Monday, June 13, 2016


You know they're remaking Ghostbusters, right? Well, things aren't going well and it's the fault of all you misogynist men!! It's not MY movie that sucks, it's you!! Boo hoo hoo! Good grief.

Let me start with the obvious. Ghostbusters is a classic film. It should not be remade. It is impossible to take a movie like this, where everything in it was just perfect, and improve it... lightening in a bottle cannot happen twice. The best you can do is make a poor knock off. What's more, NO ONE was calling out for this film to be remade because it didn't have any weaknesses that could be fixed or alternatives that could be explored. But the powers that be in Moneywood crave money. So they decided to remake Ghostbusters.

Having decided to start down this path of doom, they hired a hack -- Paul Feig -- who did what hacks always do. He decided to hire current "names" to fill the roles and let them do their thing. In other words, he decided not to make "Ghostbusters," he decided to make a Melissa McCarthy and Kristen Wiig film that uses Ghostbusters as a setting. If you watch the trailer, you will see this. You will see McCarthy doing her "I'm fat and stupid" routine over and over and Wiig doing her "I'm an incompetent drunken slut" routine. So not only does no one want to see Ghostbusters exploited, but the people who would do not want to see a McCarthy/Wiig comedy vehicle. That's like giving Gone With The Wind to Judd Apatow.
That's bad.

Then Feig made his brilliant decision (snicker). He did what hacks always do in this situation. He made sure to change the genders of the characters because that generates controversy and scores free publicity. It outrages the fans who don't want to see the characters they love pointlessly changed and they spread the word because they can't stop talking, it brings the approval of Hollywood feminists because it means women replacing men, and it gives the hack a big smuggie.

Finally, said hack films the most pathetic, washed out, derivative crap you can imagine using the new cast.

Well, they released the first trailer and waited for the kudos to come streaming in. Instead, they got sh*t on. The trailer promptly became the most hated trailer of all time on Youtube. The production was in trouble. So what is a hack to do? Well, Feig and his team have gone on the offensive. They are telling everyone that if you don't like this film, it's because you are a woman hater... a misogynist. Yep. Here's a quote from a recent discussion Feig gave on the subject:
“I have been hit with some of the worst misogynistic stuff,” said Feig, adding that prior to Ghostbusters he was oblivious to the darker sides of the internet. “I used to [hear] that people had haters and I was, like, 'How does that happen?'”
Uh no. The problem isn't that you did the film with chicks. The problem is that (1) you did the film, (2) you made the most derivative crap imaginable -- watch the trailer and you will groan at how overused the jokes are and how oblivious the actresses seem to the fact they are blandly repeating things that have been done a million times, (3) you turned Ghostbusters into a vehicle for two lousy single-note comedians, and (4) you are getting snotty about the criticism.

The first trailer was truly awful. It included things like the fat girl trying to crowd surf at a concert and getting dropped. Yawn. This weekend, I saw a new trailer. It has removed some of the most obviously hack material, but it includes things like one of the characters explaining to each of the others who they are as characters and what their skills are. Talk about hack writing! The rest looks like filler. The audience I saw the trailer with didn't react once to any moment in the trailer. That's how bad it was. It might as well have been an add to go buy insurance in the lobby.

There are times I wish I could short a movie. This thing is a horrible idea done about as poorly as possible and now they are trying to shame people into seeing it because their attempt at generating controversy blew up on them. In fact, I'm laughing that Feig's cynical attempt to anger fans resulted in actual fan anger and has cost him big time. His failure is well deserved.



ScottDS said...

Ya know, I wrote an article about this a year and a half ago and my predictions seem to have come true… in a way I never even thought possible. And thanks to the Sony leak, we know that Paul Feig was never passionate about this - he had a female superhero movie idea in mind but signed up to do this instead. He didn’t want Ivan Reitman to have any say over anything (to be fair, Reitman himself hasn’t directed a good movie in years)…

Riveting stuff!

…and most importantly, he didn’t want to make this a continuation. He wanted to reboot it so we could see the characters start their own business and create their own gadgets from scratch and NOT simply piggyback off the existing Ghostbusters world.

As for all-females, I honestly don’t care. I think the actresses have talent (and I LOVE Kate McKinnon - she’s the bespectacled oddball of the bunch)… but this is another case of the crazies ruining it for the rest of us. Yes, there is a horribly misogynistic element out there, especially in geek culture. But the vast majority of fans (i.e.: me) simply don’t like what they see.

