Friday, June 3, 2011

Ten Statements About....GHOSTBUSTERS II (1989)

"Why are we back?  Frankly, I have a car payment, and Dan
needs to finance Nothing But Trouble..."
"Kitten, I think what I'm saying, is that sometimes, shit happens, someone has to deal with it, and who ya gonna call?"

1) This movie suffers from a common factor that kills far, far too many sequels...namely that no one has anything new to say with the characters, so they do everything they can to recreate the format of the original. And because what we're getting is the equivalent of changing the drapes in the hopes of convincing us you've redecorated the whole apartment, we don't buy into the need for the film in the least.

2) The need to recreate the format of the original is so great, three of the characters are changed in such a way that they don't function as the original characters anymore. And in the case of Annie Potts' Janine, it diminishes her to the point where she's not likable.

3) Look, I know that Harold Ramis stopped acting because, well, he didn't like it very much...but it's a shame. There are moment when he's able to convey volumes with a raised eyebrow or a slight, faint smirk, and I can only think of the great characters he could have fashioned if he had the passion for the craft.

Peter MacNichols is possessed by the spirit of Balkie.
4) What makes Peter MacNichols' Janoz work is not his peculiar 'foreign' accent, but the odd--and I presume improvised--asides he makes constantly his breath. It gives his thankless role a strange kind of life.

5) As a villain, Vigo sucks. No, really. He does.

6) One of the worst signs that this is a sequel without a new idea in its head is how the franchise suddenly gets the logo of the new film. It's as if they're admitting straight out that this film was made not because they had a desire to return to these characters, but wanted to make Lots O' Money. All the new gadgets further drives this point home.

7) It's rather interesting how this film was influenced by The Real Ghostbusters cartoon series. The visuals for Janine and 'Slimer' are taken whole from the cartoon.

8) After you've vanquished the Dickless Wonder that is William Atherton, having to contend with the doughy, ill-formed Kurt Fuller isn't a challenge.

Why no one looked at this picture and realized
'This Cannot Happen' is beyond me.
9) After the vanquishing of Vigo (which takes far longer than it really should have), the coda just goes on for far too long, ending in a truly lame final sight gag.

10) Wow, there's even less reason for Ernie Hudson to be in this film...and I wonder if any of the other actors realized how, ummmm, insulting some of the stuff they give Winston to do is. be fair, there are some good moments throughout the film. But you never escape the fact that this is nothing more than a money-grab, and that just drags it down to being sunstandard.

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