Hey - did you hear there's a new Ghostbusters movie out? If you've been on the internet for the past several months, you probably haven't heard a peep about it. But it's out and - believe it or not - it's pretty good! It seems pretty impossible to walk out of the movie and not be completely in love with Kate McKinnon's Holtzmann.
That all being said, we have some questions about the movie that will bother us until we find out whether Kevin's team made it to the hide 'n seek finals or not.
Gotta start this out with a (probably obvious) one - what exactly is the deal with ghosts in this movie? It might sound over-obvious, but for something so essential to the very premise of Ghostbusters, it does a pretty crummy job of explaining the mechanics of the film's otherworldly specters. For the most part, every ghost is human (or at least humanoid, like Slimer), indicating ghosts in this world are the lost souls of dead humans...but then there are ones like the winged demon ghost at the concert and the balloon float ghosts after Rowan takes over Times Square that throw this theory out the window.
Let's start with the winged demon ghost - are we supposed to believe there was a living demon at some point and this is its soul? That seems to be the only possible explanation. But we're left to just assume that this world has actual demons running around (in addition to all the ghosts) because the movie never bothers to give us any insight into what the deal is with ghosts.
Note that Slimer presents his own problem (which is present in the original Ghostbusters as well) - since every ghost pretty much looks just like its living form (albeit glowier and deader), was Slimer some kind of fat, legless guy with no neck? And now there's also a girl-version of that?
...was....was Girl Slimer his sister??? They definitely look related.
Almost forgot - the parade float balloon ghosts...what? Are these ghosts of inanimate objects? And - wait - they can be killed with a physical attack from a knife? If regular weapons work on ghosts, why bother with the proton packs and various radioactive/laser technology?
If ghosts are central to the premise of your movie, maybe take like one second to explain how they work, otherwise the dramatic stakes are gonna be a little out of whack.
These Ghostbusters don't have the same benefits that the 80s ones had - they have a lot less money, New York City real estate costs have skyrocketed, and there is a serious deficit of ghosts giving one of the members oral sex in the middle of a montage. But most importantly, they don't have a giant system of storage units dedicated solely to holding the captured ghosts (and pissing off EPA goons). In fact, beyond the one trap that Holtzmann built, they really don't seem to have any plan OR desire to capture the ghosts - they don't have the space or the resources to do so.
Which is made more and more explicit when Holtzmann presents her new ghost-fighting weapons, including a ghost-shredder and ghost-grenades.
The new Ghostbusters are actively and solely trying to MURDER THESE SOULS. These are actual souls - the last and most pure essence of living beings - being completely obliterated without hesitation. Say what you will about the indefinite imprisonment by the original Ghostbusters, at least they weren't straight up shredding souls to pieces.
So - Rowan's plan was to kill himself (by electrocuting himself with the ghost amplification engine) and just, like, hope he came back as an uber-powerful ghost with a whole bunch of abilities that no other ghost had ever displayed? Sure, he'd researched Abby and Erin's book pretty obsessively, but he was taking a pretty HUGE leap in killing himself and crossing his fingers that he'd come back as a ghost who could transform himself and possess others.
Still a better plan than a painting trying to possess a baby, but still a pretty stupid plan.
Rowan's powers (post-suicide) are pretty insane - he has the power to possess anyone (and have super-strength and flight when in control), he can completely transform his ghost-form into anything he can imagine, and he has the ability to completely control the bodies of everyone around him (which he displays by making all of the law enforcement folks take a dance stance).
With regards to that last one in particular - why wouldn't he just use that against the Ghostbusters? He can literally control anything and anyone he wants - which seems to fit in nicely with Rowan's belittled weirdo personality - you'd think he'd just wanna use THAT ability to force the Ghostbusters to freeze (or just kill themselves).
Again, still did a better job executing his plan than the painting who couldn't even successfully take over a baby.
Sorta a minor complaint - but how in the world did Erin get a jumpsuit AND a proton pack if she couldn't get back to the group's Chinatown HQ and when Slimer had the group's Ectomobile? And since she DID have a proton pack on, why would she ASSUME she could stab the ghost-float with a friggin' knife?!
The Ghostbusters don't really seem to be overly concerned about the danger they're putting everyone around them in - they're using untested nuclear-powered lasers in subway tunnels, crowded theaters, alleyways, and more. These are not abandoned or evacuated areas - they're usually pretty public places where there could be a lot of casualties if someone aims just sliiightly off.
But maybe worse is Erin's deicision to unleash the winged demon ghost JUST to prove a point - this thing could have killed hundreds of people at the concert and (once released) actually DOES kill ghost-skeptic Bill Murray. Even if she wouldn't have EXPECTED that to happen, she had to know she was putting a lot of people in danger by unleashing a demon ghost into the world, right?
But weirdly, no one seems concerned about any of this - the mayor's office is more interested in painting them as frauds (which they're not) instead of dangerous irresponsible laser-shooters who carelessly release demon ghosts into the wild (which they totally are). Kinda weird that the first Ghostbusters team to NOT be sent to jail for part of the movie are the ones that might deserve it the most.
The movie is stuffed to the gills with nods and winks to the original - cameos from pretty much every single original cast member, subtle-ish nods to the original movie (Erin pounding on the glass window of the restaurant), really too-obvious nods to the original movie (Zuul!) - but didn't do anything with the original film's most iconic moment: when, for some ungodly reason, a ghost goes down on Dan Aykroyd during a montage.
C'mon, Ghostbusters - give us a deleted scene where Abby gets some oral pleasure from a ghost. You owe it to the fans.