Ghostbusters II (1989)
"Sometimes, s**t happens. Someone has to deal with it. And, who are you going to call?"
Yes, boils and ghouls, our boys in gray are back to knock out some pretty pesky poltergeists. In 1989, the first Ghostbusters was already a comedy icon, "The Real Ghostbusters" cartoon was a hit with kids, and Ghostbusters toys were selling off the shelves. Just when the mayhem began to lull slightly, out comes another Ghostbusters movie and the bedlam begun again.
Ghostbusters 2 proved to have the same magical touch that Ghostbusters had, but to a lesser degree. The Ghostbusters now have to deal with an invincible Carpathian who is turning all the bad vibes of New York into a potent slime river (yes, it is as ridiculous as it sounds). The comedy is just as brilliantly written as the first, despite a plot that just doesn’t seem to hold as much water as the first movie. Ernie Hudson’s character is more developed (which is a good thing) and Sigourney Weaver is given much less screen time (also a good thing). Most of the bit players are back in their old roles. In fact, the only problem I had with the casting was that Rick Moranis, while pivotal to the story, suffered significantly decreased screen time. However, I digress.
Perhaps the most notable difference between Ghostbusters and Ghostbusters 2 is the profoundly different soundtracks. The original film had one of the best and most upbeat soundtracks ever created. The second film fell drastically short in their music choices in comparison. It was very much like listening to the soundtrack of Grease versus Grease 2. The difference is so noticeable (even to me, who is by no means a music genius), and it really affects the enjoyment of the movie. On the flip side, the second movie exceeded the first in the special effects department. Instead of the animated transformations that were popular in the days of the black and white Universal Monsters movies, we are treated to the Statue of Liberty walking down the streets of New York City. It's a give and take situation.
Though not nearly as fresh as the first film, this movie is enjoyable nonetheless. I would still recommend it to all fans of the genre as it is a slaphappy parody about demons, and ghouls, and ghosts (oh my!). As far as sequels go, this one is top notch, and a true delight for all fans of the Ghostbusters era. Bill Murray, Dan Akroyd, and Harold Ramis never fail to disappoint and this is a great movie to watch on a lazy weekend afternoon. After all, when comedy is needed, who are you going to call?