In Response to the Honest Trailer of ‘Ghostbusters’ (2016)

This Tuesday brought around the Honest Trailer for the remake of Ghostbusters (2016).  Based on it’s past history with trolls and threats from Ghostheads that love the original so much, Screen Junkies, the new media studio responsible for the Honest Trailer series, turned off their comment section, preventing anyone from spewing random hate for the content as well as allowing people to give criticism, praise, or suggestions that they usually ask for in the comments section.  After watching this multiple times, I needed to get some points off my chest, and publicly correct or justify what the trailer mentions, but I need more space than 140 characters, and I’m not going on a Twitter rant.

Note:  These comments are made in order of appearance and mentions in the video.

1. Having Donald Trump in your video should be a trigger warning within itself.

2. There is actually some chemistry in this movie between our four heroines.  It’s Wiig’s and McCarthy’s that feels really stilted for some reason.

3. Not all of them are the Bill Murray character.  Kate McKinnon is clearly Harold Ramis’ female doppelgänger.  Her Holtzmann is the brains behind the team’s tools, and constantly uses physics mumbo-jumbo to explain the supernatural to make it grounded in this world.  Melissa McCarthy is Dan Ackroyd by size and Leslie Jones is Ernie Hudson for diversity reasons.

4. Yes the villain sucks, but that’s because a) Rowan and our heroines are both outsiders and b) they take it out differently.  Rowan is the stereotypical creeper that no one wants to be with, but randomly uses the supernatural as a way to prove his existence.  The girls are all up against society because of what they study and believe them, and they prove that they are right about ghosts by creating this group.

5. This one is confusing because I think there was a difference in timeline distinguishing between director Paul Feig and the studio.  From interviews I have seen, Feig really wanted this story to stand apart from the original, but pay homage.  The studio insisted that the film became part of the universe already built (hence why you get “30 years ago” in the infamous trailer).  It also explains why the original cast pop up the way they do, but seem very disconnected from their original Ghostbusters counterparts.

6. I really enjoyed those soup jokes because New Yorkers know how to be pissed off when their delivery order is incorrect.  Also, this is what Melissa McCarthy is reduced to when she can’t do as much as she can with an R rating.

7. If you watch the full movie, with the credits, there are three dance sequences.  And that added fourth one looks bad.  I will give you that.

8. THIS IS WHY MAKING THIS GHOSTBUSTERS NEEDED TO BE A HUGE SUCCESS.  Despite being everything wrong with Hollywood, it was the one time to prove that strong, flawed, and original female protagonists can gross over $100 million at the box office.  The fact that it has cost Sony $50 million in write-offs and redoing the Ghostbusters plan to be reduced to animation is the reason why female-led films can’t be a one-and-done thing.  This just reinforces Sony and other corporate studios to continue making films about men with issues, and the most likely time you will see a woman on screen is to be the love interest or get porked.

9. Yes, that Fall Out Boy cover of the theme song is absolute garbage, and it constantly grates my ears whenever I hear it.

10. Yes, this film is the most political thing in a year with a messed-up election.  But we can correct it by not trolling people just for being something that is not your memories of the original.

I think that it is totally okay to point out that comedy is extremely subjective, but that should be for everything, including TV shows, books, music, art pieces, etc.  Everything is subjective.  But rushing to judgement on the fact that it is bad makes it very unlikely that society will ever get the chance again to have another female-led movie in the blockbuster industry (excluding Wonder Woman).  Sure, it’s flawed, but I actually like it because even though many of the jokes fall flat and derive on bashing men as much as the original bashed on women, it is the characters that made me want to go see this movie in a theater.  Twice.  I want to see a sequel so I can watch these characters again.  I originally didn’t want to go see it because of how awful the visual effects looked in the trailer.  The fact that it became the face of the gender wars is what made me want to pull ten dollars out of my pocket to go and supported it, and I liked it against all odds.

Here’s what I have to say about it.  The trolls won.  Because it is considered automatically a flop, it seems that the men have won the gender wars.  If you believe in gender equality in cinema, do yourself a favor and buy a copy of this movie.  You don’t have to watch it.  You don’t have to open it if you bought a DVD or Blu-Ray copy.  Just buy it, and prove to Sony and the other corporations out there that women can star and lead in major Hollywood films like the rest of the men can.

Author: Samantha Felmus

Samantha Felmus is a writer with a cinematic vision. She holds a BA in Liberal Arts with concentrations in film from Sarah Lawrence College and a MFA in writing and producing for television from Long Island University - Brooklyn, specifically the TV Writer's Studio Program. In her downtime, she likes to cook and watch all the random things available on Netflix, Hulu, and YouTube. She currently resides in New York City.

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