Tuesday, November 17, 2009


Kill me, I love sequels. I get a kick out of going back to a world I loved the first or second time around.

Now, I'm not usually into the massive Hollywood sequel machine. I wasn't clamoring for Transformers 2. But I like sequels if for no other reason than to go back to the warm and fuzzy place I was when I watched the original.

And I may be in the minority, but I don't believe that sequels somehow tarnish the movies before it. If anything, I think as the sequels progressively get worse, as is mostly the case, it makes the original that much better by comparison.

So, here is my list of sequels I'd like to see get made.

10. The Exorcist 4. I know. All the sequels since the original have sucked. Actually, Part III wasn't too bad despite a weird dream sequence featuring Patrick Ewing. Anyway, even though most the other sequels and both prequels to the film buried the franchise in crap, I'd still like to see another installment get made. Return the series to Georgetown, bring back Linda Blair, and treat the film as seriously as William Friedkin treated the original. Probability Factor: 4. Both prequels are infamous for losing money for the studio, but with many horror franchises getting the reboot treatment these days, there's always hope that the pea soup will fly once again.

9. Cliffhanger 2. I'll admit, I'm a Sylvester Stallone apologist. I've always liked him even when he was making crap like Get Carter and Eye See You. So I'd be up for seeing another installment of one of Stallone's better action movies, which was released right before his career went into the tank. And hey, if Stallone can resurrect Rocky and Rambo and have those movies not suck, then I'd be willing to watch him bring this back too. Probability Factor: 5. There were rumors floating around the internet in the late 90's about a sequel entitled, The Dam, but nothing ever came of it. Based on Stallone's recent career resurgence, he might blow the dust off that script and put it into quick turnaround.

8. Dumb and Dumber 2. Forget the "prequel" ever happened. Re-teaming Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels for a sequel and getting the Farrelly Bros. to direct is the only way another Dumb and Dumber movie can ever be made. And based on their respective slacking careers, everyone involved might be up for another go around. Probability Factor: 6. It wouldn't surprise me one bit to hear this sequel get announced tomorrow or in a couple of years.

7. Bram Stoker's Dracula: The Un-Dead. Stoker's descendant just published a squel to his great-granduncle's original book, and it's said to be more like The Da Vinci Code than the original novel. I don't care. Just get Francis Ford Coppola back in the director's chair, Wojciech Kilar back at the composer's stand, and Gary Oldman back in that awesome red robe! The 1992 Dracula film remains to this day my #1 guilty pleasure film of all time and I would love to see the same crew tackle the new Dracula book, which has already been optined for a movie. Probability Factor: 9. The movie is going to be made, but I seriously doubt whether any of the cast or crew from the 1992 film will sign up. That said, I am a big Dracula fan, so barring Uwe Boll becoming the director, I'll be there on opening night.

6. Gladiator 2. The original Gladiator was a financial and critical success. If it weren't for the pesky fact that Maximus (Russell Crowe) died at the end of the film, I bet that a second Gladiator would have been out years ago. Despite his character's death in the first film, Crowe and director Ridley Scott were so interested in making a sequel they went to singer/screenwriter Nick Cave (The Proposition) and asked him to write a script. Cave did and it's one of the most buzzed about scripts floating around the internet today. According to a lucky bastard who read it, Cave's script is both bizzare and fascinating, as the now-dead Maximus is rented out by the Roman gods to do their dirty work. This means being reincarnated, of course. The kicker is that toward the end of the film, Maximus is granted immortality on Earth (he really just wants to join his wife and child in the afterlife), and in a montage it's revealed that Maximus has lived on and fought in every war that has ever been waged since the fall of the Roman Empire. The closing shot is of Maximus looking at himself in a Pentagon bathroom mirror. Woah. Probability Factor: 2. Studios balked at the metaphysical mumbo-jumbo sprinkled throughout the script and Crowe and Scott moved on to other projects. It probably would have been made by now if it's ever gonna happen, and Crowe and Scott aren't getting any younger. Don't think about it for too long at the risk of feeling old, but it's almost been 10 years since the original Gladiator was released. That said, Cave's script has generated somewhat of a cult following on the internet, so there's a small chance that someone could shrug their shoulders one day and say "let's make this bloody movie!"

