Ghostbusters: Afterlife honors Harold Ramis and builds upon the legacy of the original.
After several decades of anticipation, the Ghostbusters franchise has returned with a sequel to the beloved first two films. The world first fell under the spell of Ghostbusters in 1984, forever cementing its place in pop culture. Recently, I had the extraordinary privilege of attending an early screening during New York Comic Con, immediately following a panel featuring the cast and directors Jason and Ivan Reitman.
In “Ghostbusters: Afterlife,” the story unfolds as a single mother and her two children relocate to a quaint small town. As they unravel their connection to the original Ghostbusters and the hidden legacy left behind by their grandfather, the stage is set for a new chapter in the franchise.
“Ghostbusters: Afterlife” defies expectations, delivering a fresh and exciting experience. The film is filled with unexpected moments carefully shielded from the trailers. Jason Reitman proves to be the perfect franchise steward, skillfully crafting a Ghostbusters film that pays homage to the original while paying respects to the late Harold Ramis. The central focus on Spengler’s grandchildren, portrayed by Finn Wolfhard and McKenna Grace, is a stroke of brilliance. However, Grace truly shines in her role, embodying the essence of Spengler as seen in the first two films. Newcomer Logan Kim and the timeless Paul Rudd inject a dose of humor that appeals to Ghostbusters fans across generations.
The film is a visual treat.
It features a wealth of impressive practical effects, with a minimal reliance on CGI. Even the digitally created ghosts and creatures come to life magnificently on the big screen. The narrative of this new installment is nearly flawless, capturing the heart and soul of Ivan Reitman’s creation from 37 years ago. While watching “Ghostbusters: Afterlife,” you’ll be riding an emotional rollercoaster, experiencing warmth, poignancy, and waves of nostalgia. And yes, the return of the original cast is a delightful surprise.
I give “Ghostbusters: Afterlife” 4 out of 5 stars. It resurrects the iconic franchise with reverence and heart. This film has also set the stage for a promising future for the Ghostbusters franchise. Harold Ramis would undoubtedly have been immensely proud of this cinematic achievement, and fans will be cheering throughout the movie.
P.S. Don’t forget to stay seated for the two post-credit scenes, which promise to deliver some tantalizing hints about what lies ahead in the Ghostbusters universe.