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Sequels we wish we'd missed

The history of film followups suggests a spate of new sequels will be big time bombs.
DEREK TSE, Special to The Free Press   2003-06-10 04:18:14  

It does seem as if every other movie these days is a sequel. Hot on the heels of such recent "Part 2s" as The Matrix Reloaded and 2 Fast 2 Furious, we'll soon be getting such films as Dumb and Dumberer: When Harry Met Lloyd; Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle; Legally Blonde 2: Red White & Blonde; Bad Boys II, Like Hell: Jeepers Creepers 2; Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines; Spy Kids 3-D: Game Over and, in the ultimate incestuous marriage of lousy Hollywood sequels, Freddy vs. Jason.

That's a lot of sequels -- and if history has taught us anything, the majority of them will be horrible. So, to celebrate the arrival of Dumb And Dumberer, which gleefully points out how stupid it is in its own trailer, we've prepared this sampling of some of the worst movie sequels of all time. We know we've missed a lot of them, but there's only so much ink a page can hold. Guess you'll have to wait for the sequel.

Terrible sequels starring few or none of the original casts

So you're a movie executive who's been told the stars of the original don't want to appear in your lousy sequel. No problem -- you'll just put in an entirely new cast and hope the audience that embraced the original will be so stupid they'll be lining up to plunk down their $13 for actors they've never heard of. We have six words for you: Time to fire up that resume.

- Beyond the Poseidon Adventure (1979)

Gives real meaning to the term "disaster movie." A new ensemble of shipwrecked stars (Michael Caine, Sally Field, Telly Savalas) ventures into the submerged wreck of the luxury ocean liner. Too bad none of the original cast is back -- you'd think they could have at least sneaked in a cameo of Shelley Winters' bloated corpse floating around in the water.

- The Sting II (1983)

No Paul Newman, Robert Redford or Robert Shaw? No problem! Just replace them with Jackie Gleason, Mac Davis and Oliver Reed and nobody will notice. And nobody -- as in audiences -- did notice this tired "comic" caper when it came out 10 years after the original.

- Home Alone 3 (1997)

Sure, Home Alone 2: Lost in New York was a bad flick -- but at least Macaulay Culkin, Joe Pesci and Daniel Stern were in that one. Anybody remember Alex D. Linz, Olek Krupa and Rya Kihlstedt? Does anybody want to remember them?

- Speed 2: Cruise Control (1997)

Pop quiz: What happens when you take out Keanu Reeves, pair Sandra Bullock with a guy (Jason Patric) even more wooden and set the action on a cruise liner instead of a bus? We wish we didn't know the answer.

The worst sequels ever

Until they make Popeye 2 or From Ruben to Clay: A Tale of Two American Idols, Part II, these execrable followups will always have a spot in our hall of shame.

- Jaws: The Revenge (1987)

The incredibly stupid premise has what is ostensibly the original shark from Jaws seeking revenge on the widowed wife (Lorraine Gary) and children of Sheriff Brody, the man who killed the monster years before. There's also Mario Van Peebles, who effects an atrocious Jamaican accent, and Michael Caine who, with this movie, cemented his reputation as an actor who'd say yes to anything.

- Batman & Robin (1997)

Nipples on the Bat armour, campy, glitzy rollerblading action sequences, and Arnold Schwarzenegger as the villainous Mr. Freeze tossing off lines like: "Let's kick some ice" and "My name is Freeze; learn it well, for it's the chilling sound of your doom!" Need we go on?

- Superman IV: The Quest for Peace (1987)

The Superman series was pretty cheesy to begin with, but it got even worse with its last instalment, which featured Christopher Reeve, looking embarrassed and duking it out with a curly-haired, wrestler look-alike villain, Nuclear Man.

- Star Trek V: The Final Frontier (1989)

This unwatchable mess was, not surprisingly, directed by star William Shatner. Apparently, it's about the search for God, but we could have saved Kirk and Spock the trouble: How can there be a God who would allow this?

Prequels that ruin your love of the original

While we're certain Dumb and Dumberer will eventually wind up in this category, for the time being, it's the domain of a couple of not-so-special, big-budget extravaganzas in poor acting, tepid direction and terrible screenwriting.

- Star Wars - Episode I: The Phantom Menace (1999)

- Star Wars - Episode II : Attack of the Clones (2002)

Believe us, there was nothing we would have liked better than for these two movies to have become instant classics when they first came out. Instead, they were crushing bores, featuring too many scenes of old guys in robes spouting really bad dialogue and nothing that made the original Star Wars trilogy such iconic pop cultural touchstones.

Copyright © The London Free Press 2001,2002,2003

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