Ghostbusters (2016)

I wish this were better. Really, I do.

I don’t know if there’s ever been more hatred spewed towards an innocent film. Hordes of people were spitting venom at this film from their mothers’ basements, and it’s been like that since the film was announced. Come on, humanity; this isn’t a film that supports the KKK. It’s a film that’s trying to empower half the human race!

Does it do a good job of it? (Sigh) Unfortunately not.

We all know the story by now. A few scientists (and an MTA employee) band together to fight all sorts of apparitions. You have four of the top comediennes (Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Kate McKinnon, and Leslie Jones) in the main roles, and they really are a dream team. Their chemistry is undeniable and electric. Chris Hemsworth plays the dumb, objectified secretary, and it’s beyond perfect.

But then the story shows up and ruins it. A man named Rowan is behind all the ghostly carnage, planting traps that summon menacing apparitions. And honestly, I was having a great time until he showed up. Like, smiling continuously. He’s not a great villain, or even a good one. He is, like the bitter misogynists hating on this film, a loser. The world has wronged him, sure, but he’s just unforgivably pathetic. Without him, there would be no conflict, but it would still be a better film.

Some comedies are just not made to have stories, and this should have been one of them. But the stakes were too high for that, which is already sad enough.

There was something really good about this film, though: the 3D. If you get a chance, I would absolutely suggest paying the upcharge. Director Paul Feig went to great creative lengths to make the experience worth it, making no sacrifices in the pursuit of depth, color, and definition. Black bars are added to the top and bottom of this presentation, allowing the “streams” and ghouls to pass over them, and it’s a really nice effect. I haven’t seen a third dimension done this well since Avatar and Life of Pi.

The sad thing is that it can’t save the film, even it it does enhance it. I added half a star because the 3D was so good.

This film itself is a bit of a mess, and I frankly had little interest by the end. A few people walked out early. It’s kind of like milk: it’s really delicious for a little while, but it spoils. And when it spoils, there’s really no going back.

The world needed this film to be great, and it really could have been. It’s just not. All I have to say is I hope the studios remember that, in times of crisis, it’s okay to call women.

2.5

Ghostbusters is in theaters now.

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