Ghostbusters 2016: A provocation


The new Ghostbusters premiered this July and received a very negative welcome. After many years of waiting for a third Ghostbusters, the fandom gets it, but it’s not a sequel as expected, instead they decided to make a reboot of the movie. The cast is a brand new one, there are cameo appearances of the original actors here and there, but this Ghostbusters tells the story of different people.

The plot is pretty much the same, from hunting ghosts to saving the world, it’s still comical, it’s still an adventure, it’s still about ghostbusters, so why did it get so much hate? The new ghostbusters are all women, the movie has a female lead and that’s the real difference from the original.

Personally I didn’t really like the movie. I’m a fan of the original one, but I’ve never been obsessed with it, I haven’t watched Ghostbusters II because I think Ghostbusters is one of those movies that shouldn’t have sequels, it’s good and funny on its own, but making a sequel is overdoing – I think pretty much the same of Star Wars, I like the original trilogy, but not the prequel and surely not the sequel they have started this year. Same goes for Ghostbusters: it was a nice, funny movie, I always like to rewatch it, but I was never interested in watching the sequel. I also wasn’t going to watch this new reboot, but the really bad criticism got me curious. My friends and acquaintances were devided, the “feminists” were excited and talked about it as the best movie of the year, the more close-minded boys were even angry about it, the smarter ones were indifferent and just commented that it wasn’t bad, but we didn’t need it.

After watching it I stand with the guys in the middle: it’s not that bad, but we could do without. It fails to equal the original – but that’s not odd considering few reboots manage to best the originals (the only remake I really enjoyed is that of Nightmare, for the mere reason that it’s terrible and completely fails to be scary, which is awesome for me because I get to watch the movie without worrying about how I’ll sleep at night). I didn’t enjoy the acting too much, but I really appreciated it as a crack movie. I like the role reversed for which the girls got the “stereotyped role for males”and viceversa. The women get to be the cool guys and the dude is the cute face only there to be looked at. It’s good to show this role reversal, for the sake of people seeing how stupid gender roles are. There probably are too many fart jokes, but it’s not like the original movie was smarter on the comical side, so overall it can be funny.

I call it an average movie I could have done without watching. But after seeing the angry mob of brainless sexist boys (and men) claiming that female ghostbusters ruin their childhood, I’m inclined to reconsider my idea: maybe we did need this movie. Even if just as a provocation.

Originally, I thought I’d watch the movie, write a mostly negative review and be done with it. Now, though, I want to address the reaction of the web. When people start insulting a movie because it has a female lead where there originally was a male lead, it’s not about the movie anymore.

If before I thought they should have avoided making this reboot, now I believe it was the right choice. It might not be successful as a film, but it certainly is as a provocation.

Though I still think that in order to fill the lack of representation on screen we should make new movies, not retell known ones. We shouldn’t suddenly change the colour of Hermione’s skin, we should write a new dark-skinned character as powerful as Hermione. But that’s harder and lately TV fails to be original.

This new Ghostbusters is a needed provocation, if not a funny film.

Maleficent: the lost wings of Disney

It has been some years now since Disney has started producing new movies retelling the stories from their animated film. I have been mostly disappointed with those, but Maleficent stands proud among the others.

The idea of showing Maleficent as a hero rather than a villain is a nice one, it is nice to see the story from a completely different prospective. And Angelina Jolie’s performance was simply stunning.

Maleficent is a good fairy at the beginning, she foolishly trusts the boy she fell for and is betrayed by him. At first her crime is only defending her home, but after the horrible betrayal she seeks revenge and her magic turns dark.

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Blue is the warmest colour: worst lesbian movie?

Unfortunately I went to see Blue is the warmest colour to the cinema. All my friends were enthusiastic of it and my best friend at that time told me it was her favourite movie of the year. If she liked it so much, I told myself, I must go and see it on the big screen.

 I wish I hadn’t. I was disgusted and honestly a bit insulted by this movie everyone declared the icon of lesbian love. I saw very little love and a lot of unrealistic sex. They acclaimed the actresses for their performance but I’ve seen better acting watching the Italian actress Monica Bellucci in The Sorcerer’s Apprentice.

 Blue is the warmest colour is based on a graphic novel of the same name, which people say is much better than the film adaptation. I haven’t read it, so I couldn’t tell, but I guess it’s difficult to do worse than the movie.

The story is about a young girl who finds out she’s attracted to girls and begins to discover her sexuality. She falls in love with an artist and drama happens. A lot of drama. So much useless drama that it’s unrealistic even for a lesbian movie (lesbian movies are known to be always full of drama).

The sex scene was the most criticised part, and although I hated it, I don’t want to be misunderstood. I’m glad that the director tried to do something new and challenging by letting it be explicit and without any censorship. But he didn’t manage to do a good job. It’s not a love scene, it’s porn. I agree that we should show love more freely, I agree that we shouldn’t care about scandalizing people, but porn is not love-making.

My impression of it was that of a movie directed by a man for men. The sex scene is obscene and likely similar to what a man’s fantasy about lesbians could be.

Viola di Mare: Italian LGBT movie

 

 Surprise surprise! We have an original Italian lesbian movie! Viola di mare (Purple sea) is a love story between two women in sexist times, in a land (Sicily) where is hard to be different.

 Sara and Angela are childhood friends, but it’s when Sara comes back after years away that they actually fall in love. That is when the sparkle finally gives birth to a fire and they cannot run from those feelings.

 But people don’t forgive being weird, women have to marry men and carry children, that is their worth, that is their only purpose. And so one of them has to change, one of them has to look like a man, so that they can be together.

 Angela dies, a delicate boy taking her place in Sara’s arms.

 Viola di mare is a story of no easy love, it’s a story of happiness and pain, grief and hiding. It’s the story of a lesbian couple from the south in the 19th Century.

 It’s not among my favourite LGBT movies, but it’s a nice one. There aren’t many Italian LGBT movies and this is among the good ones. 

The Danish Girl: A ballet of freedom

 The Danish Girl brings on screen the real story of one of the first women to undergo the gender reassignment surgery.

Lili is a beautiful woman trapped in a male body, her strenght shows as the one of a butterfly breaking the cocoon to bring colours in the world. Her strenght is elegant and shy at times, but fierce and certain.

The main actor gifts us with a breathtaking performance, he dances in Lili’s clothes offering a very good representation of transgender people.

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Mother, may I sleep with danger? – 2016 movie

Some people may recognise the title from the 1996 movie, the one I’m talking about is the 2016 remake, of course.

The original story is about a girl, Laurel, falling in love with a vampire and her mother trying to protect her from the creature. At the beginning of the movie a scene shows a teen girl being killed by her boyfriend, who she was trying to break up with, the boy is the vampire Laurel falls for. It is not a love story, but more of a thriller. The relationship soon becomes abusive and Laurel and her mother almost get killed by the vampire.

The remake is definitely different. James Franco brings on-screen a movie that takes inspiration from the 1996 one, but the story develops very differently. First of all this is a love story, the vampire is not the murderer from the first scene, but the victim – who was turned by her vampire girlfriend, who she killed in the process of trying to escape her.

Pearl is not happy to be a vampire and she tries to protect her girlfriend, Leah, from her vampire “sisters” who are pushing her to turn Leah.

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