The backlash against the new Ghostbusters movie has been...intense. Like, REAL intense. Its first trailer is the most-disliked trailer ever put on Youtube (yes, worse than Terminator: Genisys) with over 800,000 dislikes as of the publish date of this post. Many notable internet figures have outright REFUSED to even recognize the existence of the movie (or at least taken a big ol' shit on the movie without even seeing it). People are accusing us of being paid off in exchange for writing positively about the film (lol to the idea we're smart enough to arrange something like that).
I don't really get the anger over this - after all, the movie doesn't come out for MONTHS. No one mad at this movie has even seen it yet. The main argument against the film seems to be "hey, you're taking a beloved property and propping it up just to serve as a vehicle for women." Which...I dunno, I'd honestly be okay with it if that were the case. I like Ghostbusters, and women are woefully underrepresented in geek culture. But it seems like the people behind the movie are genuinely passionate about the idea and have crafted something fun and unique.
Mainly, I just think this is a movie worth giving a shot to. It might end up being TERRIBLE - but it also could end up being really great. Here's why you should try to be a little more open-minded:
Here's the main reason why you should remain open-minded to the new Ghostbusters - the creative team behind it has a relatively stellar track record: it's being directed by Paul Feig and starring Melissa McCarthy (and others) - which is the same creative team behind Bridesmaids, The Heat, and last year's Spy.
Maybe you, personally, aren't a big fan of these films - but they're all objectively well-liked critically and successful financially (although I will concede I didn't like The Heat that much - namely for the extended scene where a dude's throat is stabbed and bleeding and oh my god why). At the very least, all are certified fresh on Rotten Tomatoes (Spy at 94%, Bridesmaids at 90%, and The Heat at 64%) and made over $100 million domestically.
And if you're worried about the trailers sucking, here's another thing: a LOT of comedy trailers suck. It's really hard to make beats that work well in the context of a movie work in the much shorter, much choppier editing of a trailer. Hell, the trailers and marketing for Spy all sucked, and that ended up being one of the best comedies of 2015. Even the original trailer for Ghostbusters (1984 and full 'o dudes edition) kinda sucked:
Of course, trailers just worked differently back then, so that might not be a fair comparison. Regardless, if "bad trailers that harm the integrity of a beloved franchise" is your thing, why the hell does the trailer for Terminator Genisys (the one that spoiled the entire movie and revealed the worst, most offensive twist in sci-fi franchise history) have a like-to-dislike ratio of 10:1?!
The point is, Paul Feig gave us Freaks & Geeks, so I will forever have faith in him.
Here's the thing about being mad about ANY remake (or reboot, or rebootquel, or whatever) - it doesn't change anything about the original thing you liked. The original thing you liked will still be there and still be the same thing (unless George Lucas gets his hands on it, that is [Ed. note: Insanely topical and original joke, Andrew, great job.]). And the reboot/remake/re-whatever will actually help new audiences rediscover this world AND the thing you liked so much!
And sure, maybe it won't be great. Maybe it'll be downright bad! That's okay, since - again - it has absolutely no effect on the original thing. And odds are, it will never surpass the original thing in your mind, because the original thing has the advantage of nostalgia (and originality).
But just because YOU have a deep attachment to a thing shouldn't preclude others from enjoying a new version, right? Hell, you probably like a lot of remake/reboot things and aren't even aware of it. Scarface, The Departed, A Fistful of Dollars - all remakes! How would you feel if you found someone who's SUPER protective of the 1932 version of Scarface got all pissy about the remake? You'd probably...not give a shit and tell them to give the new version a chance, right? RIGHT?
(FYI - I'm well aware Infernal Affairs is superior to The Departed, but definitely still leave an angry comment because, frankly, I deserve it)
Also, back to that trailer for Terminator Genisys: it literally replaces the characters you loved with new actors in a far worse, dumber story. There are no versions of the trailer that do not have overwhelmingly positive likes-to-dislikes. Fucking Jai Courtney takes the place of Michael Biehn.
A lot of people seem to think that the existence of this new, female-centric Ghostbusters means that Dan Aykroyd's long-rumored Ghostbusters 3 will never happen now - BECAUSE of the new Ghostbusters. The problem with this kind of thinking is...well, there's a lot of things:
Ghostbusters: The Video Game was basically Ghostbusters 3! So we already have it!
Ghostbusters 2 kinda sucked (at least, compared to the first one)
Dan Aykroyd reapproaching his old classics decades later is scientifically-proven to be the single worst idea known to man. I saw Blues Brothers 2000 in the theaters, and can attest to this.
Hell, most people involved with Ghostbusters 2 have spoken about what a shitty disappointing film it is. Bill Murray repeatedly blocked efforts for a filmed version of Ghostbusters 3 because he wanted to stop producing inferior sequels to the original that continued to denigrate the characters. The fact is, the creative mind of Dan Aykroyd hit its peak in the mid-80s and has been on a steady decline ever since, and it's doing a disservice to those characters to keep trotting them out - older and older - and reminisce about the first movie being good.
And that's the thing - THOSE CHARACTERS (Venkman, Spengler, Stantz, Zeddemore, Melnitz, whatever Slimer's last name was, et al) were great, and continuing to make worse sequels takes away from what made that first movie so special. There are almost NO good comedy sequels for a reason (with a few minor but notable exceptions, including the recent 22 Jump Street).
The new Ghostbusters is the ideal case for a Ghostbusters sequel - same fun premise, but a new set of characters and a new creative team to take advantage of that fun premise.
...plus, again, it's not saying Kristen Wiig is the new Venkman. She's an entirely separate, different character. Terminator Genisys said that Linda Hamilton's Sarah Connor was now Emilia Clarke, and the trailers didn't get ripped apart nearly as much for some goddamn reason.
Kate McKinnon's hair being a tribute to The Real Ghostbusters'* version of Egon is my favorite thing in the world. I grew up loving The Real Ghostbusters - and being a stupid dorky nerd, Egon was my favorite. I liked the movie, but I LOVED the cartoon.
*it's called that because there was ANOTHER version of Ghostbusters that actually came BEFORE the Ghostbusters we know and love, and they had the rights to the name when applied to a TV cartoon, so the Ghostbusters movie cartoon had to be changed to The Real Ghostbusters. Also the original had a blue ape that helped out the Ghostbusters, and a talking car.
*The subtitle of the last Terminator movie was ACTUALLY "Genisys." That's literally a thing that they did. It involved John Connor turning into a terminator and completely erasing the original movies from continuity.
Seriously, internet, WHAT THE HELL?
How did the internet not put up this much of a shitshow over Terminator: Genisys? That movie literally DOES go back to the beloved originals and say "FUCK YOU!" to them. It has a Nice Grampa T-800 destroying the original movie. It makes the hero of the franchise into a mindless baddie. HOW THE FUCK DID YOU NOT GET THIS PISSY ABOUT THAT BULLSHIT, INTERNET?
Like, if the trailers for the new Ghostbusters had Kristen Wiig traveling back in time and murdering Venkman when he was still working at Columbia and Melissa McCarthy saying she's the new Ray Stantz, I'd GET the anger. But as is, I just see new Ghostbusters movie that seems to have a lot of potential.
It could be good. It could be awful. But give it a fucking chance, because Ghostbusters is a fun concept and we don't get enough sci-fi paranormal comedy these days.