Ghostbusters just had a nice theatrical re-release. Between that and the upcoming 4k remaster Blu-ray due out on the 16th of September, fans have got Egon, Ray, Winston and Venkman on the brain.
So now's as good a time as any to revisit one of the greatest pieces of practical special-effects work of all time -- the proton pack. Originally, the positron stream was created using traditional compositing over the film, which looks pretty great.
But if you were to make something like that now, it'd be CGI, right? Do a little After Effects work? Well, yeah. You could do that. Or ... you could use a little long-exposure camera work, a combination of lights and some old-fashioned elbow grease instead.
That is precisely what Shanks FX did, and the results are really neat. Check it out:
Of course, it's also important to give credit where credit is due -- yes, those practical lighting effects are neat, but check out the condition on those Real Ghostbusters figures!