Ghostbusters has had an endearing effect on the 80’s generation, for many (Including us here at Screen One) it is a favourite movie. Others look back on it fondly. So after the recent mis-step that was the Paul Feig reboot/reimagining/homage whatever it was in 2016, the bad memories from that have been washed away and Jason Reitman, son of the original director and someone who grew up on the movie sets of the originals and now a movie director in his own right, takes up the mantle and attempts to reconnect the Ghostbusters to the cinema audience once more.
When a single mother and her two children move to a new town, they soon discover they have a connection to the original Ghostbusters and the secret legacy their grandfather left behind.
Where to start? Well, to start with Ghostbusters: Afterlife is an utter delight. It takes you right back to the feeling of when your first witnessed the awe and majesty of the original. It’s almost a seamless link on from the first two movies. It brings back that big movie feel that the modern cinema has lacked for so long now. Yes there, have been spectacles over the years however, nothing with the simple movie going feel, that the roll in roll off multiplexes give you these days. Simply put Jason Reitman has lovingly knocked it out of the park.
The film simply is not only a wonderful sequel, that brings back many fond memories from the original such as the opening bars of the score, to the fan service (And it’s loaded with it) which never feels over done or intrusive at any point. It simply works, all of it. It’s the result of what happens when someone with not only knowledge of the source material first hand, but someone who cares for what they are producing for the audience.
The new cast are simply terrific, McKenna Grace is note perfect (Not only on her song over the end credits) but as the nerdy granddaughter of Egon Spengler. Her voyage of discovery has the audience as excited for her discover her roots as the characters love of all things science. This girl is going to be a huge star, watch this space. Paul Rudd, holds the new cast together alongside Carrie Coon as the adults in the room, but have some of the best comedic moments together. Stranger Things Finn Wolfhard is in familiar territory with all the supernatural things happening around him and his awkward teen routine again is whip smart for the movie. As for Logan Kim’s Podcast, well he’s in danger in stealing the whole film out from all the rest of the cast, the original members included. Every scene he’s in is an absolute riot. Nothing is overdone, it’s all just right.
Jason Reitman manages the action sequences so well, with the ghosts, terror dogs and Muncher (Voiced by Josh Gad) flying here there and everywhere, the effects never once overpower the human cast which again is something that made the original so good. The sequence with Ecto-1 chasing Muncher through the town is classic Ghostbusters, with all the energy and excitement that will leave with a stupidly wide grin from ear to ear.
Then there’s the returning cast, who pop up at just the right moment when Reitman has the story whipped to a frenzy, encapsulating the audience with the proceedings so much fun and intense at the time they arrive, they will be literal cheers in the auditoriums up and down the country. It’s all blended together so well. Even a JK Simmons extended cameo role literally rips through at the right moment.
Harold Ramis despite his absence, he and Egon loom large over the whole film. Ghostbusters: Afterlife ends with a beautiful denouement “For Harold” that will likely not leave anyone of a certain age without a dry eye and a lump in their throat. Not only is the film exciting, action packed, brilliantly funny, but it is loaded with emotion too.
Ghostbusters: Afterlife is the sequel the fans deserved, that new fans will love and leaves the legacy intact while embracing a whole new generation of fans. Brava Jason Reitman Brava.