Skip to main content

Movie Review: Ghostbusters (2016)

Ghostbusters is a summer spectacle. It's light on plot and heavy on laughs and action -- a perfect escape! This reboot of the beloved 80's franchise stars four of the funniest women in show business today: Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Leslie Jones, and Kate McKinnon. Their chemistry, including with the hilarious Chris Hemsworth, together with the cameos, soundtrack, and special effects, make for a terrific moviegoing experience.

Probably the biggest thing about the reboot is all the actual ghostbusting. Armed with weapons cooked up by mad genius Holtzmann (McKinnon, who electrifies every scene she's in), the Ghostbusters are on a mission to trap and study the paranormal. This means, of course, that the movie has legitimate scares: spooky doors opening, mannequins moving, a character trapped with a vengeful spirit. While the emotional core of the movie is the physical and emotional reunion between Wiig's Erin and McCarthy´s Abby, even that takes a back seat to findin' and bustin' ghosts. 

Which is what we came for! Wooooooo!

When the threat escalates, the weapons improve and the action amps up. There´s a particular sequence where I had to stop myself from leaping up and clapping wildly after our heroes triumph, it was that exhilarating. And then there was the very funny coup de grace against the Big Bad, which I did not see coming but seems obvious in hindsight. The only problem is that the sound is so overwhelming that even shouted dialogue gets lost in the din. 

While the pacing is brisk, The Ghostbusters takes time to give nods to the actors from the original movie. There were a lot of claps from the audience during the cameos, especially the last one. And there was laughter aplenty, since the dialogue is so ridiculous (in a good way) and every actor has excellent comedic chops, from the four leads to Hemsworth to the various well-known comedians onscreen. 

My beef with the film, apart from the loudness, is the editing. A number of scenes end abruptly, and while everything ultimately builds toward a cohesive story of four friends who save the city, the movie could've used more Holtzmann and Patty (Jones). A more compelling villain would also be very welcome.

Overall, the new Ghostbusters hits all the right notes: it's irreverent, high-energy, and relies on the chemistry and charisma of its team. Stay until the end for the easter egg!

TL;DR: Worth watching in 3D!  

This post brought to you by Boston's Outside the Box festival!

Popular posts from this blog

An International Women's Day Miracle!

Truly, International Women's Day is a special day. No, not because multitudes are out there rallying for our rights and giving voice to the powerless. It is because I won a gift card from a company raffle!

Let me explain why this counts as a minor miracle. You see, I never win anything. I answer every damned survey sent my way, participate in all the raffles, buy lottery tickets -- to no avail. This particular raffle occurred monthly, and I had been faithfully entering my name every month for two years, with no results. Finally, last month, I declared: "No more!" and unsubscribed from the mailing list -- but not before entering one final time, because why not.


There's also some déjà vu at play here. You see, four years ago, I won a gift card from a company raffle. The one fracking time I won anything! I was elated! Shortly thereafter, also on International Women's Day, I was laid off from my job.

Sooooo...since the day's almost over, I guess I'm not…

Paint Nite!

Last night I joined the "Oops" Paint Nite event hosted by the Club Cafe in Back Bay. About 12+ people came to relax and have two artists guide them through painting this original work:

The point was not to slavishly duplicate "Oops" -- we were instructed to make it our own, to relax, and not to utter the words, "Mine sucks," "Can you do this for me?" or "I thought this was paint-by-numbers!"

Speaking of dashed hopes, I had assumed that wine was included. I had done something like this before, only it was in the morning and we all got mimosas. Not so here! While the artists were setting up, I schlepped over to the bar and was rewarded with a generous pour of Cabernet. Now I was ready.

The setup: Everyone got a 16" x 20" canvas, three paint brushes, and a palette (a paper plate) with red, yellow, blue, and white paint. One artist (Brian) had the microphone and would paint with us, while the other was the assistant (Kory) who wo…

Get Out (2017)

Get Out has a charismatic lead, a terrific soundtrack, and damn good cinematography. While it’s described as horror/comedy, it’s more disturbing/cringe-y than scary, and I mean that in a good way. This is an entertaining movie that’s also pretty effective as social commentary.

The film stars Daniel Kaluuya as Chris, a photographer who’s about to spend the weekend at his girlfriend Rose’s (Allison Williams) parent’s house. Naturally, it’s in a secluded spot in the woods. When they get there, the awkwardness that might be expected from a first-time meeting gives way to a series of bizarre behaviors and interactions. While Chris initially takes it all in stride, it eventually becomes clear that there’s something sinister going on behind the scenes.

The acting and dialogue are highlights of the film, as is the camera work. In particular, Kaluuya’s eyebrows and head tilts are so expressive that the audience knows what’s going on in his head even as he politely brushes off eccentricities. A…