Bridesmaids’ co-stars Kristen Wiig and Melissa McCarthy strap on their proton packs and give 1984’s beloved supernatural comedy an enjoyably goofy, girl-power reboot. New York City’s ghosts get vanquished, of course, and so do the Internet trolls who found the idea of an all-female Ghostbusters so objectionable.
The new team comprises Wiig’s tightly buttoned-up university physicist, Erin, her formerly estranged childhood friend, McCarthy’s ghost buff Abby, geeky tech genius Jillian (Kate McKinnon) and subway worker Patty (Leslie Jones), plus their beefy but dim male secretary Kevin (a hilarious Chris Hemsworth). As before, the story finds a gathering storm of paranormal activity threatening to overwhelm New York. Sure enough, the band are soon up to their necks in ectoplasmic slime.
The new movie is far from perfect. It sags in places and some of the gags are pretty lame. And there are times, particularly towards the end, when the CGI effects threaten to swamp the stars. Yet for the most part, this Ghostbusters really does work.
There are affectionate nods to the original – such as the scene in which the team find they cannot afford the rent on the iconic firehouse occupied by their male precursors. And there are more pointed jabs at cinematic and societal sexism. The overall mood, though, is one of good-humoured, warm-hearted fun.
The stars gel beautifully, but it’s the lesser-known McKinnon who steals the film with her joyously kooky, radiantly charismatic turn
Certificate 12. Runtime 116 mins (Extended edition 134 mins). Director Paul Feig
Ghostbusters is available Blu-ray, 3D Blu-ray, 4K Ultra HD & Digital Download from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. The Extended Edition on Blu-ray, 3D Blu-ray, 4K Ultra HD features 15 minutes of previously unseen footage.