Why I Hate Ghostbusters II

Growing up in the late 80's and early 90's you couldn't go down any toy aisle or watch TV without seeing something about the Ghostbusters. And I will admit that I am a huge fan of the series and I was completely stoked when I heard about Ghostbusters II coming out. But why and I reviewing a movie on a site where I typically rant and bitch about how horrible it is? Because the best critics can spot the shit on the well-kept lawn, and buy is there a big fucking dog living at that house. Now, I know most of you will come back and say "it wasn't that bad of a movie, give it a break!," but I digress, no movie is safe. I love Pulp Fiction but I plan on ranting about that someday. Now I will admit that there are several things I like about this movie and they do out-number the things that make me say what the fuck, but the the "wtf" moments outweigh the good in terms of how bad those few moments are. Horrible one-liners and bad character development plague this movie more than anything.

Let me say this, there is something overall about this movie that just doesn't sit right with me. And that's the humor in this one. Anyone who's seen the original movie knows that there is a well-balanced mix of seriousness and humor, something that is sadly lacking in this movie. Even Bill Murray has publicly stated in various interviews that the reason he refused to come back and do a third one is because this movie was not as fun as the original to work on and it ruined the entire experience of the series because of that. And trust me people, it shows. There's one scene in this movie that I can point out that shows how much Murray doesn't really care. If you pay close enough attention to Murray's face during the dinner scene between Peter and Dana you can almost look at the expression on his face and see that he's basically phoning it in. Throughout the scene he has almost a completely blank look on his face and little to no emotion when he speaks. One could say this is indicative of the character of Peter, but compared to the original movie this Peter needs a fucking happy pill.

The humor problem is quite simple in this movie, there's too much of it. The jokes are frequent and about 70% of them are really not funny at all. Here's a few examples:

Dana: Okay, but after dinner, don't put any of those old cheap moves on me. It's different now.
Peter Venkman: Oh, no! I have all NEW cheap moves.


Peter Venkman: Have you been outside lately? Do you know how weird it is out there? We've taken our own head count. There seem to be six million completely miserable assholes living in the tri-state area.
Hardemeyer: Oh, please!
Peter Venkman: Excuse me, six million and one.


Ray: You mean you never even had a Slinky?
Egon: We had part of a Slinky. But I straightened it.


Ray: You think there's a connection between this Vigo character and the... slime?
Egon: Is the atomic weight of cobalt 58.9?

One liners do not a joke make. I will admit in the original most, if not all, of the one liners worked, but that was because they fit the situation perfectly. In this movie there's atleast one in every scene. It's like Slimer (from the cartoon) and food, one is never seen without the other. As you can see from the few examples I've listed above most of the one liners are extremely dry feel old, even for the time when the movie was released. I mean do we need to have the atomic weight or slinky jokes from Egon? We all know he's smart but do we really need it pointed out every time he opens his mouth?

However, as bad as the humor may be in the movie it really doesn't compare to the complete lack of character development when it came to most of the newer characters in the movie. The one character who suffered from this the most was that of the main villian Vigo. Most people will tell you that Vigo is nothing compared to the first film's villian, Stay Puft, and I have to agree. But, if they had actually spent some more time and fleshed out Vigo a little more, Stay Puft would've been a footnote to him.

Throughout the movie they hint at the type of power that Vigo wields, but mainly showcase his abilities at possession. There is one scene however that shows how fucking badass he can be when he locks Ray and Egon in the darkroom and then proceeds to set fire to the entire room almost killing our two heroes. They then follow this up with Ray, Winston and Egon walking thru the old subway tunnels to find the river of slime only to get a warning from Vigo in the form of several severed heads on spikes. To me this shows how much potential Vigo really has and the latter creeped me the fuck out as a kid. But where do they go from here with all this beautiful potential that just opened up? Fucking no where. They go right back to the whole possession thing, which by the end of the movie is getting pretty fucking old.

Now other than Vigo there are only a few other characters that were forefront throughout the movie, but lacked any real background development. First on the list is Mayor Lenny. While most of you are probably saying, he was in the first movie so why would they need to get any deeper with him? Well, he's a big part of the underlying plot at the beginning of the movie. If you remember they mention several times that they were put out of business because of several local and state goverment agencies suing them over the massive fallout of GB1. Now if memory serves me on this one, in the first movie Mayor Lenny acknowledges that the EPA is at fault for causing the massive explosion when they shut down the containment unit. So why did he sue them and not the EPA? Also why is he running for governor when his popularity is probably extremely low after the events of GB1? I mean come on, almost the entire city was wiped out! There's a huge amount of story left of there out for some reason. Another character that most people don't even think of is Jack Hardemeyer, Mayor Lenny's campaign manager. Throughout the entire movie he has a beef with out heroes, but we're never really told why. He pokes fun of them being wash outs and even goes to have them committed after a meeting with the mayor, which in my opinion shows he really fucking hates them for some reason. Seriously, what did they do that was so horrible to make this guy hate them show much? Did they trap and contain the ghost of his grandmother or pet dog? The only reason they really give us is that it's because he wants Mayor Lenny to get elected no matter what the cost. Even then they don't tell us what he's getting out of the election if the mayor does win.

Well, there you have it, some of my reasons as to why Ghostbusters II is a horrible movie compared to the original. Pathetic character development and some of the worst one-liners I've seen since A View To A Kill. No wait, that movie atleast had Christopher Walken, so there's a one up on Ghostbusters 2. Now there are a couple of things that I did leave out, but I did not forget about. Plot holes are infrequent but still do exsist. Such as why in the fuck do they change their sign to the ghost giving the peace sign, and how in the fuck did Louis manage to get around wearing a proton pack that would weigh about as much (if not more) as him? Hopefully the writers of Ghostbusters 3 take into account all the problems with this movie and give us the sequel we've been wanting since the original.

Well just don't take my word for it with all these issues, I urge you to check them out yourselves and go watch the movie. For all my hating on it, this is actually a good movie.

Until next review...