Being born in the 90s in an Asian country and having no love for horror or any ghost-related films, I never grew up knowing about the Ghostbusters. Other than the real catchy song and the cartoon series from the 90s, I never had much thought for the Ghostbusters franchise. That being said, I am split in opinions over the overall entertainment value of the new film, now rebooted with an all-female cast.
The premise of the film is relatively similar to the previous Ghostbusters films, just with a more modern take and an update in the characters. What is really interesting about the film is the amount of backlash it had even before it was aired in theatres. When they announced that the new film would star an all-female cast, the internet went crazy over the studio’s decision. When the first trailer came out for the film, the internet went crazy yet again, calling the film ‘unfunny’ and ‘bland’. After receiving all the influence from the media about the new film, I have to admit, I did go to the theatres with low expectations.
The first two acts of the film were as what the media and critics had said about it. The jokes were quite bland, even when Saturday Night Live alumni and regulars, Kristen Wiig, Leslie Jones, Kate Mckinnon and Melissa McCarthy, were the ones delivering them. In the first act, director Paul Feig even had to rely on a fart joke (lowest form of comedy it could get) just to keep the audience from leaving the theatres. For the first time in my life, I was at the verge of leaving an English movie before it is finishes. In the end, I decided to give this bore of an art another chance to convince me that this modern reboot could re-energise this dead franchise of the past. As it turns out, the third and final act was way better than I had expected in the end. The pace of the third act is way more entertaining and the gags and hilarity expected from a comedy film starts to emerge. I have to say that I was entertained by the end of the film. Not The Force Awakens-satisfied or Jurassic World-satisfied, but enough to feel that I had not wasted my money buying the movie ticket.
The cast stars many SNL alumni and current members, as mentioned earlier, and also Marvel regular, Chris Hemsworth (Thor, Rush). Turns out Hemsworth is not just a beefcake actor known only for his muscles and looks, but his natural gag entertainment too. While his antics as a ‘dumb blonde’ receptionist does get a little annyoing at times, you can’t help but think if he is portraying a parody of himself, since he had always been known more for his looks than his personality. Joining the main cast are also other SNL regulars like Cecily Strong, who portrays the Mayor’s assistant.
Overall, this film is not exactly the most exciting reboot in recent years. While it might/might not revitalise the franchise among the newer generations of movie-goers, it might just give them the necessary context to know why their parents grin whenever they hear someone says “Who you gonna call?”