There are so many movies after Return of the Jedi that I want to write about.
1. Do I stick with chronological order?
2. Do I do a rental or a cinema experience?
I went with the movie I wanted to preach about since I started this blog.
First off, I have NEVER seen this film on the big screen–I was too young and my parents wanted to supervise me when I watched it for the first time–so I went with the rental. This is not the next film chronologically in my film viewing life either. I have seen this film more than any other film (36 times…I ruined the VHS recording that we copied). I think that I could quote the film from beginning dialogue to the end of the movie. To this day when I flip through channels and see that it’s on, I stop there and watch until the next commercial break. There is yet to be a film that was so funny and so creative using multiple-genres. I feel that it is definitely a comedy, but it could have a science fiction, slight-horror tag as well.
It was directed by the great Ivan Reitman, a comedy film genius and written by none other than Ray Stantz and Egon Spengler (AKA Dan Aykroyd and the late GREAT Harold Ramis).
If you haven’t guessed the film yet by the clues in the last paragraph…slightly disappointed but I get it, it was 30 years old last year. I’ll throw out a few more hints before I drop the title. It is the film that introduced me to one of my favorite actors of all time….Bill Murray as well as my favorite actress of all time Sigourney Weaver. It had Rick Moranis who was possessed by a prehistoric dog and I was introduced to these phrases:
“Don’t cross the streams.”
“Are you the Keymaster?”
“I’m the Gatekeeper.”
“Ray…when someone asks you if you’re a god, you say YES!”
“FOUR FEET ABOVE THE COVERS! She barks! She drools! She claws!”
“Nimble little minx isn’t she?”
“I couldn’t help it….it just popped in there.”
“He slimed me.”
If that last one hasn’t given it away, I can’t help you…you’re lost.
“Who you gonna call?”
Easily my favorite comedy for all time, if you haven’t guessed that yet. I have never laughed so hard at a movie and I remember being excited for each scene to unfold. After I started viewing it over and over, I would get excited about scenes that I knew would be coming up and found myself waiting to laugh for what I had already seen before. I continue to laugh.
Most people remember the famous “slimed me” scene, but I walked away from the film laughing at the subtle things:
“What, somebody blows their nose and you want to keep it?”
and, one of my ALL TIME favorite lines captured on film,
“Listen….do you smell something?”
I could go on and on and continue to quote this entire film (there is plenty more) but that could ruin someone’s first viewing and I would not want to take that from you. The premise and the writing and acting I feel are what make this film a comedic masterpiece. Writing about ghosts is one thing, but to be so bold as to make it a comedy with a science fiction backdrop while breaking barriers with visual effects in 1983 no less (released in 1984). I would’ve loved to have been in the room when Dan and Harold pitched this script for production.
To me it is a shame that we don’t glorify comedies the same way we glorify drama. I will most likely touch on this frequently as I continue with this blog. “Ghostbusters” is 1984’s Best Picture and it wasn’t even on the ballot. You’ll find that I’m a sucker for creativity, and at that time I remember people saying that they had never seen anything like it. I don’t feel that we have since. Definitely one of a kind.
I might just have to watch it again….
I had added some more on a post that I did in January of 2015. I rarely re-post that one, but I re-post this one frequently. I thought I’d add that info here. Sorry if it jumbles up the post, but it is how I feel:
“Ghostbusters” was it for me. I know that I have already talked about this movie at length, but I want you to know that I have probably spared you a dissertation on the brilliance of every scene of this movie. The subtleties of the comedy they show helps the big laughs be even bigger. I am going to give just one example of this:
Dana, Sigourney Weaver’s character, can just walk past her nerdy neighbor Louis Tully’s (played by the brilliant comedy actor Rick Moranis) apartment and he will come out and engage with her. Dana’s subtle facial expressions show that he annoys her. His expressions show through that he has a crush on her. Later when Louis is having a party and the music is blaring from inside his apartment, Dana tries to quietly sneak past on her tip-toes, thinking that she has a chance not to have to encounter Louis–wrongo. He opens the door as she reaches the exact same point of the last encounter and she shrugs her head down in defeat. This makes their “make out scene” when they encounter each other as the possessed Keymaster and Gatekeeper twice as funny.
Brilliant writing and acting.
God I love that movie. Probably way too much but I don’t care. Its creativity deserves my unhealthy obsession with it.
You’ll find that this movie is a bridge to some other movies that I wouldn’t understand if I did not watch this one and ask my parents what some of the jokes meant.
Looking back like this is so enjoyable watching my taste change over time.
I recommend it.
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