Starring Carrie Coon, Finn Wolfhard, Mckenna Grace, Paul Rudd
Oscar nominated writer/director Jason Reitman (“Juno”, “Up in the Air”) takes over for his father Ivan Reitman, with a new script that beautifully bridges the first two films with “Ghostbusters Afterlife”.
Thirty-Seven years after the original “Ghostbusters” raked up over $230 million dollars, spawned an 80’s and 90’s mass toy collection, Reitman has cracked the code for a real sequel. His script allows grownups to not only relive their childhood but pass on the franchise to their children. The first thirty minutes of “Ghostbusters Afterlife” is already better than Paul Feig’s all female “Ghostbusters” (2016), which felt more like a spoof than anything. Jason Reitman who grew on his fathers sets, featured as a minor character in “Ghostbusters II”, is the perfect director to revive the franchise in a way that honors it’s legacy.
Single mother Callie (Carrie Coon), her children 15-year old Trevor (Finn Wolfhard) and 12-year-old going on 40 Phoebe (Mckenna Grace) have been evicted from their apartment in New York City. Halfway across the country, Callie’s estranged father passed away, leaving her a dilapidated farm house in the middle of nowhere. When the family arrive, they realize there are actually cool things in Summerville, Oklahoma. Callie flirts with the local summer school teacher (Paul Rudd), Trevor finds a crush, and Phoebe has endless objects to tinker with, some appear to talk back. Phoebe discovers that her grandfather was actually a well known scientist, and even though he isn’t around to teach her his ways, what he left for her to find will be instrumental in saving the world and changing her family forever.
Jason’s independent film brain is what makes “Afterlife” work so well, and with producers like Dan Aykroyd and Ivan Rietman, he was surrounded by people interested in helping him get this right.
It wouldn’t hurt to revisit the campy original films, familiarizing yourself with the characters, the world, and some of the mythology in those scripts. Ivan Reitman and his team were just learning how to best use the technology of the day in the originals, where Jason Reitman has the latest and greatest at his disposal. While Ivan has always been a bigger budget, more commercial director, his son’s success has been with smaller, independent films. At least until lately where the junior Reitman has directed a string of box office bombs.
Jason’s independent film brain is what makes “Afterlife” work so well, and with producers like Dan Aykroyd and Ivan Rietman, he was surrounded by people interested in helping him get this right. Mckenna Grace (“Gifted”, “I Tonya”) is the real scene stealer of the film, with cameos galore, it’s a real easter egg hunt for fans of the original.
Jason Reitman takes over for his father, with a new script that beautifully bridges the first two films with “Ghostbusters Afterlife”.