There is nothing better than a great sequel. Because sequels are so often so highly anticipated, they can often disappoint, so it’s all the sweeter when they don’t. Over the years, we’ve seen a number of sequels that met or even exceeded what the first film was capable of.
For every great sequel that gets made, though, there’s also one that’s terrible. This list chronicles those titles, from the ill-advised to the outright offensive. Many of the movies on this list never needed sequels to begin with, but they got them, and now we’re here, detailing the many ways they disappoint.
Sometimes, a terrible sequel can be almost so bad that it’s enjoyable, and Age of Extinction almost gets there. Unfortunately, this soft reboot of the franchise that features a new roster of human characters is too long and digressive to be any fun on a rewatch.
The action in this Michael Bay sequel is turgid and impossible to follow, and Mark Wahlberg is horribly cast as a small-time inventor. The movie, which is also loaded with product placement, made plenty of money, and was not the final nail in this franchise’s coffin, even if it probably should have been.
Most of these movies are bad enough that you want to study them, but The Sting II is so bad, and so boring, that forgetting it completely is the only acceptable course of action. The first Sting won Best Picture, and cemented Robert Redford and Paul Newman as one of the iconic movie duos in cinema history.
Its sequel proved just how rare the magic of that first film was, but in the most uninteresting way possible. The plotting is bad, the performances are rough, and the whole thing feels entirely uninspired from the jump.
How do you make a Blues Brothers movie without John Belushi? Not well, apparently. Blues Brothers 2000 at least features some solid music, but nothing else about the movie is able to re-capture what made the first film so special.
Elwood’s sidekick is as terrible as every other kid sidekick you’ve ever seen in a movie, and most of the jokes don’t really land either. John Belushi’s death should have made any future Blues Brothers movies impossible, but Dan Aykroyd and company insisted on trying anyway.
If ever a movie existed that shouldn’t have become a franchise, it was Jaws. Even so, Jaws: The Revenge exists, and purports to be the story of a family being hunted by a shark out for revenge.
The reasons for that revenge are never entirely clear, and it is a plot point in the movie that the shark will travel to the Bahamas from the coast of Massachusetts to kill its prey. That’s a determined shark. Jaws: The Revenge is utterly ludicrous, and everything that the original Jaws managed to avoid in telling its own shark-infested horror story.
Independence Day is far from perfect, but it does have many of the qualities that help a movie stand the test of time. The effects still look solid, it has some great performances, and one incredibly memorable monologue.
Resurgence has almost none of that, and is almost entirely forgettable as a result. There’s no charisma coming from the young actors at the movie’s center, and the stakes feel too high for anything to really matter. It’s remarkably unremarkable, and filled with goopy CGI to boot.
Sharon Stone created an iconic character in Basic Instinct, and she brings much of that same raw sex appeal to the sequel. Unfortunately, the rest of Basic Instinct 2 is far too canned and corny to keep up with her.
Instead of a compelling Michael Douglas, Stone’s Catherine is now facing off against the much less interesting David Morrissey. She puts in a truly Herculean effort to make the movie the least bit compelling, but she doesn’t come close to saving a project that seems doomed from the moment anyone suggested they make it.
The first Caddyshack is a genuine comedy classic, and the less said about its sequel the better. If you want to know precisely how bad Caddyshack II is, ask the movie’s director, who gave it a one-star review on Letterboxd along with the text: “I should never have made this movie!! What was I thinking?”
Rodney Dangerfield penned the screenplay for this sequel, but hated it so much that he quit before production began. The result is a movie that feels so unfunny it makes you wonder whether it’s even possible that the first one was as funny as you remember it being.
The first Space Jam feels like something of a marketing ploy for everyone involved, but it’s got nothing on A New Legacy. The film is crammed with so much Warner Bros. IP that it feels almost absurd, and the movie tries to get around this by having Warner Bros. act as the movie’s meta-villain.
LeBron James is not bad at the center of this cinematic re-heat, but not much else about the movie works. It’s a sequel without a purpose other than brand extension, and it’s not even very good on that front.
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