And then they released the trailer. Even the tagline in the trailer assumed it’s a continuation when it isn’t! (This was later rectified.) But as I posted on Facebook, it really does look like every other comedy out there. And the jokes… trying to crowdsurf and then falling?! “That’s gonna leave a mark”?? Are they f—ing kidding?!?!?! Did they accidentally make a Tommy Boy remake?!

And here's my favorite podcast talking about the trailer. They raise valid points.

ScottDS said...

Oh, and screenwriter Max Landis (son of John) put it best:

"If the original film didn't exist, this doesn't look like something you'd want to see."

Michael K said...

/src on/It is obvious Mr. Price is a sexist pig./src off/I was 16 when this film came out and I was totally into it. I bought a Ghostbusters t-shirt. My class went to Columbia Univ. on a field trip and I thought of nothing but this was the university where Murray and company "taught" and I was humming the playing the theme song in my head. One would think I would be part of the target audience but no. Feig commented haters of the film are men wearing pajamas in their 40s who live in their mom's basement. I am in my 40s but I do have a job and my own place. So **** u Feig. The takeover of this film by the Social Justice Warriors (SJW) and the awful trailers means I will not be seeing it. Besides the SJWs it looks like this reboot makes no mention of the original. They did their Stalinesque best to remove the original from history.

tryanmax said... gives the hack a big smuggie.

Oh, gawd! I'm not sure what that is, but I got a mental-visual that I just want to go away!

AndrewPrice said...

Scott, It's painfully obvious that he doesn't give a hoot about this project. It was just a paycheck for him. So he did all the standard hack stuff and now he's shocked that people are mocking him.

AndrewPrice said...

BTW, Scott, I don't think anyone but a handful of people truly care about the genders. That's a myth told for the sake of generating controversy and for leftists who want to feel smug. I think people object to what is obviously an attempt to exploit, and in this case, switching the genders was done purely to generate controversy. I think people are offended by the cynical-ness of the move.

As for the actresses, by the way, I personally think they suck. They are all one-note and not even good notes at that. They fit right in with the other current crop of losers who only fit in Apatow films.

AndrewPrice said...

Michael, The first film was one of those rare films that caught lightening in a bottle and became the perfect film in so many people's eyes. Re-doing one of those films, especially as such an obvious knock-off, is a huge mistake. If you want to redo a film like that, you need an entirely different take. Changing the genders is not a different take. Making it a drama/horror, moving it to the distant past or future, or telling it from the perspective of a different character are all different takes that you could pull off. Just doing a remake/continuation is not.

AndrewPrice said...

tryanmax, LOL! I'd say that the photo of Feig is a pretty good indication of what a hack with a smuggie must look like!

tryanmax said...

My biggest issue with this film is that it's a reboot rather than a sequel. No, we didn't need another sequel either, as GB2 pretty well taught us. But sequels happen, and even a poorly executed one is a testament to the impact of the original.

A reboot, on the other hand, feels like an attempt at erasure. Unless carefully executed, the reboot's very existence suggests something lacking or wrong with the original. What makes a Ghostbusters reboot especially heinous is that it is widely regarded as one of those rare films that simply cannot be improved upon. (Though I am one of the heretics who would entertain digitally cleaning up the compositing.)

The identity politics are just salt in that wound. The original GB had a smart political subtext against ineffectual bureaucracy. The new GB looks to be just the latest in a long line of girl power agitprop. The original story is about people thrust out of their comfort zone rising to new challenges and succeeding--a substantively gender-neutral narrative. The gender-swap suggests the new story will be about women "proving" they can do man things.

Finally, Paul Feig. *sigh* What can I say? He's made his career directing mildly humorous male comedies that just happen to star women. I can't help but feel that every one of his past outings would've been better had they been helmed by a woman.

ScottDS said...

I hope I'm wrong - and I probably am - but just because the main cast is all female doesn't necessarily mean that's what the movie is about. Again I might be wrong but I also hate that people just jump to that conclusion.

But tryanmax hits it best - this is a reboot. Had it been a sincere passing of the torch like The Force Awakens, I guarantee a lot of this mishigas wouldn't exist.

tryanmax said...

On Melissa McCarthy, I don't like the way she basically plays a cartoon character in movies. I know she can do better. My wife got me to watch Gilmore Girls, and hers was probably the character I liked best.

That character was scatterbrained and ditzy, too, so it's clearly a core part of her shtick, but it was authentic when she played that role. Plus, she had an extremely focused and disciplined side when it came to her job as chef, so there was a clear reason why other things escaped the character's attention.

In her movies, I suspect McCarthy is being pigeonholed by directors who tell her, "that thing where you act stupid, do more of that! That's funny!" It's a real shame to know someone is more talented than they're being allowed to show.

