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VIDEO: Ghostbusters II (1989)

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The Renegado ain’t afraid of no underrated movies! In this special series of short reviews, he covers movies that he doesn’t have a lot to say about, but he can tell you why he likes them (or dislikes them). First up, he explains why Ghostbusters II is underrated!

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  • HELL YEAH GHOSTBUSTERS II IS AWESOME!  Preach it, brothah!

  • edharris1178

    I enjoyed this one too, it’s not as good as the first but it’s still a hell of a lot of fun.

    • Agreed, it may not be perfect but it’s not terrible by any means, well, at least to me.

  • robert roy

    really renegado ghostbusters 2 is good and i loved

  • Muthsarah

    Awww…this movie deserves a good, fair long-form review somewhere.  I don’t think I’ve yet seen it gets its due.

    Sure, it’s not as good as the first one.  I don’t think there’s a single person on the Internet who would claim such a thing.

    Good, nobody’s gonna contest that.  As well they shouldn’t.

    If this wasn’t a sequel, it would be a popular movie today.  If this was the first Ghostbusters movie, people would speak fondly of it.  If it wasn’t following one of the Top 10 best (and most iconic) movies of the 1980s, it would be widely considered a good movie.  But it is, it isn’t, and it is.  There’s nothing wrong with being a 7/10 movie.  It’s quite an accomplishment, really.  But how many franchises can follow up on a 10/10 like the first Ghostbusters with a sequel every bit as good if not better?  Star Wars, Star Trek (not that STtMP was a 10/10 by any means), Alien MAYBE, Terminator debateably, Dark Knight probably….uhhh…LotR MAYBE.  Uhh….I’m blanking on any others right now.  For a blockbuster sequel, this isn’t the best follow-up, but it’s still in the upper rung easy.

    It’s so worth checking out.  Peter MacNicol is magnificent as the standout comic dork, and steals the movie much as Rick Moranis stole the previous one, the mood slime makes for a fun MacGuffinesque plot device, the Statue of Liberty sequence is so much fun, the sewer scenes are creepy (especially the train), and the Titanic…oh my…TERRIFYING.  Plus, Bill Murray.  Bill Murray!

    Long story short (too late), this IS indeed a good movie. Just…don’t compare it act-for-act with the first one. It’s not great.  But it’s good.  It’s FUN.  It’s worth it.  Just…don’t watch the first one immediately beforehand.

    • You hit the nail in the right place! The movie is FUN. And in the end, that’s what’s important towards it, yes it’s not the best, and the comparison was necessary so I could recognize it’s not better than the first movie (it isn’t). Personally I like them both just as much. Each have their charm, first one being the whole thing…the sequel, well a lot of things actually, most of them mentioned in the video.

      Peter MacNicol is hilarious and by far one of my favorite comical vilians of all time, so yeah I agree with that. The slime…eh? I thought it was a creative choice to base the entire movie around it. It’s cool to see that the big problem (the slime) ultimately became the solution to itself. 

      And I dunno, there are more things to say about the movie yes, but I felt if I made this longer I would’ve gone in circles over the same stuff.

      But it IS a good sequel, I hate it when people say it’s bad or mediocre. 

      • The_Stig

        I, Vigo, the scourge of Carpathia, the sorrow of Moldavia command you!
        On a mountain of skulls in the castle of pain I sat on a throne of blood
        What was will be, what is will be no more
        Now is the season of evil.

        By far the most metal thing that has ever been said in any movie ever. Is he Vigo or Nathan Explosion?

        Oscar is not a plot hole, by the way. It’s clearly stated in the film that Oscar’s 8 months old. Ghostbusters 2 takes place five years after the first, so it’s physically impossible for Lewis/Vinz Klortho to be Oscar’s dad. It’s explicitly stated that Oscar’s father is a musician in Dana’s orchestra who ditched her and the baby for a job with an orchestra in London.

        • Sofie Liv

          I do think the big shame of the movie is that it smells a little of wasted potential.

          it has a massive oppertunity, the first movie was a nice little movie establishing a kind of cool new univers with new ideas which we only saw a fraction off, making a very solid foundation that actually could fit well for a franchise, setting up our heroes, making them rise and be on a roll.

          A sequel could easily just explore further on that, have the now all-ready risen heroes explore this univers even further, build upon it, make them move forward as characters!

          But instead, this movie tries to re-set the characters from the get-go, puts them back in the buttom (even though they had all-ready risen.) and tries to have the exact same story arch going again, instead of building further on the story.
          And that, is a big shame, because this had genuine franchise potential, a sequel to such a solid first movie placing such a firm ground base, could easily have become very big and epic, our familiar characters in new situations, having to face off to new dillemas.. and they blew it, it’s the exact same dillemas all over again.

