I admit, having seen the trailers to the new, all lady Ghostbusters film, I went in with reservations. The trailers were...not great—lots of slapstick, not much substance. I really wanted to like it, mostly to bite my metaphorical thumb at all the members of the He-Man Woman-Haters club whining about the film ruining their childhood. The cast was solid—a number of SNL alums and Melissa McCarthy, who is hilarious—and Paul Feig is an incredible director.
I didn't like it.
I LOVED it.
Ghostbusters is a fast-paced, side-splittingly funny romp, with a shining cast and great cinematography. Everything about this film was solid. I don't remember the last time I've had so much fun watching a movie. The cast is absolutely solid, and it really seems like everyone involved was having a blast in this film. Kristen Wiig plays Erin, a no-nonsense professor who gets pulled into the world of the paranormal by old colleague Abby, played by Melissa McCarthy. Joining them is eccentric genius Jillian Holtzmann, played by Kate McKinnon, and Leslie Jones' subway worker and NYC history expert Patty. They hire a dim-witted, lazy, and yet incredibly lovable Chris Hemsworth as their secretary, and band together to stop New York from getting overrun by an apocalyptic ghost attack.
Everyone in this movie is great. Kristen Wiig and Melissa McCarthy's chemistry onscreen is phenomenal, and Leslie Jones delivers a strong performance. The real charm in this film, though, comes from two standout characters—Chris Hemsworth's Kevin and Kate McKinnon's Holtzmann.
First off, Hemsworth. I had no idea the guy who played Thor was so skilled at physical comedy, but he had me cracking up every time he was onscreen. He's the most useless member of the team, but somehow he still manages to be completely adorable while doing it.
Secondly, Kate McKinnon. Having not watched SNL, I feel like I've been sleeping on this massive talent, and I now plan to troll her IMDB and find and watch every single damned thing she has been in. She was fantastic, absolutely the breakout in this film. She straight up stole every scene she was in with her oddball, off the wall timing and delivery. Whether it was deliberate or not, her resemblance to Egon from the cartoons is striking, and her genius inventions and attitude reminded me of a mix of both Rick from Rick and Morty and Tank Girl. I read somewhere that they intentionally queer-coded her character—if so, let me tell you it worked. I walked out of there with a massive crush on Holtzmann. Especially this GIF. Dear god.
The story progresses fast, with tons of action and laughs. "Meninist" fanboys who were butthurt about this film aren't going to like it, though. The film's main villain, Rowan, played by Neil Casey, is going to be the only character they can relate to—a pallid, whiny, misanthropic outcast butthurt about being a pallid, whiny, misanthropic outcast.
The film isn't perfect—there are a few running gags through the film that seem pretty tired and contrived—but all of my qualms about this film are trivial enough not to get into.
So how does it compare to the original Ghostbusters film? Well, it's a different film altogether. This is no pallid remake. This film stands on its own, and although there are nods and sweet little homages and bits of fanservice to the original flick, this movie is a completely different piece, with different things to say. However, as far as this reviewer is concerned, the new Ghostbusters is just as funny, groundbreaking, and clever as the original, with more to say. And as a girl who desperately wanted to be something other than a secretary, this is a monumental achievement.
—Chris Hemsworth can DANCE. Damn.
—The little digs at angry fanboys are wonderful
—Holy shit, Holtzman.
—I want literally every gadget in this film
—Slimer is still adorable yet disgusting
—There has to be a fetish for sliming
—I just googled "sliming fetish"- there's DEFINITELY a fetish for sliming.
—I now cannot unsee sliming fetish
—I wish I had never googled "sliming fetish"
—I wonder if I'll be put on several federal watch lists for "sliming fetish"
—I love that they never once make a crack about Melissa McCarthy's weight or the attractiveness of any of the 'Busters
—Yes, Chris Hemsworth is the subject of reverse sexism. HOW DOES IT FEEL, BOYS?
—Holy damn, Holtzman. I want to marry this weird, gorgeous creature.
—STAY AFTER THE CREDITS
Directed by Paul Feig
Screenplay by Katie Dippold & Paul Feig, Based on 1984's Ghostbusters by Dan Aykroyd and Harold Ramis
Produced by Amy Pascal and Ivan Reitman
Starring Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Kate McKinnon, Leslie Jones, Chris Hemsworth, Neil Casey, Charles Dance, Michael Kenneth Williams, Matt Walsh, Andy Garcia, Cecily Strong, Ed Begley, Jr.
Running Time: 116 minutes