I said, what I said. Ghostbusters: Afterlife is the best movie of the franchise. Hands down, forever I don’t make the rules. I just follow them, especially when a movie is delivered like this. And let’s make one thing clear before OG fans get all up in this review with, “YOU LIAR!” and “YOU’RE NOT A REAL FAN!” Excuse you. I am and went to the NYCC panel to watch this bad boy. I was surrounded by my people.
The point being, the reason why Ghostbusters: Afterlife worked so well and why it’s my favorite in the entire franchise is because of the movies that came before it. And no, I’m not talking about the Melissa McCarthy one. That one was tragic and had the kind of humor that really never hit well with me. I’m talking about 1984 original and its 1989 sequel. Ghostbusters: Afterlife didn’t forget these movies. They embraced them.
This embracing of the movies that came before them made it so Afterlife felt familiar. Seriously, it was like saying hello to an old friend that you haven’t seen in a while but that you remember dearly. From the monsters to the cast, everything was there in Afterlife and I can’t help but want to watch it again, right at this moment, because of how heartfelt, fun, and nostalgic this movie made me feel.
This created the perfect landing spot for a new set of heroes to take on the reins of the Ghostbusters, namely McKenna Grace. She plays the lead Phoebe. Yes, Finn Wolfhard and Paul Rudd are in this, but it’s Grace that shines from start to finish. And she did such a good job that if I watched this movie as a kid, it would be game-changing. Don’t get me wrong, the OG Ghostbusters crew made me interested in ghosts but never made me want to hunt them. Grace made me want to do that and more.
Grace’s Phoebe left me wanting to be unapologetically myself. Phoebe didn’t change because she stood out. She lived her life, set her own pace, and found people that accepted her for her. And don’t even get me started on her mother Callie (Carrie Coon) and brother Trevor (Wolfhard). They didn’t care that she was studious, collected, and didn’t have all the friends. Sure, they wanted her to put herself out there to have the best life but they loved her nonetheless and didn’t make her feel like an outsider.
Combine the respect that Ghostbusters had for the original content with the amazing lead, and supporting cast, and you’ve got a recipe for making anything possible, namely making me cry. Yes, I cried during Ghostbusters: Afterlife. I won’t spoil it for you because you should experience it for yourself. But yes, I did cry and you will too when all the chips fall into place and you realize where this journey has taken you and the reason why.
Ghostbusters: Afterlife is available in theaters now.