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Movie Review: Ghostbusters (1984)

Updated on September 6, 2019
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Natalie is a writer who works at her local library. She enjoys writing reviews, watching anime and TV shows, and playing video games.

Ghostbusters combo pack blu-ray cover.
Ghostbusters combo pack blu-ray cover. | Source

Quick Info

Director: Ivan Reitman
Distributor: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
Released: September 16, 2014, in a double-feature with Ghostbusters II (1989)
Runtime: 105 minutes
Availability: on DVD, blu-ray and streaming, also available for rent digitally

Story Summary

Peter Venkman, Raymond Stantz, and Egon Spenglerare are would-be ghost hunters and after they encounter the manifestation of a ghost in the New York Public Library, they’re fired from their jobs and start a ghost extermination service, but they might just be in over their heads with the arrival of the mysterious entity called Zuul.

The Story is Fun and Interesting

I’ve watched stories about ghost hunting, such as the anime Ghost Hunt (2006), but stories about the paranormal aren’t something I’m really into. I did enjoy the story a lot because it didn’t take itself too seriously and it had fun with the premise. It does have its serious moments, but they’re balanced out by great comedy from the actors reacting to the ghosts they encounter, which aren’t too serious most of the time outside of the main plot.

I enjoyed this film because of the story and the characters. The visual effects are also very good.

Ghostbusters (1984) Trailer #1 | Movieclips Classic Trailers

The Visual Effects Still Hold Up

The visual effects still hold up for the most part. They used a lot of real costumes and props for the film, some of the ghosts look a little silly but the effects are still very well done.

It’s not the most amazing movie ever, but it is very entertaining because it’s a very unique story and that makes for very unique ghosts and special effects for the ghosts that I haven’t seen in other films about ghosts.

Peter witnesses a supernatural phenomenon.
Peter witnesses a supernatural phenomenon. | Source

The Actors are Great!

Bill Murray gave a great performance as Peter Venkman in both the serious and funny aspects of the film. He was great in this role and I enjoyed watching him onscreen since he seems to be the most serious character of the bunch.

Dan Aykroyd did a great job as Raymond Stantz, he’s also a somewhat serious and his performance was entertaining. I liked how he played off of Bill Murray and their character dynamics.

The fact that I didn’t initially recognize Sigourney Weaver as Dana Barrett is hilarious to me, because I have seen movies that she’s been in before. She did a great job at both the serious and comedic aspects of her character and I enjoyed her acting in this film.

I enjoyed the late Harold Ramis as Egon Spengler. He was one of the funniest aspects of the film and I’m going to miss him in the Ghostbusters 2020 movie but I hope they give him a nice tribute in that film because he died of an illness in 2014 at the age of 69 and he was great in this movie.

Rick Moranis is great as Louis Tully, I recognized him from both Spaceballs (1987) and Honey, I Shrunk the Kids (1989). I did enjoy his acting and he did a great job, but I wish he got to do more funny parts since he was a little more serious in this film, but he did have some funny moments.

Annie Potts gave a funny and entertaining performance as Janine Melnitz, the Ghostbusters secretary. She has to put up with all their antics and she has a great dynamic with the team and she makes the movie funny with her sarcasm.

I enjoyed Ernie Hudson acting as Winston Zeddemore. I liked that he was the new guy joining the team after they became famous. His performance was entertaining and fun.

I loved that the cast was hilarious and funny together and that they all played off each other very well and made the movie fun and entertaining. They cast everyone in great roles and I can see why people love this movie. I enjoyed it a lot.

Ghostbusters (Original Score) - 01 Opening - The Library - Elmer Bernstein

The Soundtrack is Great

Elmer Bernstein’s soundtrack is nice and fits the film very well. It complements the film and I did like the score, but what we all remember is the Ghostbusters theme song.

Ray Parker Jr’s theme song for Ghostbusters is ridiculously catchy and it’s going to be stuck in your head for a long, long time.

Overall, it’s a nice soundtrack with a ridiculously catchy theme song that made the film so memorable along with the story and the acting.

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Bustin' makes me feel good!
Bustin' makes me feel good! | Source

The Dated Visual Effects Do Look Silly

While the visual effects do hold up, they can look silly at times because you can tell that some of the things on screen are fake, and it can be very distracting. Some of the effects do look a little hokey because they look like rubber but you should be able to enjoy the film anyway unless you just don’t like old movies.

It can be hard to take the movie seriously when it does look silly due to the dated visual effects but it’s something you’ll either ignore and enjoy the story or it will pull you out of the film. But that of course, depends on the viewers and how they feel about old visual effects in older movies.

Parental Warning

There are some language and violence related to ghost hunting, but it’s more comedic than serious. Zuul does try to use Dana to seduce Peter, but it’s a little comedic because she’s so out of character.

It’s a lot of Fun and I enjoyed it!

While I’m not a diehard Ghostbusters fan and I’m not super into it, I did enjoy the film a lot. It was a fun and entertaining film because of the story and the characters.

It has a very memorable villain and the right balance of comedy and seriousness and it’s a film that just has fun with its premise and does everything right for the story it’s telling.

Quick Summary

What Works:
What Doesn't Work:
Great story, characters and world-building
Dated visual effects can look silly
Visual effects still look good
Great chemistry and comedy between al lthe characters
Great acting
Nice soundteack

Grade: A-

Ghostbusters (1984) is a lot of fun and I enjoyed the film. I can see why it garnered a following of very loyal fans. It’s entertaining and humorous and very memorable because of the story and the characters.

It’s also a unique premise that doesn’t take itself too seriously when it comes to the ghost hunting premise. Usually, that premise is the plot of a horror film, not a comedy.

I did enjoy the comedic take on ghost hunting and the film is very memorable because of its unique premise. It also enjoyed the characters and how they interacted with each other.

It’s a fun and entertaining film that I really enjoyed. I won’t be buying it for my personal collection, but I did enjoy watching it on TV a lot. I will be reviewing the sequel Ghostbusters II and Ghostbusters 2020 when it comes out on DVD.

I do think it was worth my time, but not worth my money since it’s not one of my favorites, but it is very affordable and a lot of fun to watch, I just won’t be buying it for my personal movie collection. I highly recommend the movie and it is one that you can blind buy and enjoy. It’s well worth your time and worth your money if you want to spend it.

My Rating

5 stars for Movie Review: Ghostbusters (1984)

© 2019 ReViewMeMedia


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