Wednesday, 11 February 2009

Things What Are Great #4 - Ghostbusters

(I kind of deviated off my original intention a little bit with the last one of these - my intention was to look at things that are so ingrained within my cultural mindset that I take it for granted that everyone else knows about them too. They probably do but, just in case, here's another one for you today...)

In a nutshell:- Who you gonna call?

The Basics:- OK, for anyone who's been living under a rock for the last 20-odd years, it's a simple tale of four not-quite-so-young men trying to catch them some ghosts (of which they ain't afraid) before New York gets sucked into Hell. It's got ghosts, ghost-busting and a man in love with a woman who occasionally turns into a dog. A pretty straightforward apocalyptically supernatural love story then.

Why's It So Great Then?:- There are oh-so-many reasons for this film's sheer greatness - the chemistry of the lead actors, Bill Murray's delivery of pretty much any line in the film, the demented imaginative turns that lead to a giant marshmallow man stamping on the city in a Godzilla-stylee, the insanely cheesily catchy theme tune, the endless quotability of the lines - but I think that the key thing that has lead to it's endurance as a classic comedy film is that it is that rarest of beasts:- a family comedy film that's genuinely funny without being patronising towards children and too moronic for adults to enjoy. It strikes just the right balance - something which few films strive to do these days and fewer actually achieve.

Surely Some Of It Must Be Rubbish:- Nope, not a bit of it. It's as entertaining a film now as it was then - my friends kids enjoy it just as much as we did. OK, sure, a few of the bluescreen effects don't really stand up to a lot of scrutiny in these heavily CGI'ed times in which we live but the model design can't be faulted. Slimer, the Devil Dogs, the Stay-Puft Marshmallow Man - they're all great creations.

So We Should Seek Out This Thing Of Which You Speak?:- As there are somehow people out there who haven't seen Star Wars (I know, I have difficulty understanding the concept, too), then it stands to reason that there are people out there who haven't seen this film either. If you've been dismissing it for the last couple of decades because you thought it was a silly kids film, I urge you to sit and watch it. You will not regret it. All together now...


If there's somethin' strange in your neighbourhood...


7 comments:

TrodoMcCracken said...

I'm offended that I was not mentioned once in this post since I obviously started the trend of blogging about the ghostbusters.

Jesus Quintana said...

Bill Murray as the self-absorbed asshole "Big Ern" in Kingpin (oh wait, that's Bill Murray in every movie) is equally satisfying.

Mari said...

Who you gonna call...

I love Rick Moranis, when he asks Sigourney Weaver to his party and tells her it's a write-off...

The Masked Philosopher said...

And what's your take on Ghostbusters 2?

Irish Gumbo said...

Quite right! I grew tired of the theme song very quickly (it was played at school dances for cryin' out loud!) but spot on with the analysis. funny and eminently quotable!

TishTash said...

Thank you, Baldy Fella, now the song will be playing in my head for weeks until I finally run into a brick wall to make it stop. Thank you. Thank you.

That Baldy Fella said...

Trodo - But I was thinking about posting this before any of you so therefore I win. QED.

Jesus - Yeah, actually, I'll watch Bill Murray in pretty much anything. With the possible exception of Garfield.

Mari - It's the finest thing he's done. I always like the way he says, "Yes, have some" when copying Egon.

MP - Good question. It's got some good moments and I enjoyed it a lot at the time but I don't think it holds up to repeated viewings. Overall, it's not greater than the sum of the it's parts.

IG - Oh, come on, it's a classic! The finest thing Ray Parker Jr' s ever done. OK, it's pretty much the only thing he's ever done...

TishTash - I live to serve, I live to serve. "An invisible man, sleeping in your bed." Is this helping?