We are pleased to bring you a great opinion piece from The Awesome Muse contributing writer, Cami Kidder. Cami is a documentarian, cinematographer and editor. Thank you, Cami, for sharing your viewpoint on the new Ghostbusters with us.
There are no spoilers in this article.
We’ll let Cami take it from here….
Who ya gonna call? And freak out?
Ghostbusters. Why is the Internet FREAKING out over the new Ghostbusters movie? And in a bad way. It’s not like this is the first remake of an older, beloved film.
The original film was released in June 1984. And although you might be like me and think that was just a few years ago, it was actually THIRTY-TWO years ago. How many 32-year old movies do you think the average 18-year old has watched? It might sound like I am defending the movie studios and their near obsession with remaking and rebooting. This is not my intent, but this is show business, not show show.
Is remaking movies like Ghostbusters that different from producing revivals on Broadway?
Is remaking movies that much different from producing revivals on Broadway? Shouldn’t other actors be able to play amazing roles? Shouldn’t storytelling benefit from advances in technology? Shouldn’t the best stories be presented to younger, newer audiences?
We live in a disposable society
Frankly, we live in a disposable society. Media is produced and consumed at a faster and faster rate, and everything is given precious little time today to find an audience. There is much more competition for the consumer’s entertainment dollar than ever before.
Today’s movies typically get a 14-day, or a 2-weekend theatrical release. According to Box Office Mojo’s all-time run list, all the top 10 movies (the original Ghostbusters is #7) except #2 were in theaters in the 1980’s and screened for an average of 12 weeks. I can understand the appeal of the reboot from a business perspective of the tried and true, as long as it is also fresh and new. It shouldn’t be that hard. This is a business full of creative people.
Back to the NEW Ghostbusters. It has the distinction of having the most disliked movie trailer on YouTube, and it’s #9 on the most disliked YouTube videos of all-time list. That’s nuts, right?
The new Ghostbusters Trailer
It’s a movie trailer, what’s to be so angry about? Granted I’d prefer there was more original material in this trailer, and the assumption is that the film won’t be original because of the trailer, but we don’t actually know that.
As of today, July 7, 2016, the Official Trailer has had 35,006,084 views with 261,087 users recording LIKE and 912,32 recording DISLIKE. For this blog I broke my rule and read some comments. A high percentage were rude, mean and appeared to be from under educated trolls bashing for the sake of bashing.
However FelisTerras offered what might be fair criticism: “It wasn’t as if they had to make this from scratch; there were several scripts by Ramis and Akroyd, the cartoon series (honestly, not a fan of, but they got it right) and tons of reference material. They could have just taken everything existing together, throw out what doesn’t work, update/upgrade it, make it look decent and call it Ghostbusters 3. People would have been ok with that.”
If you hate it because it’s about women, that’s a non-starter
Which brings us to my main point. If you dislike this movie because Hollywood has frustrated and exhausted you with endless remakes, that might be fair, but you could feel that about many other films recently. This movie in particular has the added burden of being an all-female remake, and that brings its own special set of haters. Speaking to The Guardian last week, Director Paul Feig commented on all the negativity surrounding the film “Some of it is that people don’t want an old property touched – I’m sympathetic to that. But the ones who are hating it because it’s about women? That’s just a non-starter.” Exactly, I say!
However IF you are someone who thinks that Hollywood also has a serious gender inequity problem, I suggest that you support this film and buy a ticket for opening weekend. Opening weekend box office numbers are the main barometer Hollywood uses to gauge a film’s success. While I disagree with this practice, it is what they do. My concern is that if this movie fails, it will be a referendum on movies with female casts, not on reboots and remakes. There have been, and will be plenty of other movies to make the point that we want innovative stories. High profile remakes have flopped before, and yet Hollywood keeps making them, and their directors and their actors kept working. This is too important of an opportunity to take the risk that these actresses are as bulletproof. I bought my tickets today for opening day! I hope you will too.