Apologies to Greg Clark in advance.
Theoretically we will see a new Ghostbusters movie hit screens sometime next year. My math tells me that is the year 2010, the year we make contact.
- That is twenty-six years after the original film.
- That is twenty years after the sequel.
- That is about twenty years after Ghostbusters mattered.
I have no qualms with the people who claim that Ghostbusters is a classic. It is. The second one is atrocious. The cartoons are mediocre. Bill Murray has treated the franchise like an albatross for two decades. Ray Parker, Jr. stole Huey Lewis music for the theme song and had to settle out of court. It’s an eighties classic, something which truly embodies the best aspects of the era that originated it.
Yet people salivate for more and have for twenty years, always buzzing about a third Ghostbusters film even though the second film pretty much proved that the thing was better off as a one and done. Every time Dan Ackroyd mentioned ghosts or busting or Ernie Hudson’s private life in an interview the hype machine came roaring back to life.
For Ghostbusters. A horror comedy with a massively high concept made great by a perfect cast, a comedic director with something to prove, in a decade where the playfully sarcastic work by the leads paired perfectly with an audience not overburdened with genrebending mass market entertainment. The stars were in their prime as comedians and everything clicked.
But I don’t understand keeping a torch lit for the franchise all these years. It’s a great film to share with new generations (ignoring the sequel), and am in fact fact sharing it with my daughter next week [today she watched both Gremlins movies]. To see the bloated and paycheck seeking talent back in the jumpsuits battling modern CGI beasts and revisiting old jokes doesn’t seem worth it. It’s a neat curiosity but other than allowing fans another look what’s the value? Is it a kid’s film? Is it really viable as a tentpole movie? Would it be better to see Bill Murray doing a Wes Anderson film instead?
I just don’t feel the need to have my nostalgia nerve flicked any more. I want new. NEW. New ideas. Not this. Especially now. Ghostbusting needs a rest (did we learn nothing from the shitfest that is Luigi’s Mansion?). There’s apparently still loads of residual love for the franchise, let’s leave it at that.
Of course, sequels are perfectly reliable after well over a decade between entries:
The Two Jakes.
Blues Brothers 2000.
The Phantom Menace.
Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.