Sequels

Quantity over Originality

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Victoria Salvatore

In a recent interview with Entertainment Weekly, director Ridley Scott alluded to the fact that he was working on making a sequel to “Gladiator”. 

The Last few years have seen a spike in sequels. Movies like “The Strangers: Prey at Night”, “Incredibles 2” and newest “Halloween” are all sequels that were released in the past year.

The interesting thing about those sequels is that all of them were made a over a decade after the first movie. “The Strangers” came out 10 years ago, “Incredibles” was released 14 years ago and the first “Halloween” was in theaters a whopping 40 years ago. 

If a sequel to “Gladiator” were created there would be an 18 or more year gap between the two movies. One of my personal criteria for whether a sequel is good or not is how long it’s been since the first movie was created.

The more time that elapses between the two movies the more unnecessary the sequel becomes. Sequels that are made 10 plus years after the first seem to be made simply to make money or because Hollywood has run out of original ideas. 

Movies like “The Purge” are examples of movies with new ideas that work but the sequels didn’t quite work. It was original and had good jump scares, but the multiple sequels were very disappointing and unnecessary.

It felt as if the producers had been greedy and decided to pump out as many “Purge” movies as possible, not caring whether they were actually good. 

“Sometimes I feel like sequels can get lazy, but if done correctly then they are really good,” film major Monica Krajewski said. “It definitely depends on the movie, sorry to the Pitch Perfect fans. But come on.”

Many sequels don’t take the time to develop characters or much of a plot. Instead, they rely on the fact that you already know the basis of the first movie which results in a half thought out film.

As unnecessary as some sequels are not all of them are bad. In fact, some of my favorite movies, such as “Rocky Balboa” and “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade” are from very successful franchises. 

A franchise is successful when every movies adds something of value to the continuous story while remaining original. Take the Marvel movies for example, all of the movies are tied together, but they’re also good as stand-alone movies. 

Overall, I wish that the box office would have more original offerings than the various sequels, prequels, and remakes that have littered theaters recently. 

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