          Which is a mistake studios actually quite often makes when it comes to suddenly injected re-makes, for some reason they think it’s the formular and not the characters that the audience fell in love with.. so thus they try to replicate the formular from the first movie.. but when a character has all-ready gone through one soul journey ones, it just does not work having him go through the exact same thing all over again. We want to see these characters and this univers move even further, not just repeat old routines.

          That being said though.. Yes, yes ghostbusters two is a funny movie in its own right. The characters are still likeable, the ghosts and the concept are still cool, it can still hit the spot ones in a while, some ideas are pretty clever even scary.. it still just feels as kind of wasted potential, which is what hurts.

          • The_Stig

            Ghostbusters II’s problem is that it opened right smack in the middle of Indiana Jones and Batman.

          • Muthsarah

            I agree with all of this.  Ghostbusters 2 really, really didn’t need to go through the exact same “prove themselves to the public” arc as the first movie, and when I first saw it, I was confused about what had happened (I saw the second one right after I saw the first…).  Yeah, it’s very repetitive.  I remember hating Shrek 2 for committing these exact same sin of erasing the main characters’ personal developments in the first movie and throwing them back into the same “doubt yourself and just be what others want you to be” kind of plot.

            Still…I recall reading how difficult it was for Ackroyd to get the first movie to the screen, and five years was a long time to wait for a sequel even back then.  And given how much stuff Ackroyd and company had to do to even get the video game made (which I hear is the closest thing we’re ever going to get of Ghostbusters 3), maybe the studio itself didn’t want to bankroll his original ideas for a sequel.  He does LOVE the occult.  Maybe his initial scripts were so “out there” and unfilmable that, no matter how well the first movie did, nobody wanted to touch it unless they felt they could easily film it, and so they ended up making basically the same movie twice.  In the end, it all comes down to the money.

            Really, the Real Ghostbusters cartoon series does a better job as a “proper” sequel (and it came first).  None of that character-building stuff, it just jumped right into the story, the Ghostbusters are a real thing, let’s go crazy with the ghosts and parallel dimensions and everything else.  But it’s solidly kids’ stuff.

          • Sofie Liv

            yeah… it’s a shame they just didn’t go crazy with the concept of. “Okay we all-ready have this awesome univers and set-up, what can we do with it?”

            I don’t know what happened with Dan Akroy and his scripting, if the studio forced him to change due to controversey or some-thing like that.. hell maybe his first script was to satanic and none-suited for children according to studios.. who knows. Or maybe it’s the man himself whom made a blunder without any studio interferance, I genuinly don’t know.

            How-ever. No more ghostbusters?… don’t be so sure. Have you seen the movie landscape these days? It’s sequels and re-makes, sequels and re-makes! All things popular from that time has now reached the re-make phase.

            If it’ll be a genuine re-make in a few years or a continuation I don’t know.. and if it is continueation, it’ll most likely be that. “Genneration X-ghostbusters.” which there has been so much talk about, and i could absolutely see Hollywood go ahead and do, and marked at the teen marked.
            Where a group of young people, picks up the mantle of the ghostbusters, and starts up their own little club while having one of the original ghostbusters appears as a tutor.

            Does this sounds like a bad movie.. no.. a concept like that could actually. Be pretty good..
            But this is hollywood, and even hollywood dealing with teens or young adults as main characters.. and they have a way of screwing that up so badly. Mark my words! this will happen, it may not be announced this year.. maybe not the next, but suddenly out of no-where, within the next few years.. it will happen.

          • Muthsarah

            “How-ever. No more ghostbusters?… don’t be so sure. Have you seen the
            movie landscape these days? It’s sequels and re-makes, sequels and
            re-makes! All things popular from that time has now reached the re-make
            phase.”

            Bill Murray refuses to have anything to do with the franchise anymore.  No Bill, no movie.  He was always the star.  Even before he was cast, Ackroyd had John Belushi in mind for Peter Venkman, and HE would have been the star instead.  Venkman, and the franchise, now lives and dies with Murray.  And Bill’s still big enough that he doesn’t HAVE to do this stuff to be relevant.  He can just make one movie a year, every other one being a Wes Anderson film, and he’s good.  He’s living off of royalties, being an icon to a new generation of hipsters, going to parties, getting drunk and stealing golf carts in Stockholm.  Living the good life.  He doesn’t need the franchise anywhere near as much as it needs him.  And he’s made it clear that he’s done with it.  Ergo, the franchise is done too.

            And the idea of replacing the old Ghostbusters with new, younger, hip, edgy counterparts goes back almost twenty years.  They’ve tried it, over and over again, and most of the time, it never gets off the ground.  When it does (and only as an animated series), it quickly flops and is forgotten.  I feel confident in declaring that this is one franchise that won’t get the revisionist treatment.  Murray’s made his feelings clear, and Ackroyd and Ramis will soon be too old to care.  Pop culture will move on.  Even the Age of Remakes won’t last forever.

