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Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire

average rating is 3 out of 5


Brian Penn


Posted on:

Apr 20, 2024

Film Reviews
Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire
Directed by:
Gil Kenan
Written by:
Gil Kenan , Jason Reitman
Paul Rudd, Carrie Coon, Dan Aykroyd, Finn Wolfhard, Mckenna Grace

The 1980s gave birth to the movie franchise as we know it today. Indiana Jones, Die Hard, Lethal Weapon and Rambo all first appeared during this tumultuous decade. In 1984 Ghostbusters also made its debut; an irresistible mix of comedy, action and visual effects, it had the annoyingly catchy theme song performed by Ray Parker jnr. After all 'if there's something strange and it don't good' who are you going to call?! A less successful sequel followed in 1989 with an all-female version appearing twenty seven years later. The brand was refreshed with the hugely entertaining revival subtitled 'Afterlife' in 2021. This latest instalment directed by Gil Kenan takes the story back to its origins.


The next generation of ghostbusters are now operating from their historic base in a New York fire station. The team consists of seismologist Gary Grooberson (Paul Rudd); his girlfriend Callie Spengler (Carrie Coon) and her children Trevor (Finn Wolfhard) and Phoebe (Mckenna Grace). The off spring of Egon Spengler have inherited his ghostbusting genes as they cause mayhem in Hell’s Kitchen. However, the wrath of Mayor Peck forces Phoebe off active duty until she becomes a legal adult. She seeks solace in a game of chess and encounters the ghostly apparition of Melody, another chess player who died in a fire. Meanwhile founding father Ray Stantz (Dan Aykroyd) begins collecting cursed objects for examination. Nadeem Razmaadi sells him a mysterious brass orb left to him by his grandmother. It soon unleashes terrifying powers and spirits from the past.


‘Frozen Empire’ is undoubtedly a spectacular visual treat that carries forward the original technology in a twenty first century makeover. This provides continuity in the type of ghosts encountered in the first film. There are some welcome cameos that remind the audience of the brand’s lineage. Fusing past with present is pulled off with aplomb and gives the narrative proper structure. However, there’s a sneaking suspicion it veers too far away from its true purpose. There are scenes reminiscent of ‘Ghost’ and sections of the plot feel like they’ve been lifted from an Indiana Jones script. Not there’s anything wrong with that but doesn’t have to borrow from other films in quite such an obvious way. Parts of the film are also quite scary and branches into the horror genre. But even so ‘busting’ will still make you feel good.

About the Film Critic
Brian Penn
Brian Penn
Theatrical Release
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