' ' Cinema Romantico: Ghostbusters: An Appreciation In Quotes

Monday, June 08, 2009

Ghostbusters: An Appreciation In Quotes

Twenty-five years ago today Ivan Reitman's "Ghostbusters" hit theaters which means that twenty-five years ago and a few days after today I saw "Ghostbusters" at the Valley West 3 with my mom which led to us driving home and reciting out loud in the car the funniest quotes we could remember. It is one of my earliest, and still one of my fondest, moviegoing memories. ("Ghostbusters" is also the first movie poster that I ever put on my wall.)

In fact, that same car ride home after "Ghostbusters" provided arguably my first lesson in the art of screenwriting when my mom and I had more or less the following conversation:

Me: "Mom, remember when Louis couldn't get into the restaurant? I don't understand why the doors would have been locked?"
Mom: "Well, the point isn't really why they were locked."
Me: "Why not?"
Mom: "Remember how Louis kept getting locked out of his own apartment? They did that to set us up for when he got locked out of the restaurant."


At that instant everything just came into focus - bam! - and I think it totally shaped me into being a person who hates it when others bring those idiotic "real world" questions into movies.

One term thrown around a lot in regards to movies is this: Quotable. As in, man, that is a Quotable Movie. "Ghostbusters" is one of the most Quotable Movies ever made. In fact, comedically speaking, per capita I think it has to be the most Quotable Movie ever made. Most comedies are trying to be funny all the time but might have stretches where it isn't quite as funny. "Ghostbusters", however, has stretches where it isn't even trying to be funny, yet when it is trying to be funny it's always funny and usually exceptionally funny.

There are so many quotes in "Ghostbusters" that need to recorded on bronze tablets and locked up in the Smithsonian and, thus, I thought what better way to commemorate the 25th Anniversary than by posting the film's 25 Best Quotes? So, armed with my trusty notebook and pen and a six-pack of Carlsberg, I settled in to re-watch straight through, no breaks, for the first time in a long time, "Ghostbusters", and composed my list. Man oh man, was it a blast.

Your effects may be dated but your movie has not aged - "Ghostbusters", here's lookin' at you.

25. "If I'm wrong, nothing happens, we go to jail, peacefully, quietly. We'll enjoy it! But if I'm right, and we can stop this thing...Lenny, you will have saved the lives of millions of registered voters."

24. "What are you supposed to be, some kind of cosmonaut?"

23. "Nice shootin', Tex!"

22. "I order you to cease any and all supernatural activity and return forethwith to your place of origin or to the nearest, convenient parallel dimension!"

21. "This job is definitely not worth eleven five a year."

20. "You're such a humanitarian."
"I don't think he's human."


19. "I'm terrified beyond the capacity for rational thought." (Alternate: "This looks extraordinarily bad.")

18. "They hate this." (This line, of course, requires the visual aid of Bill Murray playing the piano keys as he says it but I'm still including it.)

17. "You're more like a gameshow host."

16. "Boy, the superintendent's gonna be pissed."

15. "Where are you from? Originally?"

14. "Symmetrical book stacking. Just like the Philadelphia mass turbulence of 1947."
"You're right. No human being would stack books like this."


13. "Print is dead."

12. "Twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, no job is too big, no fee is too big."

11. "Janine, someone with your qualifications would have no trouble finding a top-flight job in either the food service or housekeeping industries."

10. "I'm studying the effects of negative reinforcement on ESP ability."
"The effect? I'll tell you what the effect is, it's pissing me off!"


9. "I looked at the trap, Ray."

8. "Ghostbusters, what do ya want?!" (This one is all in the delivery but I'm reasonably certain you know how it was delivered.)

7. "You don't know what it's like out there. I've worked in the private sector. They expect results."

6. "Why worry? Each of us is carrying an unlicensed nuclear accelerator on his back."

5. "I collect spores, molds and fungus."

