My Rating: 3 stars
I don’t know why this movie caused such a stir amongst the movie-going community. Ever since this project was announced with its all-female cast, an endless stream of hate began spewing from the internet. Just when I was starting to think we’d made a little bit of social progress in this country, the internet goblins have to rear their ugly heads and spoil things. But, I was still pretty eager to see the movie. I figured that most of the negative predictions were probably coming from pouty men’s’ rights activists. And, I was really only going into this movie hoping for a wacky, summer comedy with Kristin Wiig and Melissa McCarthy.
I wasn’t relying on this film to resurrect my childhood affection for the Ghostbusters franchise. If I wanted to do that, I’d just re-watch the original. It’s not even like one movie—good or bad—could ruin such a positive memory for me. Because, let’s be honest. Ghostbusters 2 was a huge stinker, yet people don’t blame it for ruining their childhoods. I enjoyed this movie—even if only for the comedic stylings of Wiig and McCarthy, and the dumb gags at Chris Hemsworth’s expense. Plus, I hadn’t been familiar with Leslie Jones or Kate McKinnon’s work before this movie, and I thought they were hilarious. And then there’s the delight of watching New York City destroyed by a bunch of filthy, rampaging ghosts. That’s quickly followed by watching those ghosts being zapped to holy hell by crazy laser weapons that seem just as dangerous to the technicians as they are to the undead. That’s always a good time.
I just tried to put it out of my mind that the story was retreading such familiar ground. Although, the writing didn’t really make that very easy to do. The script seemed determined to get all its laughs by leaning heavily on nostalgia. The film was throwing brazen references and cameos at the audience in every single scene it seemed like. I could practically feel the script writers elbowing me in the ribs to say, “See what we did there? Did you catch the reference? It’s funny because you recognize these actors.” So that was worth an eye roll or two. And, it really was a shame that the script tried to rely on that kind of cheap trick for its comedy, rather than just living in the same wacky universe created by the original movie. But, I went into this movie wanting to enjoy the movie, and I had the good fortune of finding enough charming points not to be too disappointed.
I think you should probably watch this movie if you like comedy. It’s light and fluffy with a little bit of rude irony mixed in. Who wouldn’t like that? People who go into the film determined to find ways to rip it apart: that’s who. And, who really wants to be friends with people like that? The film does have its annoying points, so I won’t hold it against anyone who legitimately didn’t care for the humor. But, I don’t have time for people who have a chip on their shoulder about women in leading roles.