Ghostbusters: Afterlife – Film Review

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I love the Ghostbusters franchise and was excited to see how Jason Reitman would fare taking over from his father Ivan – and I’m pleased to report that Ghostbusters: Afterlife does not disappoint.

The film follows Callie (Carrie Coon) and her children Trevor (Finn Wolfhard) and Phoebe (Mckenna Grace) as they are evicted from their home and forced to move to a decaying house in the middle of nowhere in Oklahoma. It once belonged to Callie’s late father – Egon Spengler (the late Harold Ramis) – who upped sticks and left his family without warning when she was young to move to the farmhouse – and she finally figures out why when supernatural beings start to appear.

Reitman does a solid job of balancing the old with the new and gives the franchise a new lease of life. It is incredibly nostalgic, with plenty of references and Easter Eggs to the 1984 original throughout, but he also manages to make it feel like its own thing. You could probably enjoy this as a standalone film but I wouldn’t recommend it – you’ll have a richer, more exciting experience if you’ve watched the 1980s movies first. That’s because Reitman takes the fan service a bit too far and borrows too much from the original towards the end.

For this reason, I enjoyed the first half far more than the second. I loved meeting these new characters, learning more about Spengler’s old house and what he was up to, watching know-it-all science whizz Phoebe figuring out her connection to the Ghostbusters and the first outings of Ecto-1, the proton packs and ghost traps and of course, our first ghost sighting! I also think the script was stronger and funnier in this half. The family – plus Paul Rudd as teacher Mr. Grooberson and Logan Kim as Phoebe’s kooky buddy Podcast – were given some fantastically witty lines that made me laugh out loud often.

However, the narrative became messier as the film approached its finale. The plot wasn’t explained very well so I found it quite confusing. It seemed like Reitman worked on the assumption that everybody knows the 1984 film super well whereas I’ve not seen it for years so take my advice and have a rewatch. There are plenty of cameos – some old faces, some new – to keep an eye out for and while it brought me pure joy to see some of them, I didn’t love them all. Some felt meaningful and with a purpose while others felt like a box-ticking exercise for the fans.

The star of the show is Grace. The child star has been amazing in earlier roles such as Gifted, I, Tonya and The Handmaid’s Tale and she just keeps getting better. This film was a change of pace for her and she seemed to have a ball with it. I loved her awkward outsider character, her unashamed cleverness, her lame jokes and her friendship with Podcast. Kim has established himself as one to watch with his first-ever movie role. His comic timing, facial expressions, line delivery and general personality are spot-on and he is given so many great lines that he simply nails. He is hilarious and I’d like to see more of him please.

We all know Rudd is funny as hell but I think this should be reiterated because he is so great here (I want to see his supermarket scene again) while I just adore watching Coon’s effortless acting style. Wolfhard is the new boy in town trying hard to fit in and Celeste O’Connor rounds out the young foursome as Lucky, who isn’t fleshed out very much.

It’s not perfect by any means but Ghostbusters: Afterlife is a fun, entertaining ride that will make fans of the franchise very happy. Make sure you still until the very end of the credits.

In cinemas Thursday 18th November

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Avengers: Endgame – Film Review

Where do I even start with this review?! My mind has been reeling since I watched Avengers: Endgame a few hours ago – there is so much to process and I honestly feel like my brain has been unable to retain everything that happened! But what I do know is that I came away from it satisfied, impressed and very emotional. It’s the end of an era, man!

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Top Films for August

Today is the first of August – which means it’s time to look forward to the releases coming to UK cinemas this month. Here are my movie recommendations for the next few weeks:

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Ant-Man and the Wasp: Film Review

I’m definitely feeling the superhero fatigue – I wasn’t excited about Ant-Man and the Wasp at all, even though I loved the original and his appearance in Captain America: Civil War. It was kinda what I expected though – a lot of fun but ultimately just good. I couldn’t stretch any better than ‘good’.

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I couldn’t access Captain America: Civil premiere cos of silly wristbands

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I previously attended both the Avengers and Avengers: Age of Ultron premieres at London’s Westfield shopping centre and I had no problem entering the fans pens even though I arrived after work between 3-4pm the day of. I had hoped this would be the same for Captain America: Civil War premiere – but I was wrong, you had to have wristbands, and this is so disappointing.

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Anthony Mackie & Paul Bettany own the Captain America: Civil War press conference

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Today I attended the London press conference for Captain America: Civil War featuring such a large panel that they couldn’t use the usual table and microphone set up and have to stagger them over two levels with lounge chairs! We have (deep breath), from left to right, above: Producer Kevin Feige, Elizabeth Olsen, Daniel Bruhl, Sebastian Stan (hidden), Anthony Mackie, Paul Rudd, Chris Evans, Jeremy Renner, Robert Downey, Jr., Anthony Russo, Paul Bettany, Joe Russo and Emily VanCamp.

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Top Films for April

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It is the start of April so surprise surprise here is my U.K. preview for April! There are quite a few decent-looking movies coming out this month but I’ve managed to whittle it down to just the five best. I still think Criminal, Eye in the Sky and Miles Ahead look pretty decent, but in terms of excitement, the ones below are where it’s at.

Check it out –

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Paul Rudd talks Ant-Man, Civil War & Evangeline Lilly fight

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Paul Rudd

The latest Marvel superhero, the Ant-Man himself Paul Rudd, came to London town to promote the release and here’s what he had to say about landing the job, wearing the suit for the first time and returning to the role for Captain America: Civil War.

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Ant-Man: Film Review

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I have to admit my expectations for Ant-Man were the lowest they have ever been for a Marvel movie. The concept was laughable, the trailers did not excite me and I just could not see how it would work. Well, colour me well and truly surprised. Much like Guardians of the Galaxy, Ant-Man was unexpectedly amazing and I encourage everyone to watch it.

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Pictures from the Ant-Man London premiere

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Tonight the stars of Marvel’s latest superhero movie Ant-Man arrived on the ant carpet – yes, you read that right – ANT CARPET, in London’s Leicester Square. Paul Rudd was obviously there plus his co-stars Michael Douglas, Michael Pena and director Peyton Reed. Evangeline Lilly was not there but she is eight months pregnant, so that’s okay.

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