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12 of the Finest ‘Legacy Sequels’ Ever (and eight That Kinda Suck)






I’m not wild about our present popular culture obsession with nostalgia, partially as a result of we appear be reaching a degree the place a dearth of unique cinematic fare goes to depart the nostalgia miners of the future with nothing to work with.

This summer time’s premiere long-awaited sequel is Indiana Jones and the Dial of Future, truly the franchise’s second legacy sequel after 2008’s Kingdom of the Crystal Cranium.

Additionally coming this 12 months: October’s The Exorcist: Believer, which sounds prefer it’s going to be a type of sequels that ignores all of the awkward center motion pictures in favor of a back-to-basics method. Kenan and Kel are again collectively in a forthcoming sequel to 1997’s Good Burger; whereas that 12 months’s different large film, The Full Monty, is getting a sequel sequence on Hulu. Even the Gremlins are returning to chow down after midnight in a new animated sequence on HBO Max.

It’s a wealthy vein, is what I’m saying, and Hollywood has been mining it for years now. Whereas we await the following previous factor to be new once more, listed below are 12 legacy sequels that labored—and eight that actually didn’t.

Didn’t work: Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Cranium (2008)


Sequel to: the Indiana Jones trilogy (1981–1989)

Many people consider the Indiana Jones sequence with large fondness, however on a movie-to-movie foundation, it affords much less consistency than we have a tendency to recollect, even when they’re all watchable. Crystal Cranium isn’t execrable, but it surely’s actually the weakest of the 4 movies, that includes competent however unmemorable set items and a bland arc for Indy and his shock son Mutt (Shia LaBeouf, from again when he was being positioned as the following large factor). Karen Allen makes a welcome return as Marion Ravenwood and Cate Blanchett is having enjoyable as a Soviet femme fatale, but it surely all feels a bit warmed-over.

The place to stream: Paramount+

Labored: Physician Sleep (2019)


Sequel to: The Shining (1980)

Director Mike Flanagan (Hush, The Haunting of Hill Home, Midnight Mass) has a well-earned fame as a grasp of “elevated” horror, and he works a little bit of magic with Physician Sleep. The novel on which the film is predicated is late-career Stephen King, which suggests opinions on it had been already cut up, and Flanagan confronted the problem of crafting a Shining sequel that might each adapt the ebook and fulfill passionate followers of the unique Stanley Kubrick movie. Even given all that, the film feels surprisingly contemporary, discovering a coronary heart (within the relationship between Ewan McGregor’s grown-up Danny Torrence and a younger lady who appears to share his magical powers) and horror (embodied by Rebecca Ferguson’s villainous Rose the Hat) amidst the IP necessities.

Lease digitally: Prime Video, Vudu, Redbox

Didn’t work: Coming 2 America (2021)

Coming 2 America – Official Trailer

Sequel to: Coming to America (1988)

Eddie Murphy adopted up the good Dolemite is My Title with this long-awaited sequel that was forgotten virtually as quickly because it dropped straight to Prime Video after Paramount bought Amazon the rights amid the heights of the pandemic. The one actual laughs come out of recycled gags from the unique, leaving Coming 2 with out a lot of a purpose to exist. Even worse, the plot activates a wildly ill-conceived operating gag involving date rape, which makes the film really feel immediately extra uncomfortably dated than its three-decade-old predecessor.

The place to stream: Prime Video

Labored: High Gun: Maverick (2022)

High Gun: Maverick | NEW Official Trailer (2022 Film) – Tom Cruise

Sequel to: High Gun (1986)

For higher and worse, High Gun: Maverick traded the homosexual camp stylings of the unique for pure motion spectacle, and the result’s a film that’s good sufficient to know that pure cinematic spectacle, when accomplished proper, is sufficient. It saved film theaters and was ok to earn a Finest image Oscar nomination, a uncommon feat for a legacy sequel—although in contrast to The Godfather, Half III, this one individuals truly like.

The place to stream: Prime Video, Paramount+

Labored: Reside Free or Die Exhausting (2007)

Reside Free or Die Exhausting (2007) – Theatrical Trailer [HD]

Sequel to: The Die Exhausting trilogy (1988 – 1995)

Bruce Willis’ first return to the career-making position of John McClane was time on the motion pictures, with the already cantankerous motion hero slipping simply again into the footwear (or not) of the over-the-hill detective as he’s drawn into one another journey. With a chilling Timothy Olyphant because the central villain, that is arguably one of the best of the Die Exhausting sequels. Sadly, followup A Good Day to Die Exhausting is certainly the worst, which simply goes to indicate you can by no means belief this stuff.

