Ghostbusters – Daily Movie Review (02.01.2013)
Review of Ghostbusters (1984) with Bill Murray
Parapyschology scientists Dr. Egon Spengler (Harold Ramis), Dr. Peter Venkman (Bill Murray) and Dr. Raymond Stantz work at the Columbia University. They lose their jobs and have no idea what to do at first. It is not long before they realise they could never work at a company. You know those “demand results”. So the three choose to open their own business. The trio becomes the Ghostbusters. Setting up headquarters in a retired firehouse they wait for their first calls. At first no one seems to have any ghost problems. But soon supernatural activities increase in New York City and the Ghostbusters are ready to take the heat. Who you gonna call?
I first saw Ghostbusters first at the age of nine. I was a fan of the cartoon The Real Ghostbusters and even had action figures. You know the Ghostbusters, Slimer, the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man, Ecto-1 – the whole deal. When I watched the cartoon I did not even know it was based on a movie! As soon as I found out, I HAD to see it :-). And I immediately loved it as much as the series. The later is also still great and holds up. Well, it’s impossible to write a review that can truely explain all the levels on which Ghostbusters works. This is the archetype of the perfect horror comedy! Ghostbusters mixes a unique premise with fantastic special effects (in times long before CGI), great acting and improvisation and an all perfect cast. The banter between the Ghostbusters could have been boring technobabble. But one line is funnier than the other. Be it the naive but goodhearted Ray, the always serious Egon, the ironical Venkman or the practical Winston. Ghostbusters includes countless quotable lines.
Would somebody make a movie like this today it would probably become a soulless CGI fest. Although special effects play a big part in some action scenes, it’s the characters that make Ghostbusters so good. You really feel the chemistry between Akroyd, Murray and Ramis. They are perfect together and nobody could have manufactured this artificially. Even the secondary characters like Louis Tully (Rick Moranis), Janine Melnitz (Annie Potts) and Dana Barret (Sigourney Weaver) are extremely memorable.
Although Ghostbusters is first and foremost a comedy it can be scary at times. You immediately laugh after the scares, but they are there! So Ghostbusters not only works as a comedy, but also as a horror movie. Of course there are science fiction elements as well. Which kid growing up in the eighties did not want to own his very own proton pack :-)? It is no wonder Ghostbusters is still one of the most popular comedies of all time. There is even much talk about a Ghostbusters 3 now. In my opinion they should put the idea to rest without Bill Murray. Or they should do an extension of the franchise in some way. For example new recruits could establish a new Ghostbuster unit in some other town. Something like the Ghostbusters Chicago.
Well enough about Ghostbusters 3. Who knows if that will ever come along? Ghostbuster is a movie for the ages. I still love to sing along to the title track by Ray Parker Jr. every time I hear it. It is hard to imagine any horror comedy, hell any comedy, that could be better than this.
Sadly the Blu-ray does not hold up to the high level of the movie itself. It is based on an old DVD master that has overblown contrasts. The color timing has also been changed, giving this a slight blue tint. Instead of the red, warm hue older masters had. So the picture quality is only average. The audio quality shines in the other hand. The blu-ray is also jampacked with extras, which is pretty cool.
Ghostbusters is one of my alltime favourite movies. And I am pretty sure this will not change for as long as I live. It’s a great comedy with an excellent cast, great story and effects and also a lot of heart. If there is anyone out there who has not watched this yet: Check it out!
My Score: 10 / 10