, and if they’re bad… Well, maybe we need to forget about them, period. Another issue with the reboots is that they take the resources that could’ve been invested into the original projects, many of which will never see the light of day because someone decided that we need 3 different Spider-Men or another Fantastic Four film even though the first two were an unforgivable mistake.
Needless to say, I had my doubts about the new Ghostbusters directed by Paul Feig and starring Melissa McCarthy, Leslie Jones, Kate McKinnon, and Kristen Wiig, all of whom I’ve been familiar with from their previous projects and whom I admire deeply. The all-female part was cool, I just wasn’t sure we needed to reinvent a classic.
And, boy, was I wrong!
Now, it’s hard to say just yet whenever or not the remake will ever become as big a deal as the original feature, but let’s give it a couple of decades and see how it goes before we write it off – the way we did with the first one, shall we?
The plot of the new movie is rather similar to the first one’s – a group of scientists finds a way to prove the existence of the paranormal entities, trap them, and save people of NYC from the trouble of having to deal with the persistent poltergeist. Much like the first time around, the team is not particularly well-accepted at first, but by the end of the movie, the become real heroes. Hooray!
It’s not the plot, however, that makes Ghostbusters of 2016 extraordinary, but the fact that the film is funny, dynamic, and interesting, and it passes all tests that define treatment of women in the media with flying colours:
- Bechdel test – there are 4 women in the film and the majority of their conversations have nothing to do with men. They talk about science, history, and cool gadgets to kill ghosts. How awesome is that?
- Sexy Lamp test – no woman can be removed and replaced with a lamp with the plot remaining intact.
- Mako Mori test – the character arcs of the protagonists have nothing to do with men and are not supporting or defined by men.
- And my favourite one: Furiosa test – it pissed off a lot of dudes.
On top of that, we have a 2-hour feature about 4 women and not once do we hear a fat joke. These 4 women are eating pizza, on screen, and they’re not talking about carbs and calories and diets. They were not sexualized, they are weird and funny, and they are wearing jumpsuits and IT IS OKAY! And not once did anyone say that WOMEN can’t catch ghosts. Sure, their ability to do so was questioned but not because of their gender. Man, I wish my real life was more like that!
To sum it up, Ghostbusters wasn’t perfect because no movie ever is, but it was hilarious and enjoyable, and I want to be Kate McKinnon’s BFF forever and ever.
Dudes, I’m with Nadin. I really like Ghostbusters. Haters gonna hate. This is a good movie and I gave them my cash money in theatre and I’ll dollar vote again to purchase a copy. This guy gets it.
When we went to see the film, we were watching out for two things:
- Sexism. How do we treat men when we “gender swap”? Because it’s not forward momentum for an equality movement if we just make the same mistakes with men as lamp candy. Namely, is Chris Hemsworth a fully realized character?
- Racism. One African-American in our core group. What’s her character like compared to the other women?
I think we score 1/2 here. Chris is not a beautiful, bespectacled lamp. Sure, he’s a dim bulb, and clearly hired based on adding value because of his appearance, but the character feels satirical. It’s a comment on how stupid it is that a woman in that role would often be overlooked and cartoonishly vapid. But Kevin is important to this story and he has his own secret life, as an aspiring actor. If you’re a dude complaining about Kevin, well, we learned it from you. See how that feels? Not very good, right? Now, can we have a team with men and women and all play nice? It’s not supposed to be us against them. And also, there aren’t just two categories so let’s stop making pink and blue boxes and forcing people, and movies, into them.
But, I’m not sure how I feel about our scientists being the white women. Of course, maybe I’m being elitist because I’m a scientist so I’m making assumptions that we’re smarter and better. People who do jobs that require fewer years of education don’t have less value. I’m not sure where I’m going here. I’m just bringing it up. The labs that I’ve worked in have always been full of people from all over the globe. So, you know. It seems like the world I know.
In summary, warning lights are for dudes.
For months, I tried not to get involved in any debate around the new Ghostbusters because I just believed in this movie and had no time whatsoever for butthurt trolls who will pay to see Marvel and DC movies leeching onto their nostalgia but can’t bear the thought of a gender-swapped reboot of anything because they’re afraid of cooties or something. Women, people of colour, and the MOGAI/SAGA community weren’t created by Anita Sarkeesian (though I wouldn’t have minded if it were the case). We have always been there and we’re just claiming some fucking space but hey, you don’t want to get me started.
So, turns out I agree with my darling buns: I really like this movie. Is it perfect? No. No movie is perfect except for Princess Mononoke -shut up, I will fight you on this. But a lot of trolls out there pretend that since the first Ghostbusters was perfect, the fact that this one isn’t makes it a horrible piece of trash.
Okay folks, let’s be real.
The first Ghostbusters was sexist as all hell, lacked character development, and wasn’t so exciting when it came to action.
This reboot… lacks energy in the action scenes and has kind of an overlong climax. The whole emotional bit after the actual peak was completely unnecessary – the arc it was supposed to complete had already been completed fully by the events of the story. As for the lack of energy, I think it comes from Paul Feig. Action isn’t his forte. Comedy is. And that’s where this movie truly starts to shine. The comedy in this is pure gold and the best bits aren’t even from Kristen Wiig or Melissa McCarthy (two of Paul Feig’s regulars) but from Kate McKinnon, Leslie Jones, and Chris Hemsworth. First of all, I didn’t know Chris Hemsworth could be this hilarious. The whole covering his eyes thing whenever there’s a loud noise? I laughed so much I did that thing where sound wouldn’t come out of my mouth anymore. I almost peed myself a couple times just because of Kate McKinnon’s facial expressions. Also, that slapstick moment with Leslie Jones was so good I may never be afraid watching The Exorcist ever again. That’s. How. Good. The. Comedy. Is.
Women are funny. Get over it.
P.S: Stay until the end of the credits.
P.P.S: My favourite version of the Ghostbusters song is still the Extreme Ghostbusters one and I am not sorry about it.