We are still just under three months away from Ghostbusters: Afterlife hitting cinemas, but thanks to the surprise CinemaCon screening the first reactions to the true third movie in the franchise are out – and it sounds like Jason Reitman has done his father Ivan proud. The screening saw a small number of critics and press members being given an early view of the continuation of the Ghostbusters franchise, which Jason Reitman said is “a massive Easter Egg hunt” for fans of the original movie. After the less than well received reboot attempt in 2016, it seems like Ghostbusters: Afterlife is ready to prove that sometimes you can’t beat something familiar.
In 1984,Ghostbusters struck a chord with cinemagoers to become one of the biggest movies of the year and the decade. A sequel five years later, brought another cinematic success, although some were not quite as enamored about the movie’s story – as a child of the 80s, I can say that I loved it every bit as much. In 2016, having attempted to court Billy Murray back to the franchise a number of times and failing, Sony went down a reboot route, although Murray and other surviving cast members appeared in cameos not related to the original movies. The movie was torn apart by many fans of the original, who felt that the movie was too flashy, and too focussed on an agenda to provide the heart of the first two movies. There were some who enjoyed the movie, and if you forgot that it was trying to be a Ghostbusters movie, then it was ok. However, the Box Office gross was only $229 million from $144 million budget, making it a failure as far as Sony were concerned.
When rumors began circulating that the Bill Murray hurdle had been cleared and Jason Reitman was on board a sequel as writer and director, with original director Ivan Reitman producing, fans began to hope that the sequel that never was could be about to be risen from the dead. Now we are on the cusp of the movie’s release, and the recent trailer brought back so many nostalgic memories that fans are now primed to see the return of Venkman, Stantz and Zeddmore, alongside a whole new generation of busters, and those who have shared their first impressions of the movie have not done anything to dampen spirits.
One review said, “Yes, Ghostbusters: Afterlife screened at CinemaCon. Yes I saw it. Yes, it’s very good. Yes, this is the true Ghostbusters sequel you’ve been waiting for. It does have a lot of callbacks but it’s a nostalgic homage for the franchise. #GhostbustersAfterlife #CinemaCon.” A second confirmed the sentiment with, “Saw #GhostbustersAfterlife at CinemaCon and it’s good. A solid continuation of the original two films. Nostalgia for the original, and a strong turn by McKenna Grace as Egon’s granddaughter. Paul Rudd gets the best lines. Fans will dig it.” Another elaborated further saying, “#GhostbustersAfterlife was really great. As someone who wasn’t a massive of #Ghostbusters I had so much fun even without understanding the references. A ton of heart with a great cast. New and old fans are going to love it. Stay through the credits! #CinemaCon” and a fourth topped it off with, “#cinemacon gave us a great treat tonight. We were treated to the new film #GhostbustersAfterlife. It’s breathtaking ! Everyone needs to see it this fall!”
So far, it is all a positive sign for the movie that fans have been waiting 30 years for and for fans of the franchise, November 11 can’t come quick enough.