Richard and CP24 anchor Nneka Elliot talk about the weekend’s four big releases, “Ghostbusters,” the new Kristen Stewart sci fi flick “Equals,” “Captain Fantastic,” starring Viggo Mortensen and the new Canadian horror film “The Dark Stranger.”
Watch the whole thing HERE!
Consider the muse.
Alfred Hitchcock made three of his greatest films with Grace Kelly and tried to lure her back to the big screen long after she retired. Martin Scorsese and Leonardo DiCaprio have a seemingly unbreakable cinematic bond and the world of movies would be far less interesting if Werner Herzog and Klaus Kinski had never met. John Ford and John Wayne inspired one another to do their best work and Tim Burton and Johnny Depp’s shared eccentricities gave us unforgettable nights at the multiplex.
Muses inspire their directors to aspire to new heights, to push the limits of their creativity.
Add another to the list: Melissa McCarthy.
Over the course of four films — including this weekend’s Ghostbusters — she has upped director Paul Feig’s game and in turn he gave her the roles that broke her out of the TV sidekick treadmill and turned her into a big screen star. “It’s not even like we go, ‘We’ve got to do the next movie together,’” Feig says.
“It’s just that suddenly the next movie will pop up and I’m like, ‘You know who would be great for this?’ So it’s funny that people think we have an agenda to keep doing this.”
Agenda or not, their creative chemistry is undeniable.
Feig describes McCarthy’s audition for the first film they made together, Bridesmaids, as a “religious moment.” She was less sure.
“The whole ride home from the audition,” she says, “I was thinking, ‘I got too weird. Should I turn the car around and do that cheesy actor thing of I can do it better! Give me another shot!’”
The director cast her in the scene-stealing role of Megan — imagine a feral, female Guy Fieri — and it was her flashpoint.
Her wonderfully weird performance, complete with sexual hijinks and an explosive bout of diarrhea —“It’s coming out of me like lava!” — stole the show out from under other, better-known stars like Kristen Wiig — and earned her an Oscar nomination.
Next up for the dynamic duo was The Heat, an odd couple, buddy cop movie set in Boston co-starring Sandra Bullock.
McCarthy plays a tough-talking street cop who forms an unlikely alliance with the uptight Sandra Bullock to bring down a murderous drug dealer.
The role riffed on McCarthy’s signature character, the aggressive but damaged comedic persona. “I’ve played a lot of characters who are very vocal, very aggressive,” she told me in 2014.
“For the women I’ve played there is a reason why they are so ballsy and it is nice when you see the crack in the veneer and you realize, ‘It’s part of their insecurity. They stay loud so nobody yells at them.’”
Feig knows when to let McCarthy off the leash — there are some wild slapstick scenes here — but he also knows when to pull her back and let the script do the work.
This week McCarthy headlines Feig’s all-female Ghostbusters reboot alongside Bridesmaids co-star Kristen Wiig.
Will that be their final collaboration? Don’t count on it.
Feig is reportedly writing a Spy sequel as we speak.
“She’s so good,” he says, “and we just really have the same sense of humour.”
Director Paul Fieg and Company are not the Ruiners of Your Childhood. Your youthful “Ghostbusters” memories are alive and well, in your head, in your DVD drawer or digital download file folder. Ghostbros, upset their 1984 favourite is being rebooted with an all female cast, flooded the internet with low-to-no star reviews. As it turns out, the time they spent trying to torpedo a movie they had not yet seen, might have been better spent making room on their basement shelves for the new “Ghostbusters” figurines. Feig hasn’t desecrated a classic, he has added a new chapter, creating a light and fluffy concoction that moves the franchise into the future while paying homage to the past.
When we first meet Erin Gilbert (Kristen Wiig) she’s a professor at Columbia trying to hide her past as a paranormal investigator. When a ghost-hunting book she co-wrote with Abby Yates (Melissa McCarthy) comes to light she is let go. Like Peter Venkman, Ray Stantz and Egon Spengler before her, she leaves academia and becomes a professional New York City ghostbuster alongside Abby, proton pack engineer Jillian Holtzmann (Kate McKinnon) and former subway worker Patty Tolan (Leslie Jones).
After making a name for themselves they uncover a major plot hatched by hotel janitor Rowan North (Neil Casey). Upset his genius has been ignored by the world, he plans on unleashing an army of undead to come back and “pester the world” in an event he calls the Fourth Cataclysm. He has created a vortex that will allow whatever it is on that plane to come crashing down on this plane and flood New York City with ghosts. By the climax the movie dissolves into regular summertime C.G.I. tomfoolery as the Ghostbusters battle spirits in Times Square.
There is a sense of déjà vu hanging heavy over “Ghostbusters.” The new film doesn’t continue the original story, it reboots it, taking us back to the origins of the group. In other words, it’s a lot like the 1984 movie. From class four semi-anchored entities and proton streams to cameos from Slimer, Dan Aykroyd, Bill Murray, Ernie Hudson, Sigourney Weaver, Annie “Ghostbusters, whaddaya want?” Potts plus a glimpse of a Harold Ramis statue, the movie feels familiar but has been freshened up.
The cast doesn’t try to imitate Murray, Aykroyd, Ramis and Hudson. The new characters are just that, new creations plunked down into an existing world.
McCarthy and Wiig, reteamed for the first time since “Bridesmaids,” are solid and Jones is a formidable presence but most interesting is McKinnon as engineering nerd Holtzmann. She is unapologetically weird, as strange as her unruly asymmetrical haircut and a glorious addition to the “Ghostbusters” family.
Also welcome is Chris Hemsworth as the dippy receptionist who doesn’t have glass in his eyeglasses and says things like, “An aquarium is a submarine for fish.” He’s a walking non sequitur and very funny.
Like the old Abbott and Costello horror comedies, “Ghostbusters” doesn’t have any real scares but it will make you laugh. The script, co-written by Feig and “Parks and Recreation” writer Katie Dippold, is funny, if not exactly in a slap the knee kind of way, then in a slow boil constant giggle respect. Is it an out-of-this-world hit like Feig’s “Bridesmaids” or “Spy”? No. It occasionally suffers from a weird rhythm where scenes end suddenly and at least one of the cameos feels wedged in, but the overall effect is one of a respectful resurrection of a beloved franchise.
Best of all, it is self-aware. Reading on-line comments Erin comes across one that reads, “Ain’t no bitches going to hunt no ghosts.” Later Abby says, “Don’t read what crazy people write in the middle of the night online.” Are you listening Ghostbros?