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Where to Watch Every Ghostbusters Movie

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In the realm of supernatural comedy, few franchises boast the cultural significance and enduring charm quite like Ghostbusters. Since its spectral debut in 1984, this iconic series has captivated audiences with its blend of humour, horror, and paranormal hijinks.

Now, as anticipation mounts for the latest instalment in the saga, there’s never been a better time to revisit the original specter-hunting adventures that started it all.

As fans eagerly await the newest chapter in the Ghostbusters saga, there’s no denying the allure of revisiting the beloved classics that first introduced us to the world of proton packs and ectoplasmic encounters. Whether you’re a die-hard aficionado or a curious newcomer, immersing yourself in the original Ghostbusters films is a rite of passage into a realm where the supernatural meets the hilariously absurd.

How many Ghostbusters movies have there been?

There have been three main Ghostbusters movies; Ghostbusters (1984), Ghostbusters II (1989) and Ghostbusters: Afterlife (2021). 

In the original Ghostbusters, the core team of paranormal investigators was brought to life by a stellar cast of comedic talents. At the forefront was Bill Murray as the irreverent and quick-witted Dr. Peter Venkman, whose charm and sarcasm were as integral to the team as his proton pack. Alongside him were Dan Aykroyd as the enthusiastic and inventive Dr. Raymond Stantz, and Harold Ramis as the brilliant yet socially awkward Dr. Egon Spengler, forming a trio of eccentric scientists ready to tackle the supernatural. Ernie Hudson rounded out the group as Winston Zeddemore, the down-to-earth everyman who joined the team later in the film, bringing a grounded perspective to the otherworldly chaos. Together, these actors formed the heart and soul of the Ghostbusters, creating a dynamic ensemble that would solidify their places in cinematic history.

Set 32 years after the events of Ghostbusters II, Ghostbusters: Afterlife starred Carrie CoonFinn WolfhardMckenna Grace, and Paul Rudd, alongside Bill MurrayDan AykroydErnie HudsonAnnie Potts, and Sigourney Weaver reprising their characters from the earlier films.

In 2016 a female-driven reboot was released, starring Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Kate McKinnon, Leslie Jones and Christ Hemsworth – however, this was a separate continuity and not a direct sequel to the original films.

ghostbusters original movie 1984
The original Ghostbusters film was released in 1984. (Credit: Getty) (Credit: Getty)

Who is streaming Ghostbusters?

Unfortunately, it’s not a straight-forward answer for Aussies wanting to watch the original Ghostbusters movies – with some unavailable to stream and others scattered across platforms. But don’t stress – we’ve got all the answers, below. 

Ghostbusters (1984)

Directed by Ivan Reitman, this is the original film that introduced audiences to the team of eccentric paranormal investigators played by Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, Harold Ramis, and Ernie Hudson. At this stage, the 1984 film is available to rent through Prime Video for $3.99 and Apple TV for $4.99.  

Ghostbusters II (1989)

This sequel reunited the original cast as they faced a new supernatural threat to New York City and is also available to rent through Prime Video for $3.99 and Apple TV for $4.99. 

Ghostbusters (2016): This spinoff featured a talented ensemble cast including Kristen Wiig, Melissa McCarthy, Kate McKinnon, and Leslie Jones, who brought a fresh and comedic spin to the beloved paranormal franchise. The movie is currently streaming on Binge and is also available to rent through Prime Video for $3.99 and Apple TV for $4.99. 

Ghostbusters: Afterlife (2021)

Directed by Jason Reitman, son of Ivan Reitman, this film serves as a direct sequel to the original Ghostbusters movies and follows a new generation of Ghostbusters as they uncover their family’s legacy. The film is currently available to stream on Netflix and available to rent through Prime Video for $3.99 and Apple TV for $4.99. 

Ghostbusters 2016 movie
In 2016 a female-led spin-off was released. (Credit: Columbia Pictures) (Credit: Columbia Pictures)

What is Ghostbusters based on? 

Ghostbusters is primarily based on the concept of a team of eccentric individuals who operate as paranormal investigators, capturing and containing ghosts, spirits, and other supernatural entities. The idea was conceived by actor and comedian Dan Aykroyd, who had a deep interest in the paranormal and was inspired by his family’s history of spiritualism. 

It is believed Dan came up with the concept after reading a quantum physics and parapsychology article in the American Society of Psychical Research Journal and then watching movies like Ghost Chasers.

Dan, along with co-writer Harold Ramis, developed the concept into a screenplay, blending elements of comedy, science fiction, and horror. The film draws on various influences, including classic ghost stories, urban legends, and the rich tapestry of paranormal lore, to create its unique and entertaining universe.

ghostbusters movie 2021
The franchise returned in 2021. (Credit: Sony) (Credit: Sony)

Is Ghostbusters too scary for a 7-year-old? 

Whether Ghostbusters is too scary for a 7-year-old largely depends on the individual child’s tolerance for spooky or supernatural themes, as well as their previous exposure to similar content. The movie does contain some mildly frightening scenes involving ghosts and supernatural elements, as well as moments of tension and suspense.

However, Ghostbusters is primarily a comedy with a lighthearted tone, and much of the scary content is balanced by humour and a sense of adventure. Additionally, the ghosts in the film are often portrayed in a cartoonish manner rather than being truly frightening.

All Ghostbusters films are rated PG in Australia which means they are not recommended for viewing by people under the age of 15 without guidance from parents, teachers or guardians.

Is there a new Ghostbusters coming out in 2024?

Yes! Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire was released globally in cinemas on March 21, 2024, and follows the Spengler family as they return to the iconic New York City firehouse where the original Ghostbusters have taken ghost-busting to the next level.

When an ancient artifact unleashes an evil force, both veteran and rookie Ghostbusters must come together to safeguard their home and prevent the world from plunging into a second ice age.

Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire will be available to rent or buy on Prime Video in May, 2024. 

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