4. "Back off, man. I'm a scientist."

3. "What about the Twinkie?"

2. "This reminds me of the time you tried to drill a hole through your head. Remember that?"
"That would've worked if you hadn't stopped me."


(I think you know what's coming. As we know, there are many contenders in the ongoing Greatest Movie Quote Of All Time argument. I firmly believe the following belongs in that argument.)

1. "Let's show this pre-historic bitch how we do things downtown."

10 comments:

Wretched Genius said...

For the record, Louis couldn't get into the restaurant because he was trying to enter through the patio doors rather than the front entrance. Seeing as how it was clearly not the season for the patio to be open, the doors would have been locked. Alternatively, they may not have been patio doors, but emergency exit doors. Either way, they were clearly not the main entrance.


>>I think it totally shaped me into being a person who hates it when others bring those idiotic "real world" questions into movies.<<

Clearly you're just jealous of those, like myself, who are able to find out the answers. Ask Rory why every movie villain always has jugs of gasoline just sitting around in the back of their car. He'll tell you, because he knows.

Nicholas Prigge said...

Does he also know why in "Armageddon" Liv Tyler was allowed to mingle with NASA employees wearing foil suits?

Wretched Genius said...

1. NASA are notorious Aerosmith fans.

2. Some questions in movies simply cannot be asked. Scientists refer to this as the Bay Effect. Is is directly related to the theatrical precept known as the Bruckheimer Uncertainty.

3. If Liv Tyler showed up at your job, try telling me you wouldn't grant her access to whatever she wanted.

Nicholas Prigge said...

"Some questions in movies simply cannot be asked. Scientists refer to this as the Bay Effect. Is is directly related to the theatrical precept known as the Bruckheimer Uncertainty."

That is brilliant, my friend. I'm using it every chance I get.

-"Why would the aliens in 'Signs' come to a planet covered in water if water is their weakness?"
-"Well, that's the Bay Effect. See also: The Bruckheimer Uncertainty."

Wretched Genius said...

>>"Why would the aliens in 'Signs' come to a planet covered in water if water is their weakness?"<<

Why would humans build a major city below sea level when it is located next to the ocean? Why are there people who still live at the base of active volcanoes? Firefly was canceled before it could complete a single season, yet The Hills just wrapped up season 5.

Every species has its share of idiots. Besides, they came to harvest the humans. If a planet was 90% acid, but the other 10% contained creatures with gasoline for blood, you know we'd invade.

Nicholas Prigge said...

I think what we've established today is that I need to keep you on retainer as my Drunken Real World Movie Question Expert. I've had so many arguments with people about the aliens/water in "Signs" thing and your point would have cut them down instantly. We would TOTALLY invade.

Jacob said...

I love this post and the following comment thread, but there is something seriously missing.

"Venkman, I saw it, I saw it, I saw it"

"He's right here Ray. He's looking at me"

"Disgusting little bugger, isn't he?"

"I think he can hear you"

This should be on an all time quote list, not just a Ghostbuster quote list. Dr. Raymond Stantz with that cigarette stuck to his lip. Pure comedy genius.

Nicholas Prigge said...

Fantastic point! Dan Aykroyd smoked in this movie. Bill Murray smoked in this movie. Ernie Hudson smoked in this movie. This movie was rated PG.

I repeat, PG.

I saw it when I was seven years old. Did it make me want to run out and buy a pack of cigarettes? No. Not at all. Not in any way, shape or form. Shouldn't these health groups be more concerned with getting junk food stocked vending machines out of grade schools than with smoking in the movies?

Rory Larry said...

No "we came, we saw, we kicked its ass"? (or the brilliant AFN approved adlib..."What a boat load of fun that was")

Apparently almost all of Bill Murray's dialogue was adlibbed in this movie. They basically just let him go to town.

Rory Larry said...

Oh and I most definitely do know why bad guys carry tanks of gasoline around all the time.