From the kick ass soundtrack to the budding romance between Peter and Dana and the epic one-liners that have spanned generations. Oh and Egon, science and sex appeal.
So this evening I went to see Ghostbusters in Concert at Liverpool’s Philharmonic Hall. It’s a stunning venue and one fitting to show what I consider to be, the coolest film ever made. Closely followed by Ghostbusters II.
It’s been 35 years. Released in movie theatres (did you do the voice over guy in your head then?) back in 1984, I was just 2 years old and missed the thrill of queuing up to be the first to watch the amazing special effects and a cast of established and up and coming, exciting actors.
I think I first saw the film around 1988 and I adored it straight off. Well, once I’d gotten over crapping my pants at the ghost in the library! I instantly fell in love with Bill Murray as Dr Peter Venkman, in the same way my now 14 year old adores Egon – the late, great Harold Ramis. I love Louis and Ray’s one-liners and Winston not taking any shit, in fact, Janine not taking any shit and Peck being dick – Back off man, I’m a Scientist.
As you’ve probably gathered by now, I’m a massive fan. My friend bought me tickets to see Ghostbusters in Concert, with the soundtrack played by a live orchestra – as a birthday gift. I’ve been massively giddy about it for weeks and it’s rounded off my Christmas celebrations perfectly. I took my teen daughter because she’s word perfect on quoting the film and the aforementioned Harold Ramis love.
It was epic. Seriously, if you get chance to see it, go. With Ecto 1 bells on.
Dan Ackroyd delivered an opening speech, the brand new Jason Reitman Ghostbusters Afterlife 2020 trailer played and original director, Ivan Reitman revealed how the end of the film was rewritten following an outstanding audition from a relatively unknown Sigourney Weaver.
The performance was absolutely outstanding. Goosebump-inducing drama that you could feel in your chest as the film played behind the orchestra. The light-hearted strings and flutes as Peter and Dana meet, the stirring base and brass as the action reaches fever pitch on the Central Park apartment block roof and everything in between. The orchestra gave the film a whole new dimension, even after I’ve watched it 50 times or more.
I’m limbering up to fight you, because Ghostbusters is actually the greatest film ever made. Here’s why….
It’s about friendship. The dynamic between Ray, Winston, Egon and Peter is comedy gold. Each plays their own part and they bounce off each other perfectly. They stick together. Peter manipulates Ray – who will get a third mortgage for a house with a fireman’s pole (legend), Egon takes a load of shit off Peter too and Winston is actually really forthright – shouting at the Mayor, the lot.
The script. The one liners alone have stuck with generations who’ve enjoyed this family, action, rom com film. ‘Listen, you smell that?’ ‘Well my Uncle thought he was St Jerome’ ‘Okay, who brought the dog?’, three of my particular favourites. See more here.
Janine. Janine is a phenomenal character. Brimming with attitude, an 80’s wardrobe to die for and without a shadow of a doubt, the influence behind many a Spectacle Wearer of the Year Award winners look. I’d have like to have seen a romance blossom between her and Egon as opposed to necking on the sofa with Louis in the sequel. We got one!
Peter & Dana. From the moment Peter claps eyes on Dana and proceeds to jump over the office gate to greet her, you just know he’s going to pursue her. She fends him off, he turns up to her orchestra rehearsal, they agree a date and she goes and turns into a woman possessed, like, for real. They’re so cute together and the story progressing in the second film is the icing on the Manhattan cake.
The soundtrack. My teen and I once watched a misheard lyrics vid on Youtube and one of the absolute corkers was ‘who you gonna call…..? THOSE BASTARDS and since then it’s actually ruined that catchy Ray Parker Junior track. It’s still a belter though, and hearing it performed live by an orchestra is even better.
The “special effects”. Okay they’re crap. But by early 1980’s standard they’re all kinds of amazing. The streams, Slimer, the ghosts, the shit-scary dog thing that chases Louis through Central Park, the list goes on. They’re crap, but we love them.
Egon Spengler gets his own entry into why I adore this flick. He’s socially awkward, intelligent, quiet yet fearless(ish). When he smiles or is shown any affection (from Janine or Dana) his face lights up and frankly, some days that’s all you need in life. Team Spengler.
The Ghosbusters save New York City. In a sea of thousands of flicks set in the city that never sleeps, this one goes the extra mile and brings in a 20 storey high Stay Puft Marshmallow Man – and he’s pissed. These guys save the world and they do it in manky boiler suits while driving a former funeral hearse. Legends.
I could easily continue, for hours. A thesis if you will. It’s an incredible film, for hundreds of reasons and for me it will always be special. Go on, drop me a line with your thoughts firstname.lastname@example.org. I’ll consider any other 80’s film as a worthy challenger.