Ghostbusters: Afterlife promises to scare up a storm of spooky thrills and nostalgic humour this November. Jason Reitman steps into the shoes of his father Ivan to continue the mythology of the 1984 and 1989 movies, throwing the emphasis onto a new generation of ghostbusting heroes.
Finn Wolfhard and Mckenna Grace are the likeable youngsters who discover a remarkable treasure trove of heritage in their creepy new farmhouse. Carrie Coon drops acidic zingers as their mother, who is grappling with her own past demons, while Paul Rudd is typically endearing as the local schoolteacher who becomes embroiled in the inevitable supernatural shenanigans.
Here's why you need to see Ghostbusters: Afterlife on the biggest Cineworld screen you can find.
1. It's genuinely funny
In all honesty, there are more laughs in the first 10 minutes of Ghostbusters: Afterlife than there were during the entirety of Paul Feig's 2016 reboot. The hand of the ever-acerbic Jason Reitman is evident, albeit neutered down for a family-friendly audience. (We can't imagine the sass of Juno or the darkness of Young Adult would play too well here.) Co-writer Gil Kenan, meanwhile, brings his love of eighties genre cinema, evinced in the earlier likes of Monster House (2006). Together, he and Reitman form a hybrid model that honours the spirit of the original Ghostbusters while also sending it spinning off in new directions.
2. It restores the creepiness of the original
It may be one of the biggest comedy films of all time, but the original Ghostbusters is a lot scarier than people give it credit for. The scenes with Dana Barrett (Sigourney Weaver) being menaced in her apartment by the terror dogs, the minions of evil deity Gozer, strike a genuinely menacing note, particularly the hands-out-of-the-armchair sequence. Afterlife goes some way towards restoring the level of threat that was evident in the first movie, re-establishing key set-pieces and bits of iconography. After all, if we don't believe in the danger posed to the characters, how do we get emotionally invested? The presence of Elmer Bernstein's menacing original themes on Rob Simonsen's score evokes shudders all on its own.
3. It's got spectacle to spare...
Back in 1984, the original Ghostbusters was reliant on pre-CGI effects, namely models, animatronics, forced perspectives and matte paintings. It's a testament to Ivan Reitman's skill, plus that of his cast and crew, that the movie stands up as brilliantly as it does. Of course, a 2021 audience demands something a tad... slicker? Hence why the action-packed CGI spectacle of ghosts rampaging through a small town gets a fresh kick in the pants. Make no mistake, however: the nostalgic attention to detail is there in even the smallest details, including the goosebump-invoking whirring of the proton guns being charged up. (This was taken directly from the 1984 movie's sound mix – how affectionate is that?)
4. ... And heart too
We won't give anything away, but Afterlife is a movie that brims with a sense of legacy. This is most evident in the handing of the baton from Ivan to Jason Reitman. However, the theme of legacy is deployed to intriguing, and often poignant, ways in the movie, as we're presented with a group of characters who are struggling to move on from the past. The notion of ghosts takes on a whole new meaning in this movie, particularly in the final act that may well evoke tears of sadness and joy in equal measure.
5. OG nostalgics and new generation fans can come together
Were you there when the original Ghostbusters was released in theatres? Maybe you missed the movie's theatrical run but caught it during the wave of VHS and TV hype? If you're one of those people, then we might assume that you now have children of your own. Ghostbusters: Afterlife can, therefore, be considered a passing of the baton in more ways than one, a multi-generational experience where parents and kids can assemble for a fun blockbuster amalgamation of past and present. Just make sure you queue up for the big screen experience.
Click here to book your tickets for Ghostbusters: Afterlife. The movie is released in Cineworld cinemas on 18th November.