I Ain’t Afraid Of No Ghost...
March 24, 2016
DISCLAIMER: The views, thoughts and opinions contained within this article are those of the writer and his alone. They in no way reflect upon the thoughts and or opinions of FOCUS, the FOCUS staff, any other contributing writers or random strangers who may wander into the FOCUS office at any time. Any complaints in reference to this article will be taken under serious consideration and then openly laughed at.
In 1984, under the direction of Ivan Reitman, Bill Murray, Dan Akroyd and Harold Ramis took on the now ubiquitous roles of parapsychology professors who set up shop as a paranormal removal service. During the course of the film, their characters- Peter Venkman, Raymond Stantz, and Egon Spengler are joined by Winston Zeddemore (played by Ernie Hudson) to create a supernatural comedy the likes of which had never been seen - Ghostbusters.
Over the past 32 years this thrill-omedy, its catchy theme song and catch phrases have reached and exceeded cult classic status. Spawning a plethora of merchandising, toys, video games, and cos-play gear for all ages, in addition to two successful cartoon series. It also produced a sequel...which most of us like to pretend never happened (it was a stupid suck) so we’re just gonna not mention it...other than just then.
The fan following for this film has expanded exponentially over the past three decades. There are online fan clubs and websites dedicated to the spook catching quartet. You can’t go to a comic-con without seeing some folks with homemade proton packs pull up in a variation of the films 1959 Cadillac ambulance- ECTO-1. Most of these diehard fans have eagerly waited for years for a worthy sequel to the 1984 original. Faux movie posters (like the ones in this week’s pic) have circulated the internet driving up the excitement and anticipation. But now...the wait is over...or is it? Being retired from the “critics’ corner” we’ll leave the movies reviewing to the FOCUS’ top-notch reviewer Adam Long’s tender mercies. But that doesn’t mean I can’t complain about it prior to its July release date.
The latest addition to the Ghostbusters franchise is not an honorable attributed sequel, but a horrific remake. This opinion is shared by literally hundreds of thousands online, who have openly expressed their dislike for the films initial trailer. The problem with this negative feedback is that the moment anyone (specifically male anyone’s) protests the film, they are immediately labeled as male chauvinist pigs; this due to the all-female cast. If you say you don’t like the film and the way the actresses portray the Ghostbusters, you must be indicating that women can’t be Ghostbusters. “Well let me tell you mister, women are better than men! And we can damn well do anything a man can do!” Really now? Say, while you’re pitching a bitch, can you open this pickle jar for me? If women are so independent and “don’t need no man” then why can’t they come up with their own version of a ghost-busting film? Call it Spook Slayers or Poltergeist Getters? Why do they have to run up the women’s rights flag to trash a beloved classic film? You see when you make feminism the issue this is the kind of irrelevant and negative feedback you’ll get. Sorry to tell all you ladies this but- it’s not always all about you being a girl.
Seriously though, back to the real issue at hand, the film’s feminine touch is not why it’s creating such discordance in the cumulative geek community. Many fans of the original film (myself included) were excited at the prospect of an all-female remake. Hell, nobody cares who plays the Ghostbusters; just give us the Ghostbusters, as long as you do it right. Judging from the preview, this is not the case.
The problem is not the talented comedic team of Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Kate McKinnon, and Leslie Jones who portray the GBs, it’s the script they were given. Based on the preview, the new film takes all the comedic bits from the original and milks them to death. Forgetting that what made the first film humorous was the subtle yet serious comedy implanted into a film that was genuinely horrifying. It wasn’t funny because they tried to make it funny, it was funny because of situation the humor was pre...Huh? Oh right. Everyone got offended and upset at the “pickle jar” joke. So nobody’s going to bother to read on for the sake of resolution.
Well that brings us to the actual point of this whole train ride anyway. Every argument and/or discussion shouldn’t always find its way into a dispute over a person’s gender, race, sexual or religious preferences. It seems that all people waste a lot of time desperately looking for ways to be offended. This isn’t the way things should be. We should learn to laugh at ourselves, enjoy criticism for what it is and not look for the negative unless it’s there. Let’s all be happy, play and sing together, because life is too short to waste a single second on bitterness. With the exception of people who are just genuine a-holes...we should hit them with sticks till they learn to play nice.
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Hope to hear from ya, until then try and stay focused. See ya!