[intro-text size=”25px”]Tired of the same monotonous review schemes, I volunteered for a series of alternative, high-tech experimental procedures. Monitored by the Director and crew, I am mentally displaced and implanted into a myriad of cinematic simulations, or “cims”. Fully absorbed for the duration of each run time, the sole mission is to report my findings from within the scenes. These reports are known as Total Review.[/intro-text]

– CIM #1010 – “Ghostbusters” – 116 mins. – release: July 15th, 2016 –

Every once in a while, the cimulator goes on the fritz. Déjà vu floods my mindscape, blurring the lines between past and present- and then they reboot me. Fresh but familiar, inspired but original, I begin again, much like Paul Feig’s new Ghostbusters. As they lower me into the isolation unit, my mind is conflicted. On one hand, I’ve been anticipating a new Ghostbusters adventure for the majority of my life, but a total reboot..?! I want my old friends back. On the other hand, internet trolls have been bitching for months about how horrible it must be. Since I’m not fond of trolls, I’ll judge for myself.

The cim starts and I’m on a tour of an old creepy mansion turned tourist attraction. Unlike previous cimulations, this one is fueled with expectations. I ready for supernatural entities around every corner. This would be an extremely frightening situation if it weren’t for our tour guide, who details the history of the landmark in silly, unbelievable fashion. It’s at this point that I realize this world is teeming with comedy and not to be taken too seriously. However, after some mysterious paranormal activity spooks the bejeezus out of the guide, I learn that ghosts are a real threat, and something has to be done.

Shortly after my first brush with death, I encounter Erin Gilbert, a slightly goofy but highly intelligent doctor and professor with a history in metaphysics. She once co-wrote a book about the paranormal with Dr. Abby Yates, her estranged former partner. I sit in Gilbert’s lecture hall as she prepares class, when a man approaches her about their book asking for her help with the haunting. It seems that Yates has re-released the book online, and the content may get in the way of Gilbert’s promised tenure. Together we travel to Yates’ office to get her to pull the book off the web. And shit starts getting wild.

At Yate’s lab, I’m introduced to Jillian Holtzman, an insanely quirky engineer who is fully on-board Yates’ ghost train. Evil spirits are real, these women are here to prove it, and I’m ready to believe. We head to the mansion and get slimed by a floating female phantom. Then it’s game on. You see this is a world with no previous proof of ghosts, where people don’t fear what’s unseen beneath the surface. The events of New York ’84 and ’89 didn’t occur here. My memories fade into the past as I discover that in this world, when there’s something strange in the neighborhood, they’ve got no one to call yet.

With the assistance of my fourth compadre, transit worker Patty Tolan, who witnessed her own apparition in the subway, we form a team to send these specters back where they came from. Despite all the preconceived notions, being a female Ghostbuster is downright awesome. I love it. For one thing, there is never a dull moment. When you’re with these chicks, the jokes fly fast and frequent, and while sometimes that takes away from the potential scare-factor of these colorful, freakishly animated ghosts wreaking havoc, it’s a constantly enjoyable, smile-inducing experience the whole time.

Our bodacious crew of Ghostbusters are the only ones with the knowledge to save the day from Rowan, a lonely weasel of a man with a wicked doomsday plan. As we wage war in New York against an army of ghosts with an arsenal of badass proton weapons, we encounter a series of outlandish characters. Our secretary Kevin is a loveable idiot, Mayor Bradley is an over-the-top bureaucrat, and a slew of seemingly familiar faces pop up along the way, reminding me that the old days are gone but not forgotten. History is repeating itself in the most fun way possible, and bustin’ still makes me feel good.

After the cim was over, my first thought was “Fuck the haters”. These kickass lady leads knock it out of the park and had me cracking up all the way to the end. The new Ghostbusters is a rowdy good time and a top notch reboot that respects and reveres the original just as much as the die-hard fans. Aside from a slew of references, in-jokes, and cameos, there’s enough new material for Ghostbusters 2016 to hold up on it’s own as a modern comedy epic. If you’re still on the fence, afraid that your beloved ’84 classic is tarnished, check it out for yourself, but in my opinion, the flowers are still standing.

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