People in their late 40s to early 50s would usually think about Chevy Chase or John Belushi when asked about Saturday Night Live cast members. People in their mid 30s usually think of Adam Sandler, Chris Farley, or Will Ferrell, and people in their teens or 20s think of jimmy Fallon, Kristin Wiig or Tina Fey. Personally I think of Bill Murray and Dan Aykroyd together. I don't know why I think of them because I never watched the old SNL and I didn't watch "Ghostbusters" until I was about 16. When I am asked about Bill Murray and Dan Aykroyd however I don't think of SNL I think of "Ghostbusters".
"Ghostbusters" is a film that knows how to handle its bizarre genre. It is a mix of science fiction, fantasy, and comedy doing them all well, a hard feat to accomplish since those types of movies rarely mix well together.
Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, and Harold Ramis, star as "scientists" who specialize in the paranormal. They have never actually seen anything that is actually ghostly or spectral but they have high hopes. Luckily a ghost appears in the area and they are there to investigate. After failing to talk to the ghost and to not be scared shitless, the trio runs away and decides to open their own ghost-catching business. It wouldn't be a spoiler to say that their business is successful since if it were not then the movie would have ended right there. Besides we all know how the song goes "Who you gonna call?"
Sigourney Weaver plays the trio's first customer and does a nice job not coming off as another damsel in distress, although considering this is Sigourney Weaver we are talking about that is not to hard of a job - seriously watch "Aliens" if you don't believe me. Rick Moranis is also in the film providing comic relief to a comedy; his character is so annoying but after every one of his scenes you cant help but think "Bless his heart".
When I reviewed the film "TRON" I mentioned a lot of the popular science fiction movies that came out in the 80s but conveniently disregarded this one. I wanted to save it for a full review because it doesn't exactly fit squarely into science fiction. Yes it is more of a sci-fi than a comedy but even when the film tries to be serious and engage us with some high concept sci-fi "proton packs", and "Containment units" it is extremely lighthearted and fun. The proton packs are leaf-blower-like machines that are able to shoot beams of light that can trap ghosts, but do NOT cross the streams! The ghosts themselves are never scary; they are funny, cool, and even cute.
The comedy in this movie comes solely from the characters. There is no slapstick, no screwball scenes, no fish-out-of-water scenarios, nothing is being spoofed, and there is no toilet humor (unless you count being slimed as toilet humor).
My review for "The Princess Bride" said that even though there was nothing wrong with the film, it was aimed towards children so I wasn't entertained. This film has nothing wrong with it and is aimed towards the whole family. Naturally that would describe a perfect film right? "Ghostbusters" is far from perfect and nothing really wows you but back in the 80s it was very original and as of today I have yet to see a movie that approaches ghosts with comedy and science fiction. You will like this movie no matter who you are and it will have you singing the theme song for days. Try not to think of it as a sci-fi movie thought because this is a comedy with ghostly special effects.
What about you? What is your favorite SNL cast member? Click here to cast your vote.