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Weirdly Serious ‘Ghostbusters: Afterlife’ Trailer Divides Fans: ‘I Thought Ghostbusters Was a Comedy’

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Weirdly Serious ‘Ghostbusters: Afterlife’ Trailer Divides Fans: ‘I Thought Ghostbusters Was a Comedy’

There’s something strange in the neighborhood — specifically, if you ask many fans of the 80s comedy classic “Ghostbusters,” the lack of humor in the new “Ghostbusters: Afterlife” trailer. Some are ripping the reboot’s relatively serious tone as “bizarre” while others are questioning why a film in which “that’s a big twinkie” is uttered is held in such high regard in the first place. 

“Ghostbusters: Afterlife” came back to haunt us Tuesday, dropping a new trailer featuring more insight into the movie’s plot, hints at some of its nostalgic cameos and an unexpectedly reverent attitude toward its silly, sarcastic source material. Because, as previously mentioned, the original “Ghostbusters” is generally perceived as a comedy — but the trailers for “Afterlife” have so far made this sequel seem more like a drama.

The film was directed by Jason Reitman, son of Ivan Reitman, who directed the original 1984 flick starring Bill Murray, Dan Akroyd and Harold Ramis. While the decision to keep the franchise in the family may have been Sony’s way of appeasing the fanbase, the latest sneak peek seems to be doing anything but. 

The trailer has YouTube film critics Patrick Willems and Jay Bauman wondering whether we’re talking about the same “Ghostbusters” here. But they were not alone.

Maybe I’m misremembering but I thought ghostbusters was a comedy— Patrick Willems (@patrickhwillems) July 27, 2021

The new Ghostbusters doesn’t look baaaaad or anything, but it’s so weird that their marketing angle is to play up your nostalgia for some sort of alternate, Spielbergian version of the original movie that never existed. Also Walmart Doritos Hershey Sony PS5— Jay Bauman (@JayBauman1) July 27, 2021

still so bizarre how the tone of this movie’s marketing is nostalgic for a ghostbusters movie that doesn’t exist https://t.co/dDTtQpJJ4J??? jacob (@jacobdotgov) July 26, 2021

hey jason reitman did you know that ghostbusters is a comedy where dan aykroyd gets his dick sucked by a ghost https://t.co/WW4sZssaH5??? jacob (@jacobdotgov) July 27, 2021

the thing i loved about ghostbusters is the sense of family, loss, and believing in yourself. coming to grips with the past and experiencing small town america. all of these things are in the original ghostbusters.— Sloppy Steaks Enjoyer (@VALIS____) July 27, 2021

the elegiac reverence for “ghostbusters” in the trailer is so funny soon we’ll have like a loving golden hour slow pan over a twinkie dog from uhf, the kids of the weird science guys looking at the old bras in quiet awe, slow piano version of the weekend at bernie’s theme— DCFUTURE (@topherflorence) July 27, 2021

The idea behind Ghostbusters was how it was once novel/unexpected to have smart-alecky comedians in a big-budget special effects movie.It’s become such a norm to blockbuster filmmaking, and I’m not sure “what if Ghosbusters, but with Spielbergian nostalgia” is enough.— Alan Zilberman (@alanzilberman) July 27, 2021

Finally, a deadly serious take on Ghostbusters, the franchise where everyone hates the jokes.— Alex Zalben (@azalben) July 27, 2021

I’m glad the new Ghostbusters trailer is showing that this new movie is going to have what everyone loved about the original: that it was very serious, had no jokes, and was incredibly reverent towards the idea of busting ghosts.— Dr. Exposition (@DrExposition) July 27, 2021

Now, this new look at “Ghostbusters: Afterlife” did spread its fair share of spooky cheer. It also drudged up the debate raised by the 2016 reboot as to whether the original film deserves such sacred status and therefore, why it would be impervious to creative changes. 

This looks fun. And it’s nice for this movie that an army of misogynist dipshits won’t devote their lives to annihilating it before it even hits theaters Ghostbusters 2016 was fun https://t.co/v1COdiplbX??? Jordan Crucchiola (@JorCru) July 27, 2021

The new Ghostbusters trailer is doing nostalgia the right way, IMHO: telling its own story, with its own characters, whilst acknowledging the past in a slightly self-indulgent way, and without relying on too much fan service.Very much looking forward to the final product!— Sam (@Spainkiller) July 27, 2021

One problem with the American film industry at this moment in time is that the plot of the original “Ghostbusters” is being treated like a sacred text. https://t.co/3FHHJooW2o??? Jesse Hawken (@jessehawken) July 27, 2021

I will never understand why some people treat Ghostbusters like a religion. It’s so slight, so slapped-together. That’s the source of any charm that it has.— MZS (@mattzollerseitz) July 27, 2021

I am genuinely curious as to how Ghostbusters became not only this elevated kind of untouchable nostalgic gold but how it was the reboot to this of all movies that incited such fervent bigotry and a full-on organized hate campaign. https://t.co/OHtLNNrVaq??? Kayleigh Donaldson (@Ceilidhann) July 27, 2021

Does the original film’s “slapped together charm” justify taking it in a different direction or is it grounds for maintaining said charm as is? Will Paul Rudd bring the humor everyone is missing? Will a real Bill Murray cameo actually materialize? Or did he simply record his trailer line from Wes Anderson’s basement?

Hopefully these questions and more will be answered when “Ghosbusters: Afterlife” hits theaters on Nov. 11.
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