In my opinion, Ghostbusters 2016 was one of the summer’s best comedies that did not get the praise (or revenue) it deserved. The Internet put an unfair amount of pressure on the cast and crew. Ghostbusters 2016 got put in a double bind: if it deviated too much from the original, fans would complain it was not staying true to the spirit of Ghostbusters, but if it imitated its predecessor too much, then it is just trying to be a gender-swapped copy. While certainly not perfect by any means, labeling Ghostbusters as the worst film ever made – or even the worst reboot ever made – is unfair. While the basic storyline isn’t anything earth-shattering in itself (instead of “boy meets girl,” think “girl meets ghost” times four), the cast – a perfect blend of old and new – elevates it.
After years of studying, writing, and networking, Erin Gilbert (Kristin Wiig) is finally up for tenure at Columbia University. However, fate intervenes, and she is forced to give up the job she thought she loved for her true dream. Instead of teaching physics to a lecture hall full of coeds, she ends up trekking all over New York City chasing down ghosts. If that sounds like a tough job for someone insulated from the world in the ivory tower of academia, fortunately, she has an unforgettable crew of ladies to back her up: her former best friend (and fellow co-author of Ghosts from Our Past (Both Literally and Figuratively): The Study of the Paranormal) Abby Yates (Melissa McCarthy), former MTA employee \ ghost neophyte Patty Tolan (Leslie Jones), and Abby’s new research partner, zany engineer Jillian Holtzmann (Kate McKinnon). As they battle ghosts, the team’s friendship is a bastion against the world’s disbelief – even as they have to save it from a power-crazed loner (Neil Casey) intent on bringing ghosts from the spirit realm into the human world to wreak havoc.
Will the millennial Ghostbusters make an impact equal to its 80s’ forefather? Unlikely. However, that does not make it unwatchable. On the contrary – not watching Ghostbusters means missing out on a fun, frenetic, comedy about female friendship…plus ghosts.