The place to stream: Max

Didn’t work: Area Jam: A New Legacy (2021)

Area Jam: A New Legacy – Trailer 1

Sequel to: Area Jam (1996)

The unique walked a advantageous line, mixing mental properties (and promoting footwear) whereas sustaining a lightness of contact that made for a enjoyable 90 minutes on the motion pictures—or at the least, gentle sufficient that individuals who had been youngsters when it got here out appear to nonetheless prefer it. The second is longer, louder, much less humorous and, maybe most significantly, barely made a dent within the popular culture panorama, largely as a result of a lot of the jokes are simply lazy popular culture references. It’s not terrible, but it surely principally makes you want you had been watching the primary one. (Or anything.)

The place to stream: Max

Labored: Creed (2015)

Creed – Official Trailer [HD]

Sequel to: the Rocky sequence (1976 – 2006)

Just like the character himself, the Rocky franchise has had plenty of legacy sequel comebacks over the many years, together with 2006’s moderately good Rocky Balboa. However whereas that film felt like an epilogue, Creed utterly reinvents the sequence with out completely remaking it. Rocky’s nonetheless right here, however takes on the mentor position to Michael B. Jordan’s Donnie Creed. The tender reboot was profitable sufficient to kick off a brand new run of flicks with Jordan within the lead and spark discussions about each a brand new Stallone-lead movie and a Dolph Lundgren-starring spin-off for Rocky IV villain Ivan Drago.

The place to stream: Sling

Didn’t work: Rambo (2008)

Rambo (2008) – Official Trailer – Sylvester Stallone Motion Film HD

Sequel to: the Rambo trilogy (1982 – 1988)

This one would possibly rely in your standpoint: Rambo was a modest field workplace success, and Stallone clearly understands what Rambo followers need from a Rambo film: over-the-top violence and a figuratively (if not actually) bulletproof title character. On these counts, the film delivers, however the violence on this followup so wildly over-the-top that it quickly grows boring. The plot tries to make some form of critical level about situations dealing with missionaries in Burma, but it surely’s so cartoonishly bloody it’s arduous to take any of it significantly.

The place to stream: Peacock

Labored: The Colour of Cash (1986)

The Colour Of Cash – Trailer – HQ

Sequel to: The Hustler (1961)

Paul Newman revives his memorable character from The Hustler in Martin Scorsese’s sequel, which lastly gained Paul Newman his first and solely Finest Actor Oscar after a number of nominations. It’s not fairly on the degree of the 1961 unique, however Newman and Tom Cruise are well-matched in a film that honors the legacy whereas standing by itself deserves.

Lease digitally: Prime Video, Vudu, Redbox

Didn’t work: The Two Jakes (1990)

The Two Jakes – 1990 – Trailer

Sequel to: Chinatown (1974)

It’s not as unhealthy as its fame, however the Jack Nicholson-directed sequel to Chinatown flopped on the field workplace, and deserved to. In growth hell for years, the film’s chaotic manufacturing historical past is evidenced within the completed product: Nicholson’s route is okay, however the story is overly difficult to the purpose of being uninteresting, and provides nothing to the unique.

The place to stream: Prime Video, Paramount+

Didn’t work: Texasville (1990)

Texasville Official Trailer #1 – Loyd Catlett Film (1990) HD

Sequel to: The Final Image Present (1971)

The place The Final Image Present, liked by critics and audiences alike, introduced the arrival of director Peter Bogdanovich because the cinematic voice of his era, Texasville advised that, maybe, the director had handed his prime (and was in any case nicely previous his time working with ex-wife and collaborator Polly Platt, whose affect, or lack thereof, is felt keenly all through director’s filmography). From the unique’s leisurely coming-of-age epic, we get an ill-conceived romcom with nice appearing expertise on show, however not a lot else.

The place to stream: Surprisingly (given its forged and director), Texasville isn’t streaming anyplace. Which might be for one of the best.

Labored: Blade Runner 2049 (2017)

BLADE RUNNER 2049 – Official Trailer

Sequel to: Blade Runner (1982)

It’s maybe overlong, however Denis Villeneuve’s Blade Runner followup is visually gorgeous, selecting up on most of the philosophical themes of the unique whereas including lots of its personal. Ryan Gosling is nice within the lead, and Villeneuve manages to coax a powerful late-career efficiency out of the more and more curmudgeonly Harrison Ford.

The place to stream: Hulu

Didn’t work: Independence Day: Resurgence (2016)

Independence Day: Resurgence | Official Trailer [HD] | twentieth Century FOX

Sequel to: Independence Day (1996)

The unique isn’t any masterpiece however stands as a memorably enjoyable, if kinda dumb, mega-blockbuster. The sequel has some respectable set items, however that’s about all it has; the offscreen dying of Will Smith’s Captain Steven Hiller character each doomed the sequel and regarded like a sensible profession film on Will Smith’s half. Worst of all, the film feels prefer it exists to arrange one more sequel that clearly isn’t coming.