On Kristen Wiig, her shtick is too similar to McCarthy's to be in the same movie. Frankly, I'm amazed at how many female comedians play "ditzy" without setting the feminists off. I rather like Wiig's goofy brand of humor when she isn't trying to unnecessarily inject sex into it. It seems incongruous and, frankly, a little creepy. Maybe it's a character choice, but it's a bad one and, again, it makes me think she's being told to do it.

djskit said...

I can't imagine it would be too hard to come up with a plausible sequel: It's 30 years later and the events of 1984 are a distant memory. Some out there deny it even happened and point to a gov't conspiracy. Our vigilance has waned and dark powers are re-assembling for the next battle for the soul of New York...until a plucky group of heroes dig into the truth of the past, re-assemble the technology (cue Bill Murray cameo "Slimer, zaul, stay puff, they’re real, all of them”) and save the day.

tryanmax said...

...just because the main cast is all female doesn't necessarily mean that's what the movie is about.

Absolutely! But there isn't a lot to hang that hope on, which is why a lot of people are drawing the conclusions they are. I've seen every Feig/McCarthy project and they all have a clumsy, barely subtextual "girls can do it, too!" slant. Feig is a careerist white-knight so expecting him to do it again isn't much of a jump, nor is it crazy.

tryanmax said...

BTW, the redesigned ghost trap is stupid. Just had to get that out.

Jason said...

This movie will own opening weekend, as virtually all big budget-flicks with a ton of hype will do, and then plunge heavily the second week and be an afterthought in no time flat. I just doesn't feel that there's a real appetite for this movie and the heavy handedness of Feig to pigeonhole criticism of the movie as misogyny is just erecting the movie's tombstone. Recently, James Rolfe, who plays the "Angry Video Game Nerd," put up a video in which he states simply, he doesn't want to see the movie. Calm, reasoned, none of the overacting or profanity of his AVGN character. The vid is soon bombarded with tons of criticism of him for NOT WANTING TO SEE A MOVIE. Good grief.

shawn said...

I'm going to go out on a limb here and agree with Andrew. If they had really wanted to shake up the status quo, they could have made this a straight up horror/action film. The could have still had an all female team, but not look like yet another weak retread of material done better decades ago.

And then to attack the people watching the lack-luster, un-funny first trailer as misogynists because they didn't like the trailer- another bad move.

If Hollywood wants to do a remake- I think they might be better served by remaking a film that didn't quite make it for whatever reason, but had potential.

My best example of this would be "Soldier" starring Kurt Russell. He's great in it, and there is some decent action, but the movie never reaches it potential for me. It has some stuff to say on forced obsolescence, and growing older, but it never elevates above blandness.

PikeBishop said...

RE: the first trailer, basically all rehashes of the best scenes of the original, to which we ask "why do it then" or, as mentioned before new stuff that falls completely flat, I also have to add, why is Hollywood so racist? Why does the black girl (who my wife just refers to as that ugly girl on Saturday Night Live) have to be your Hollywood stereotype jive talking, street smart cliche? Hey liberal Hollywood is there any reason she couldn't be a PhD scientist as well? NO she's there to "slap the evil out of Melissa McCarthy." Puh-leez! Once again, nothing original here: she's meant to be Winston Zedemore (Ernie Hudson) from the original, the man on the street, regular joe who fits in well with the egg heads. But his character had depth. Go watch the scene in the car with him and Akroyd again, as two men, two complex characters discuss religion and reality, dog tired at the end of a tough day. Bet the "Ugly Girl" and her character have nowhere near that depth.

ScottDS said...

shawn -

If Hollywood wants to do a remake- I think they might be better served by remaking a film that didn't quite make it for whatever reason, but had potential.

I agree 1000% and have actually suggested to Andrew a new column where we take a movie that people have heard of but isn't a beloved classic and propose how we'd remake it today.

tryanmax said...

I love that idea!

AndrewPrice said...

That's definitely something we should do. If you all want to suggest films, feel free.

Shawn, I totally agree about "Soldier." I love moments in the film and the overall concept, but it never achieves its potential.

AndrewPrice said...

Pike, That's a great point. Why can't the black girl be the smart girl for once? Oh, that's right, because Hollywood is all about stereotypes.

BTW, the first time I saw her, I thought she had to be a transsexual.

ScottDS said...

From what I've read, there is more to Leslie Jones' character, including the fact that she's also an NYC historian (I want to say her character is taking night classes for that but I can't be certain)...


Jones' performance certainly doesn't help, nor did that awful first trailer. In fact, I think they wanted Melissa McCarthy to play that role at first.

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