Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire – Movie Review

Set a couple of years after the events in Ghostbusters: Afterlife, the Spengler family have relocated to New York City and have taken over the Ghost busting business, which is being funded by former buster-turned successful businessman, Winston Zeddemore (Ernie Hudson). The family, which includes Callie (Carrie Coon), her children, Phoebe (Mckenna Grace), Trevor (Finn Wolfhard) and their stepfather-in-training, Gary (Paul Rudd) are trying to make the best of things. The old firehouse that they work and live in is filled with mold and rats (not to mention the glitchy ghost containment unit in the basement). Trevor, who is now 18 years old, is sick of being treated like a kid and Phoebe has been taken off the team due to her recklessness and, also because she is only 15 years old, which is an issue for long-time Ghostbusters enemy and public official, Walter Peck (William Atherton).

What the Spengler’s weren’t aware of is that Winston’s team have been building a brand-new ghost containment unit, located at an old New York aquarium. Since the 40-year-old unit at the firehouse is on its’ last legs, it was about time for a upgrade. The team at the paranormal research facility have also been studying ghosts that have been extracted from objects like CD players and grandfather clocks that were possessed. These items have been collected and donated by Ray Stantz (Dan Aykroyd) who runs a paranormal book shop (also funded by Winston).

When Nadeem (Kumail Nanjiani) comes to Ray’s shop and sells him a box of his grandmother’s artifacts, he is unaware that one of them is actually a prison for a very dangerous evil force that is capable of freezing the world and the people in it. Of course that prison eventually gets opened and the the force, named Garraka is released.

Much like Afterlife, Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire is an enjoyable big-budget comedy that offers something for all ages. The older folks will be happy to see Winson, Ray and Janine (Annie Potts) in a little more than a cameo this time around. However, Murray’s Peter Venkman’s isn’t on screen all that much. Like it or hate it, these films now belong to the younger cast. Phoebe is still the best of the newer characters and Grace is great in the role. It will be very interesting to see how the already intelligent and brave young woman changes as she grows older in potential future sequels. Paul Rudd continues to bring the laughs with some of his character’s more awkward moments. One of the best is when he tries to show Callie that he knows how to be a stern step-parent and hilariously fumbles it before apologizing. Logan Kim and Celeste O’Connor also return as Podcast and Lucky, friends of the Spengler kids.

While I am truly happy to see the team back in NYC, my biggest gripe with the new Ghostbusters films is that they just don’t have the same edgy humor as the first two features. The 80’s were a different time. If we do get more films in the future, I would love to see the team expand into other parts of the city/country and bring in some of today’s comedic talent into the fold. I can see Pete Davidson and Bill Burr co-starring again as Ghostbusters.

By: Marc Ferman