Lease digitally: Prime Video, Vudu, Redbox

Labored: Unhealthy Boys for Life (2020)

BAD BOYS FOR LIFE – Official Trailer

Sequel to: Unhealthy Boys (1995) and Unhealthy Boys 2 (2003)

The primary two motion pictures traded completely on the charisma and chemistry between leads Will Smith and Martin Lawrence whereas being weighed down by the shiny, however uninteresting Michael Bay type. This third one, beneath administrators Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah, acknowledges the star energy of its leads whereas additionally doing a much better job than its predecessors of balancing comedy and motion. It’s not simply one of the best Unhealthy Boys sequel, it’s one of the best of the sequence.

Digital rental: Prime Video, Apple TV+, Redbox, Vudu

Labored: Mad Max: Fury Highway (2015)

Mad Max: Fury Highway – Official Primary Trailer [HD]

Sequel to: the Mad Max trilogy (1979 – 1985)

Director George Miller returned to his Mad Max sequence in 2015 with this over-the-top triumph, an motion masterpiece that’s as loud and violent as it’s narratively canny, subverting the male-dominated excesses of the unique movie by putting Charlize Theron’s Furiosa on the middle of a post-modern, apocalyptic western.

The place to stream: AMC+

Labored: Psycho II (1983)

Psycho II (1983) – It’s Beginning Once more Scene (3/10) | Movieclips

Sequel to: Psycho (1960)

A Psycho sequel has no enterprise present, frankly, however this one’s a minor triumph, revisiting Norman Bates (Anthony Perkins) and the Bates Motel whereas enjoying on our expectations and discovering new issues to say in regards to the character. It’s probably the greatest (and least cheesy) slasher movies of the ‘80s, with a strong concluding twist.

The place to stream: IndieFlix, hire digitally on Prime Video, Vudu, Redbox

Didn’t work: Ghostbusters: Afterlife (2021)


Sequel to: Ghostbusters (1984) and Ghostbusters 2 (1989)

Even whereas (admirably) making an attempt one thing completely different (shifting the ghostbustin’ out of town, for one factor), Afterlife spends an excessive amount of time trying backward—introducing new characters and a brand new era, solely to situate them in the course of a hunt for easter eggs from the unique film. It’s advantageous, with some candy moments, however performs an excessive amount of and too usually as a tribute to the sooner motion pictures. [Whispers] Ghostbusters 2016 was higher

The place to stream: Starz

Labored: The Matrix Resurrections (2021)

The Matrix Resurrections – Official Trailer 1

Sequel to: the Matrix trilogy (1999 – 2003)

This one’s about as polarizing as they arrive, with loads of Matrix followers completely hating it. For me, it’s by far one of the best of the sequels. After many years of lazy “take the purple capsule” references ( you, Elon Musk) it makes clear that it’s not that straightforward, utilizing imagery involving literal mirrors to remind us that, finally, it’s not the machines which can be the issue, however our personal capability to face our personal flawed humanity. That meta type is grounded in a love story between Neo and Trinity and, if there’s a clunkiness to a few of the plot beats (why and the way are the even alive once more?), I’d moderately have author/director Lana Wachowski’s distinctive type and voice than one million different polished, committee-made sequels decided to say nothing.

The place to stream: Max

Labored: Candyman (2021)

Candyman – Official Trailer 2

Sequel to: the Candyman trilogy (1992 – 1999)

Nia DaCosta’s Candyman film performs as a reboot, however finally introduces sufficient components (and characters) from the unique that it really works in addition to a direct sequel. DaCosta and firm take the nice racial commentary intentions of the unique movie and introduce a Black perspective, going far deeper of their exploration of the methods by which our tradition turns marginalized victims into villains, and with extremely ingenious and good visible thrives.

The place to stream: Prime Video, Paramount+

Labored: Invoice & Ted Face the Music (2020)

BILL & TED FACE THE MUSIC Official Trailer #2 (2020)

Sequel to: Invoice & Ted’s Glorious Journey (1989) and Invoice & Ted’s Bogus Journey (1991)

Equal elements candy and goofy, it didn’t harm the reception to the Invoice & Ted sequel that it got here out only a few months into the pandemic, a second once we wanted candy and goofy greater than ever. The film is aware of precisely what we would like from a middle-aged Invoice & Ted, and has enjoyable giving it to us.

The place to stream: Freevee, hire digitally on Redbox

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