“Ghostbusters” (2016) can’t compare to its predecessor

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“Ghostbusters” (2016) is a modernized version of the original, made to fit gender and racial norms that are in our society today. The plot falls along the same lines as the original but doesn’t have the same euphoric feel. It was made for a noble purpose of making up for mistakes, but is the remake fully necessary? 

The original “Ghostbusters” film can be described in one word: simple. It fits every racial and gender norm of the 1980s; there’s a female secretary, a completely male group of protagonists, and a majority white cast. The original includes many sexist norms, not uncommon in movies of the time, including weak and two-dimensional female characters. From this, the casual misogyny of films like the Ghostbusters cast would evoke criticism from our society if they had come out today. For this reason, I have to give the remake credit for addressing their predecessors’ mistakes and creating a strong group of female protagonists. 

Both of the movies involve a group of friends teaming up to put a stop to harmful paranormal activity. That said, in the original, they fight purely paranormal beings. In the remake, they are also faced with malicious human intervention, tasked with outwitting a criminal mastermind. In the new “Ghostbusters” the team deals with the usual ghouls combined with stopping a mad man from opening a portal between dimensions. 

The original plot is simplistic, with one antagonist that has an uncomplicated motive. Making the plot more complex is an interesting risk that the remake took, as the more complicated storyline could have disappointed people who loved the original. Unfortunately, the intricate plot is hard to follow and doesn’t let the audience truly enjoy the ending moment like the original.

Furthermore, the animation is not as playful as the first movie. The new line of “ghosts” have human features and form, but are not as charming and juvenile as the iconic comic green ghost, “Slimer”  in the original. The new technology that has developed for computer-generated imagery (CGI) in the past couple of years has been nothing short of revolutionary, but in this case it took away the quirky, unique aspect from the first “Ghostbusters.”

The original “Ghostbusters” is a classic. This means that for a new version to surpass it, the remake would have to be prodigious. The remake, frankly, does not do this. From the plot all the way to the animation, it just can’t compete with the original. The comedy is appreciated, but takes away from the overall mystery of the movie. 

The new plot is more sophisticated and just doesn’t produce the same sense of fundamental satisfaction produced by the 1984 Ghostbusters that the plot provided in the original. Unlike the original, the new “Ghostbusters” is not a movie that I’m going to remember for the rest of my life. The movie isn’t horrible, it just doesn’t meet the standards set by its predecessor.

Promotional material provided courtesy of: Columbia Pictures Ghost Corps (Sony Pictures)