Change is never good.
There’s only one thing worse than a crappy sequel to a great movie - when the sequel removes or glosses over everything that made the original great. It’s the sequel that actually ruins the original film by being so absolutely insane in plot, inept in continuity and loaded with sheer suckitude that it erases your brain of any good memories you had of its predecessor. Here are the most ruinous of all movie sequels.
Highlander II: The Quickening (1991)
The original 1986 film Highlander was awesome. Christopher Lambert strutting around New York City with a broadsword in a crazy sorcery flick where “There Can Be Only One.” We could watch that over and over. That is, until 1991 comes around and Highlander II: the Quickening takes a steaming dump all over pretty much everything we learned in the first one. You too can be all powerful! You just have to try really, really hard! Sigh. And this franchise just keeps piling on the dung with more and more sequels. Yeah, turns out we wish there could have only been one.
Spider-Man 3 (2007)
Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man hit theaters in 2002 and helped to kickstart the awesomeness of comic book movies that we see everywhere today. Spider-Man 2 came along two years later and turned out to be even better than the first film. Then Spider-Man 3 decided to give not only the first two films, but all of Peter Parker’s established mythology, a huge middle finger. Oh, and that whole thing about Uncle Ben’s murder which actually gave Peter his entire moral code of “with great power comes great responsibility.” Turns out it was Sandman’s fault all along and he’s really sorry about it. Wait… What?!
The Matrix Reloaded (2003)
The Matrix revolutionized the way sci-fi films were made and became one of the most killer examples of action filmmaking in a long time. It made the Wachowskis instant Hollywood icons, made Keanu Reeves cool again and left fans with the image of Neo as “The One” who was meant to save all of humanity. Then 2003 came along and The Matrix got “Reloaded” and “Revolution’d” which is a fancy way of saying that Neo isn’t actually the god he was in the first film, he’s completely lost, and he’s planning to end the war with the machines by doing some paperwork. Oh, and he can probably die. Nice job, Wachowski brothers siblings.
Live Free Or Die Hard (2007)
One of the coolest things about the Die Hard films was the fact that John McClane (Bruce Willis) was just some grumpy cop who was good with a pistol and could crack wise at the drop of a hat. Live Free or Die Hard decided it was time for McClane, a cop nearing retirement age, to sip a little super hero potion, learn parkour, and become a poor man’s Jason Bourne. Plus we had to watch Kevin Smith “act” and the flick was rated PG-13 which meant McClane’s classic line was changed to “Yippee-ki-yay, buster!” Weaksauce.
Ghostbusters II (1989)
Ivan Reitman’s 1984 classic Ghostbusters might just be one of the greatest comedies of all time. It’s funny, and thrilling, and features an all-star cast of ghost-catching eccentrics. They also know how to kick a little ass in the form of an enormous Stay Puft Marshmallow Man. Moments before the credits rolled Winston exclaimed “I love this town!” That love was short-lived because Ghostbusters II turns the heroes of New York into down-on-their luck schlubs who must perform at kids’ birthday parties, run a dirty bookstore and host a ridiculous psychic show. It’s no surprise that a rumored third film has been in development hell for years. Actually, we’d prefer to watch the damn cartoon with Slimer.
Alien 3 (1992)
Everyone's excited for Ridley Scott’s Alien prequel, Prometheus (check out our review), because the original film is one of the most terrifyingly awesome sci-fi horror hybrids of all time. The sequel (Aliens) is an sci-fi action classic. And then along comes part three, which negates all the cool parts of the previous movie. Hicks? Dead. Newt, the little girl? Also dead. Their deaths happen before Alien 3 begins. We know Michael Biehn dies a lot in movies, but come on! We deserve a better Aliens sequel! And Alien:Resurrection sure as hell didn’t help things either.
Terminator: Rise of the Machine (2003)
1984’s The Terminator features an ass-kicking Arnold Schwarzenegger sent back in time to kill Sarah Connor and help eradicate the human race. The film led to an equally awesome sequel called Terminator 2: Judgment Day. More Arnold. More killing. And more cyborg on human discord. Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines, however, pretty much blows an enormous gaping shotgun hole in the entire plot of the previous films. All that awesome “bringing down Skynet” stuff in T2 was now completely worthless, Miles Dyson sacraficed himself for nothing, and yet they’re still intent on only sending one Terminator back in time. The sad There-Is-No-Hope message of T3 is what single-handedly led to the Emo movement.
Rocky V (1990)
We’re not about to deny the fact that Sly Stallone is the man. Dude has earned the ability to do whatever he wants. But when he handed in his script for Rocky V didn’t anyone say, “Um...this is kind of sad, Mr. Stallone. Why not try a rewrite or two?” Turns out Rocky’s epic triumph over Drago in Rocky IV gave the Italian Stallion brain damage. That means Russia really won, right? We assume that very brain damage is the same thing that gave Stallone the idea that real life horrible boxer Tommy Morrison could actually act. At least Sly had the good sense to redeem himself with 2006’s Rocky Balboa, where he put a proper cap on the series and pretty much acted like Rocky V never happened.