Starring: Kristen Wiig, Melissa McCarthy, Kate McKinnon
Director: Paul Feig
Running Time: 116 mins
Ghostbusters is an American film about a team of four women in New York City who unite to learn more about the supernatural, but when it appears something more sinister and dangerous is occurring, they vow to fight the ghosts that threaten the world.
I’m delighted to say that I loved this film. I may not have the same nostalgic adoration for the original Ghostbusters as so many people, but I was so glad that I could enjoy this as an individual movie, one that proves that Paul Feig and his crew can do almost no wrong, thanks to a hilarious script and great performances throughout.
That’s the one thing that I want to emphasise about this film: it’s more a Paul Feig comedy than a Ghostbusters remake. For over an hour, this film diverts hugely from the 1984 movie, focusing far more on its own characters than simply copying the original beat-for-beat. Also, as a Paul Feig movie, it’s absolutely hilarious from start to finish.
It might not have the same raunchy humour as Spy and Bridesmaids, but there are still so many laughs throughout Ghostbusters. Given the poor trailers ahead of the film, I expected the impressively funny start to wear off, but I was hugely surprised to find that I was laughing a good few times every minute for about three quarters of this movie, and so was everyone else in the cinema.
The comedy in this film is absolutely excellent, without a doubt, and the writers did a fantastic job to make a PG-13 blockbuster so consistently funny. However, the biggest reason why I found this film so hilarious was definitely the performances.
Living up to their predecessors fantastically, the lead actresses Kristen Wiig, Melissa McCarthy and Leslie Jones were all very entertaining. However, the real stand-outs from this movie are Chris Hemsworth and Kate McKinnon.
Hemsworth, in a relatively small and simple role, is absolutely hilarious every time he’s on screen. It’s a performance that goes way beyond the bounds of anything he’s done before, but he makes what would normally be a pretty repetitive role, playing the brain-dead receptionist, hugely funny, adding an extra level of humour to the film beyond the four leading ladies.
But the person who was even funnier than Hemsworth was Kate McKinnon. Throughout the film, I’m certain that she accounted for 90% of the biggest laughs, even having me in tears laughing so hard at one moment. She plays Holtzmann, the bizarre but brilliant scientist, to absolute perfection, with an on-point balance between purely bizarre humour and side-splitting physical comedy, making her the brightest spot at the centre of this hugely funny movie.
However, I do have one clear flaw with Ghostbusters: its story. Whilst the comedy was consistently hilarious from start to finish, when the film strays more into action/blockbuster territory, it feels a little two-dimensional and predictable. The action and sci-fi is certainly something the original did far better, and when this film tries to emulate it, it’s too much like a retreading of the original, which was disappointing to see.
Overall, however, I couldn’t help loving this film. Yes, its story may be too similar to the original, but the rest of this film is an example of how to remake a movie. It introduces new characters that take the film in a different direction, and give it its own identity, as a fantastically funny movie with some of the best comedic performances in recent years, and that’s why I’m giving Ghostbusters an 8.0.