Spirits of the Past: Unpacking ‘Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire’

by A.A.

*spoilers alert

“Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire” emerges as a cinematic jewel, steeped in the nostalgia of the 1980s while boldly redefining its legacy. The film artfully melds horror, comedy, and mystery, paying tribute to the original’s essence and pioneering new ground.

Central to “Frozen Empire” is Phoebe, a teenager who embodies the modern era’s rebellious spirit and complex heroism. The film introduces a nuanced girls’ love story, adding a fresh perspective and depth to the narrative. Phoebe’s journey, marked by her struggle with the forces of good and evil and self-discovery, is punctuated by her memorable opening line, “Excuse me, but I have a ghost to bust!”

The film’s craftsmanship captures the 1980s ambiance, significantly enhanced by the blend of original ghostbusters Dan Aykroyd, Bill Murray, Ernie Hudson, and Annie Potts with new chasers Paul Rudd, Carrie Coon, Finn Wolfhard, McKenna Grace, and Celeste O’Connor. Kumail Nanjiani, as the firemaker, enriches the film’s narrative depth and funny sequences. This intergenerational ensemble enhances the movie’s appeal, resonating with long-standing fans and newcomers.

In “Frozen Empire,” supernatural encounters are framed more by science than by mysticism or spiritualism, unveiling a history of ghost trapping that is far older than previously thought. The narrative intensifies with the impending release of Gatara, a malevolent spirit capable of plunging New York into an icy apocalypse, mirroring a global catastrophe.

Ending with the iconic Ghostbusters theme song, “Frozen Empire” honours its film lineage while marking a new era in the series. The movie is a tribute to the late Ivan Reitman’s original vision while under his son Jason Reitman’s production, securing the franchise’s lasting charm. It blends traditional motifs with innovative storytelling to forge a captivating and immersive film experience.