            P.S. You realize Generation X is already pushing 40?  Nobody markets to them anymore.  They only BARELY market to my generation.  In a couple of years, they won’t even market to you, Sofie.  Look to the current crop of twelve-year-olds.  They’re what Hollywood cares about.

          • Sofie Liv

            Evil dead the re-make is coming out this year!

            Men in Black 3 came out last year!

            Star Trek 2 is coming out this year.

            Star wars will come out.. again.. in a year or two..

            Are they going to pass ghostbusters off? hell no, it will happen.  All of a sudden the entire enternet community will be stunned like the day George Lucas out of no-where sold his proberty to Disney!

            Or maybe if we are lucky it’ll happen like Ninja Turtle.. Michael Bay were slated to produce a new movie, the movie was shit-canned before it even started production, but all-ready an animated show to promote the movie were in the works and the show kicks ass, has been well recieved by fans and has all-ready been announced for a second season ^^

            Could happen with ghostbusters, new movie is slated, they start new animated show, movie gets shit-canned, animated show kicks ass. I would like that.. btw, also happened for Green Lantern. Failure of a movie, awesome animated show that only happened to promote said movie.. when Bruce Timm produces you know it’s going to be pretty good, they should just move him to the life action department <_<

            And yeah. "Ghostbusters genneration X." the cartoon show has been forgotten a loooong time ago.

            But the idea in concept certainly hasn't, it still floats around, and it's a perfect way to make a ghostbusters movie without needing any-body from the original ghostbusters cast if they aren't available.
            Just have a scene where the kids finds box's filled with probs from the old ghost-buster movie, a journal describing how to capture ghosts and reference the old movies a bit and BOOM! there ya go, ghostbusters totally in continuity.
            Plus, they can marked it at the kids and teen marked along with the older crowd, which is some-thing Hollywood really wants to.

            People whom grew up with ghostbusters are now old enough to be movie makers on their own, they know it's a sure money hit.. so yeah, it will happen.

          • Muthsarah

            While I will admit that the franchise has all the potential for a safe remake – known brand with known logo, original theme/concept, all original actors still alive for now-long-tired “passing the torch” cameos – I’m still deeply skeptical that it will happen in even the next ten years.  Ackroyd, Reitman, whatever studio that owns the rights to the franchise have already been trying desperately for years to get it to happen.  And they’ve failed completely (aside from the video game).  It has all the ingredients of an easy, and highly profitable, remake, and it has for over twenty years, but it just hasn’t happened, both because of Murray’s intransigence, Ackroyd’s apparently-outlandish scripts, and who knows what else.  It’s held out longer than any other recognizable franchise.  Not Star Wars, not Indy, not Star Trek, not Evil Dead, not the Turtles, not Terminator, not Predator, not Freddy, Jason or any other slasher franchise, not Alien, not Men in Black, not Robocop, not any Marvel or DC character.  If any known commodity withstands this age of lazy remakes, Ghostbusters will do it.  And it’s done a good job thus far.

            If Ghostbusters is remade, there simply won’t be anything left.  Anywhere.  It will be THE LAST franchise rebooted.  If it goes, the Age of Remakes ends, because there will be nothing left to remake except other remakes.  Like Ouroboros, Hollywood will swallow itself.

            Ghostbusters not only CAN withstand this, it MUST.

          • The_Stig

            I frankly hope it doesn’t happen. Even if Bill Murray wasn’t the biggest pain in the ass in the world to work with (he and Chevy Chase hated each other), the original cast are either too old, too fat or both and only Ernie Hudson has aged anywhere that can be considered gracefully (unless you count Sigourney Weaver, who’s Permahot). Seeing them squeeze into jumpsuits again would just be well….sad. Ghostbusters is my favorite movie ever and I will seriously become an atheist if ANY new Ghostbusters film comes out, because that will be all the proof I will ever need that there is in fact no God.

            I actually think the torch-passing film premise could have worked in the late 90’s with Ben Stiller, Jack Black and Dave Chappelle as the new Ghostbusters. Now? Not so much. That window has closed forever and I can’t think of any talented young comedians today that are worthy of putting on the proton pack. Bill Hader’s really the only name that comes to mind.

            Ackroyd should, in my opinion just let it go.

            Fun fact #1: Dan Ackroyd based much of Ghostbusters on the writings of his dad Peter, who is a paranormal investigator.

            Fun Fact #2: While John Belushi was originally slated to play Peter Venkman but died before the script could be finished (in fact, Ackroyd got the bad news while he was writing a line for John), Belushi does in fact appear in the film literally in spirit. Ackroyd created the gluttonous poltergeist that would come to be known as Slimer as a tribute to his late best friend.