5. Halloween 9. I hated Rob Zombie's remake. I never saw his version of Halloween 2 and it sounds like the rumored Halloween 3-D is going to be another blatant money-grab. What I long to see is a return to the series' roots, which was about actually scaring the audience. Not beating them over the head with torture-porn or watered down origin stories (what the hell was all that Thorn shit anyway?), just a return to a well-made slasher film about a guy stalking teenagers on Halloween night in suburbia. When Quentin Tarantino was attached to Halloween 6 (yes, you read that right. Producer Moustapha Akkad said QT's version would be "too bloody" and then went with a version of Halloween 6 which featured a guy's head exploding), he said his vision for a sequel would be a lot like the beginning of Halloween II, when Michael Myers was trying to get out of Haddonfield. There is a lot of potential for good characters and stories in a voyeuristic Halloween sequel. I also envision a very DePalma-esque feel, too. Cameras moving through walls, long takes -- all the stuff that made the original movie one of the best horror movies ever made. Probability Factor: 6. Not counting Halloween 3-D, I'm betting there will be another sequel made to the franchise's original storyline. Finding someone who will treat it as something more than a stepping stone to a bigger career in movies is the challenge.

4. Terminator 5. I'll be the first to admit that Terminator Salvation was a very flawed film, which is why I want to see another sequel improve upon that film. Salvation's script went through several writers and versions and it feels like it when you watch the movie. But when I first saw it in theaters, it felt like there was a very good movie in there somewhere. It also begged for an Extended Cut with more exposition and character development. But still, what ended up on the screen wasn't all bad, and both Sam Worthington and Anton Yelchin kicked ass in their roles while Christian Bale was flat as John Conner. There are also so many directions the series can go in, and director McG has stated that he sees this as a new trilogy. The rights to the Terminator series are up for grabs as we speak, so it's likely that some studio will make a run at a fifth movie, which means that the return of McG, Bale or anyone else from Salvation is up in the air. But based on the troubling finished product that was Salvation, that may not be a bad thing. Probability Factor: 8. When the rights are purchased, the studio who ponied up the cash to buy it will likely put a sequel into quick turnaround to protect their investment.

3. The Little Lebowski. The Coen Bros. have never made a sequel, but if ever there was a Coen Bros. movie ripe for one, it's The Big Lebowski. I'd pay money to see Jeff Bridges and John Goodman read a telephone book as The Dude and Walter Sobchak, so it goes without saying that I'd love to see them deal with The Dude, Jr. in a potential sequel. Remember, Maude (Julianne Moore) wanted a baby, and she practically knew the Dude gave her one right after they finished having sex. Plus, seeing the return of Jesus (John Turturro, who has hinted that a sequel based on his character could be made) and the dozen other memorable characters from the film would be well worth it. Probability Factor: 5. If the Coen Bros. really, really want to please their fans, and make lots of money, they will return to the world of the tumbling tumbleweeds.

2. Star Wars - A Third Trilogy. What George Lucas says and what George Lucas does are usually two different things. He's said he'll never make another Star Wars trilogy, but everything he's doing (making a Star Wars live action TV show, countless Star Wars cartoons and releasing the films on Blu-Ray) points to a new trilogy happening at some point. And to tell the truth, Lucas can have as little involvement in a new trilogy as he wants. He wrote and directed all 3 of the latest films, and to be honest, they sucked when compared to the originals (Lucas only wrote and directed A New Hope). Lucas is a great idea guy, but should leave the details to someone else. I see Lucas doing just that if there is a new trilogy made at some point. Probability Factor: 7. Lucas can't let this franchise go and he shouldn't. It's what he's known for and the fans will always line up for more movies, and probably a couple years in advance.

1. The Godfather, Part IV. I know, I know. Part III was a mess and the Michael Corleone story was tied up into a nice bow back in 1990 when Part III was released in theaters. And when Mario Puzo died, Francis Ford Coppola swore off making another Godfather movie. (The two men were in the early stages of writing a script for a Part IV in the late 90's).

Even more difficult to get around -- any reoccurring characters featured in a potential sequel would either have to be recast due to the age of the actors playing them or lots and lots of age-reversing make-up would have to be used. But gosh darnit, I really want to go back to that world. I was 18 when I first saw these movies and they were instantly cemented into the #1 spot of my "Favorite Movies List". I also believe that there is an interesting story to be told post-Part III. When we left the Corleones, Vincent (Andy Garcia) was the Don of the family, and we all know what happened to the mob in the 80's -- it practically ceased to exist. So I'd like to see the final downfall of the Corleone family in the 80's while not treading into Goodfellas or The Sopranos territory. The Godfather movies have always had their own trademark stamp on them, and setting a sequel in the 80's would be risky. Probability Factor: 2. Unless FFC's wineries go bankrupt again, he won't return to the director's chair without Puzo and it's unlikely any new director worth their salt picks up the reigns. That said, when asked about another Godfather sequel, FFC grinned and said he'd never say "never" to anything. But this sequel remains the most unlikely of this list. And probably for good reason.

So there you have it. What sequels would you love to see get made?

No comments: