Can I tell you a secret? Something that I feel embarrassed to admit to others?
Okay, I'm glad I can trust you. Here it is: I'm excited about this just-announced Ghostbusters sequel. Phew, I'm glad I was able to get that out. A Stay Puft Marshmallow Man-sized weight has been lifted off my shoulders.
Let's backtrack a little for those not in the know. A few days ago, it was revealed that Jason Reitman is directing a "secret" (what makes it a secret? I have no clue) Ghostbusters film. It’s not a spin-off, not affiliated with the 2016 reboot and isn’t a reboot itself. It’s a bonafide sequel, likely with new characters, that takes place in the original Ghostbusters universe. Big news, right? Right.
Back to my aforementioned anticipation. Why am I so hesitant to admit that I want to see the junior Reitman's take on one of my favorite franchises? Well, because it seems that ever since the production was announced a couple days ago, all the internet has been scalding with hot takes. Most of these haven't been so polite or kind to the upcoming sequel. We have heard it all, from calls of neoptism to outcries over retconning the fun 2016 spin-off. Maybe it's because the world at large is such a dumpster fire right now but people seem downright infuriated with the new Ghostbusters film. They‘re furious, personally wronged, violated even. And me, I'm just feeling pretty jazzed.
I know there is a lot going against the movie. Jason Reitman isn't the first person who comes to mind when I think of comedy. Sadly, the original cast doesn't seem to be involved with this new take. As well, I am bummed that Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig and the rest of the gang won't get another chance to suit up with their proton packs. Finally, I'll freely admit that the acclaimed Ghostbusters series isn't really a series at all but one good film followed by a fairly lame sequel and a promising but lacking spin-off. So all of my high regard for the franchise is really for just one movie. Perhaps lightning won’t strike twice after all these years. Still, I just can't muster up the hate others have for this sequel. Am I cautious? Yes. Timid with my reaction? Yes. But ultimately excited? YES.
Ghostbusters is such a unique and tricky cinematic universe. The first film was so fantastic and so promising but the series just floundered after that. Perhaps that’s why I am still ready for a sequel, because I know the untapped potential is there. Or maybe I’m a sucker for comedy-horror films. Or maybe - and this one is most likely - I’m just nostalgic for the original movie and how much it has meant to me over the years. It’s probably a combination of all three. Whatever the reason, Mr. Reitman has at least one fan ready to buy a ticket.
We have all been burned by long-awaited sequels and prequels. But we have also been gifted with movies such as Blade Runner 2049, Mad Max: Fury Road, Star Wars: The Force Awakens and Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (I just threw that last one in there to see if you were still paying attention). The point is there’s a big chance that the new Ghostbusters will suck but there’s also a big chance it won’t and I’m going to try to hold onto that. This is my little nod to anyone else out there who isn’t dissuaded by the immediate collective “Meh” this unexpected news received. You have a right to be jazzed, even if it might be naive. Did that trailer give you a bit of goosebumps when you heard the famous Ghostbusters music? Good for you. You’re not alone.
I’ll be pessimistic about a lot of things. Most things, in fact! I’m a mellenial after all. But I’ve got to hold onto my optimism about Ghostbusters. It’s been with me since I was a child.