          • Sofie Liv

            Never said I was a fan of the idea, it can be good.. but knowing recent Hollywood it most probably wouldn’t, and the sort of people I could see them cast just hangs me out of the throat. Yeah, a fresh group of talented young comedians as main cast because of their unique presence on screen and genuine comedic talent. That would be swell! but it wont happen, and that sucks.

            The movie how-ever.. will.. at some point happen.
            My biggest guess as to why it hasn’t happened yet would actually be Bill Murray, that as long as there is a faint hope out there that he’ll return.. they’ll hold on. (he has been rather unclear about it, swapping in between yes or no.)  But some-day, some-one whom was a fan of the old franchise and is now in buisness, will do this. And it have genuine potential to be a good movie, as this concept lends itself well to franchises.. but I wouldn’t hold out my breaht for it to be any good.. i just know it will happen at some point.

            From this day off, I give it five years tops! if a new ghostbusters movie hasn’t been slated before 2018 you can… erh.. have cookies on me.

          • John Wilson

            It seems to me the sequel focus on the supporting characters (Ray,Egon) then the big star(Peter).  It was different from what people expected,but it was good:). 

    • Just to clear things up, the first half of the video is about the “bad” stuff of the film while the second half is about the good. I should probably add a picture or text to differenciate them next time…

  • Vaughan MacDonald

    As a kid I would watch the Ghostbusters movies religiously. Once I sat down and put one on wild horses couldn’t get me away from the tv until it was over. For a time I could even quote ever line of dialogue line for line from both movies, I had completely memorised them (Not so much now in my old[er] age). And I’ve always loved both, even the second one. Maybe it’s just my own childhood nostalgia blinding me but nothing in either movie bothers me, although I still love the first one more than the second both movies are near and dear to my heart and nothing anyone says or does will ever change that 🙂

  • Thomas Stockel

    I have to totally, unequivocally disagree.  Ghostbusters II was shit and for all intents and purposes it is the first film.  You pointed that out yourself, FR.  And the sad thing is, it didn’t have to be.  Sequels in a series can be different: look at Star Treks I-IV.  Sure, IV had the whale probe, which sort of ripped off V’Ger.  But the plot elements were completely different, making it a fish out of water story rather than a reunion story.

    We were supposed to believe everyone forgot Stay Pufft?  The walls of the 5th precinct bleeding?  The earthquake?  Bullshit.

    And the mayor’s aide was not nearly as fun a villain as that dickless wonder, Peck.  Nor was Vigo a very interesting villain.

    This was a lazy movie from start to finish and it felt like a soulless cash grab.  Is there any wonder why Billy Murray doesn’t want to do Ghostbusters III?  I would say it is due to a sense of shame over being involved in II.

    • John Wilson

      Well. The city could have blame what happen on the Ghost busters. Since it was their machine that exploded. Causing them to lie low.
       

    • There’s a scene in which Wingston makes it clear the city doesn’t exactly like the ghostbusters anymore, they got sued and blamed for everything that happened, because in the real world, you know, a lot of people are not going to believe that anyway, specially when it’s been 5 years without it happening.
      I *do* agree the mayor’s aide is a weak vilian, but Vigo is kinda cool, I dunno, it’s a painting damn it xD

      • Thomas Stockel

         Yeah, I know, but that just seemed weak to me.  I know sometimes people can turn on heroes in a second (the Spider Man comics have used that formula for decades) but Christ, you had all that physical evidence everywhere!  It just seemed weak to me, just a means to reset everything so the Busters could be the plucky underdog heroes again.

        • Muthsarah

          “I know sometimes people can turn on heroes in a second (the Spider Man
          comics have used that formula for decades) but Christ, you had all that
          physical evidence everywhere!”

          Being ungrateful, and treating selfless heroes like crap, is every New Yorker’s god-given right!

          Besides, it gave the city its own arc.  A schmaltzy arc, but an arc.

    • TheCrazyFish

      Technically Bill Murray DID do Ghostbusters III. It was called Ghostbusters: The Video Game and it was awesome.

  • Cinema_Slob

    As a ghostbuster myself, I have to say that I love Ghostbusters II just as much as I love the original. The character of Janosz has a ton of quotable lines (“Vhy am I drippings vith goo?” is a classic example) and it’s just great to see the Ghostbusters back in action.

    Good on you Jerry for showcasing this underrated film!

  • Jay_Bay

    So….the cartoon version (you know what one) is the best one of them all?

    • Yup, followed by the other cartoon version (Extreme Ghostbusters)

  • The_Stig

    Winston’s disappearance from the courtroom scene reeks of the cutting room floor, but he couldn’t have done any good anyway because there were only three proton packs. Fan theories are that Winston helped evacuate people to safety while Peter, Ray and Egon took care of the Scoleri Brothers.