After a year of internet harassment and the endless whining of fuckboys fearing the destruction of their childhood, the “Ghostbusters” reboot is finally here.
The movie stars Kristen Wiig as Erin Gilbert, a professor at Columbia University trying to earn her tenure.
Erin is pulled out of the world of academia when she follows an old friend Abby Yates, played by Melissa McCarthy, and nuclear engineer Jillian Holtzmann, played by Kate McKinnon, to a haunted mansion where they face a ghost.
They soon fall in with Patty Tolan, a subway worker played by Leslie Jones, after she’s chased by a ghost.
With their combined intelligence and the pretty face of their receptionist Kevin as encouragement, the four women strive to prove the existence of ghosts.
Their simple goal in the name of science spirals into a rescue mission when a whiney pissbaby named Rowan North decides to finally get his revenge on the world by unleashing a bunch of ghosts on New York.
When it was announced McCarthy and Wiig would head the all-female cast of a 1980’s classic, I was ecstatic. Toss in “Saturday Night Live” superstars McKinnon and Jones and there’s no way you could go wrong.
But regardless of the few jumps the film gave me, I’m sad to say the most terrifying part of this movie was how much I didn’t love it.
Not to say I hate it.
On the contrary, I have immense respect for the intention of this film, which was to give an audience an all-female action movie with witty one-liners and a complete disregard for the male gaze or perspective. The added bonus of having the “dumb blonde” trope fulfilled by a man just took my adoration over the top.
The women themselves were fantastic characters who defied gender norms and rolls. They were the heroes, they were the experts. There were no squabbles about love interests and they never had to rely on a man outside of answering the phone.
If anything, it was the directing that kept throwing me off.
Paul Feig is a good director known mostly for comedies like “The Heat,” “Spy” and “Bridesmaids.” Action and sci-fi are genres sorely lacking in his repertoire and it showed in “Ghostbusters.”
There was a little too much emphasis on the comedy — which probably sounds ridiculous when it stars four comedians. But when you’re going to combine comedy with action, the comedy has to be sharp and quick.
There were times it felt like the movie was forced to a halt to build a joke and instead of laughing my reaction was to become “that girl” in the theater that screams “Run you idiot” because a character stood still staring at a monster for too long.
The acting was solid and consistent. I got what I expected from McCarthy and Wiig — McCarthy with her witty optimism and Wiig delivering on her awkward comedic style of someone resigned to just deal with what life gives her.
But there’s no denying McKinnon was the true star of the show. Her portrayal of Holzmann as an oddball with a mildly concerning adoration for her inventions was lovely. She’s bizarre and fearless with a flirtatious humor and McKinnon plays it up without overdoing it.
“Ghostbusters” wasn’t everything I wanted it to be — but I admit my expectations were perhaps unreasonably high.
However, it was still a good movie with an important message to the film industry: women can play any role. Their talents transcend the limits of love interest, the mother or the damsel. They don’t have to be sexy to be memorable and they don’t need to fight one another to matter.
And after just getting a taste of what we’ve been missing out on all of these years, I think it’s safe to say women are going to demand more from Hollywood and it better be willing to deliver.
firstname.lastname@example.org | @Lexia Banks
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