WELL, THAT HAPPENED: Grow up, ‘Ghostbuster’ lovers

By on July 21, 2015

Some fans of the original 80s film are sexist babies

Yeah, that’s right: these ladies ain’t afraid of no ghosts. (Photo: Sony Pictures)

Yeah, that’s right: these ladies ain’t afraid of no ghosts. (Photo: Sony Pictures)

Jackson Hole, Wyoming – I understand where you’re coming from because I’ve been one of you before. I’ve jumped on internet message boards with the same passionate vitriol on various movie topics, spewing my opinions at anyone who will read them. I’ve criticized casting decisions, damned unfounded reviews and, yes, I have even blamed George Lucas for “ruining my childhood” with the “Star Wars” prequels.

When Paul Feig, director of “Bridesmaids,” “The Heat,” and “Spy,” announced that he would be rebooting the “Ghostbusters” franchise, but with an all-female team, I thought you might rally in support. Why wouldn’t you? Not only was the film going to star comedy heroines Kristen Wiig, Kate McKinnon, Melissa McCarthy and Leslie Jones, but also it was going to be directed by Feig, a man who is revolutionizing female-led comedies. Plus, he’s pretty good at it. The aforementioned films all have an average of 90, 65 and 95 percent positive reviews, respectively, on RottenTomatoes.com.

Instead, you “Ghostbusters” diehards have called the film “sexist” and “completely unnecessary.”

“Why not just do another film with the same actors as before?” you’ve asked.

The truth is that they tried. Dan Aykroyd wrote the script for “Ghostbusters 3: Hellbent” back in the 1990s, but nothing ever came of it. The script was lackluster, and producers weren’t too thrilled about a third adventure after the lukewarm reception of “Ghostbusters 2.” Another script emerged recently, but Bill Murray said the premise was “crazy bizarre and too crazy to comprehend.”

Believe it or not, it’s been 31 years since the first “Ghostbusters” film came out, and while there’s been a few cartoons and video games about Peter, Ray, Egon and Winston since, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that Universal Studios wants to revisit the premise with a remake. I, for one, am thankful we’re not seeing younger, more attractive male actors with the same character names. Instead, we’re being offered a fresh take on a beloved film, helmed by a respected director.

That’s right. We’re going to still love “Ghostbusters” (1984) no matter how good or bad “Ghostbusters” (2016) is. Nothing is going to sully that. While it was clear George Lucas’s prequel trilogy didn’t live up to, say, “The Empire Strikes Back,” it didn’t destroy our love for the original films. Heck, it made us appreciate them even more.

But let’s just call out the elephant in the room.

After reading so many online comments on various websites, it’s clear that the one thing that is deterring so many fans is the fact that the movie stars women. One commenter named Gummychuck wrote: “‘Ghostbusters’ is not a women’s comedy film and men are unlikely to go see four women in what would be a guy’s comedy. These four women may do well in a chick flic [sic], but I doubt they will play out well in this genre.”

When an image of the trademark jumpsuits was first released, robertspurt wrote: “I find it unlikely that women with contemporary fashion sensibility would fashion for themselves the same look as men from the ‘80s.”

On Sunday, Feig announced the new character names in a Twitter post: “Okay, here you go. Erin Gilbert, Jillian Holtzmann, Abby Yates and Patty Tolan.”

Snugglebot wrote: “They JUST AREN’T Ghostbusting names. Thanks for not hiring a director who is a Real Actual Fan™ of the source material, Sony!”

Take note. This level of outrage over something as simple as a comedy with female leads is ridiculous and completely unnecessary. When the film comes out next year, it will no doubt do fantastically at the box office, proving to Hollywood that films with female leads are not risky. When the original “Ghostbusters” came out, it only starred two female characters: Sigourney Weaver as a sex-crazed villainess and Annie Potts as a secretary.

Generally speaking, the social perception of women has, thankfully, changed since 1984, and we should be proud of that. If men can dress up in jumpsuits and fight ghosts, there should be no reason why women cannot.

I ain’t afraid of no strong female role models, but I think some of you might be.


A Ghostbusters Fan

About Andrew Munz

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