Thirty years ago tomorrow–that being June 8th, 1984–Columbia Pictures released the movie Ghostbusters and it became one of the most successful and iconic comedies of all time as it splattered screens around the world with a stream of ectoplasmic slime and roasted marshmallow fluff.
The movie was the brainchild of Saturday Night Live star and writer Dan Aykroyd who drew inspiration from his family’s long history of studying and experiencing paranormal phenomenon. He originally wrote it as a dark, futuristic comedy that resembled more of a horror movie than a comedy. However, director Ivan Reitman and writer Harold Ramis saw some plucky potential in Aykroyd’s insane concept and all three helped turn it into the classic, quotable movie that we’re still talking about 30 years later.
It’s basically a giant mix of everything that makes a movie great: ridiculous special effects, monsters around every corner, Sigourney Weaver in a see-thru dress barking like a dog. The true gems are the dialogue, most of which were improvised on the spot by stars Bill Murray and Dan Aykroyd. They punctuate the movie’s creative concept like the right hook from a powerful, left handed jab that rings in your ears and jumps around in head years after you’ve seen the movie. Murray’s lines alone are so good that producers are still trying to stuff him into that beige jumpsuit just so he can make a damn cameo in the third Ghostbusters movie that’s trapped in a containment unit of slow development. They are so embedded in our brains that we didn’t even have to look up our 10 favorite lines from the greatest sci-fi/horror comedy ever made…
“Back off, man. I’m a scientist.”
“He slimed me.”
“Maybe now you’ll never slime a guy with a positron collider, huh?”
“We came, we saw, we kicked its ass!”
“Gozer the Traveler. He will come in one of the pre-chosen forms. During the rectification of the Vuldrini, the traveler came as a large and moving Torg! Then, during the third reconciliation of the last of the McKetrick supplicants, they chose a new form for him: that of a giant Slor! Many Shuvs and Zuuls knew what it was to be roasted in the depths of the Slor that day, I can tell you!”
“That’s a big Twinkie.”
“Human sacrifice, dogs and cats living together… mass hysteria!”
“Ray, when someone asks if you’re a god, you say yes!”
“I tried to think of the most harmless thing. Something I loved from my childhood. Something that could never ever possibly destroy us. Mr. Stay Puft!”
“Let’s show this prehistoric bitch how we do things downtown–THROW IT!”