Donald Clarke

Whingeing about cinema and real life since 2009

There is a fuss about the Ghostbusters trailer

Paul Feig, the director, and Leslie Jones, one of the stars, are already fire-fighting. What a world!

Wed, Mar 9, 2016, 20:32


If you’ll allow me a moment’s hypocrisy, the lesson for today is: don’t waste too much time pondering trailers. The chatter surrounding the new promos for Ghostbusters is already deafening and we still have four long months before the film is released.

Paul Feig’s distaff reboot of the perfectly fine 1980s comedy had already kicked up a fair degree of fuss before we’d even seen a second of footage. You know how this garbage goes these days. The news that the film would be recast with females caused the usual MRA fruitcakes to fling their rattles out of their prams and begin bellowing about FemiNazis ruining everything.  Hilariously, the much misused word “boycott” was dragged out. No, you idiots. If you fail to attend, you’re not boycotting the film, you’re just doing something else instead. Here’s a sample from the perennially nutty, Mens Rights site Return of Kings:

“In multiple areas, including gender, race and the celebration of obesity, Ghostbusters 3 is a symbol of more or less everything that is wrong with both society and the filmmaking industry seeking to protect it. For your own self-respect, we vociferously recommend you keep further away from this film than Melissa McCarthy does from diets and good exercise.”

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Keep taking the tablets. Anyway, that lot were primed and ready for action when the trailer (as we say these days) dropped. More unexpected were the reactions from those concerned at the racial balance in the picture. Whereas the three white characters — played by Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig and Kate McKinnon — all appear to be boffins, Leslie Jones, African-American star of Saturday Night Live, plays a “street smart” transit worker. Cue a contrasting series of angry fusillades.

It seems that both Jones and Feig then found themselves under flanking attacks from both left and right on social media. He commented: “And haters, attack me all you want but when you attack and insult my cast, you’ve crossed the line. Grow up and leave my cast alone.” The second international trailer (included above) teases some of the points made by the critics. To return to our opening point, remember that all this has happened in response to a mere trailer. The film isn’t even finished. And it’s a remake of Ghostbusters, for feck’s sake. I know we’re all supposed to regard the thing as a classic, but it’s really no more than a tolerable romp. Oh, I’ve said too much.