Best and Worst Movie Sequels Ever

Since the film industry began, production companies and marketing agencies have used sequels to cash in on the success of the original film. Movie-making is an art, not a science, and sometimes it’s hard to know what the public will embrace, and what will fall by the wayside.

Consequently, movies that have been embraced by the public are usually followed up with a sequel of some kind, as the studio attempts to give the public more of what they enjoyed the first time. Unfortunately, many of these sequels flop, and it’s the rare sequel that can actually stand as an equal to the first film.

Today, we’re bringing you a round-up of the best and worst movie sequels of all time, ranked from the worst in history all the way to the best of all time.

Best: The Godfather Part II

Most movie sequels that succeed manage to do so because they take what is successful from the original, and use that model on different material, to continue the story.

The Godfather Part II is one of the most successful sequels of all time, because it does exactly this. It continues the story that The Godfather started, while giving us tantalizing flashbacks of Vito Corleone’s rise to power. The second part of this story continues to flesh out the characters, which allows us to see their actions in this movie and in the first movie in a new light.


Worst: Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace

This may have been one of the first sequel trilogies to be made, and unfortunately, it came nowhere near the magic of the original.

Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace was released in 1999 and was meant to follow the action that happened 32 years before the original trilogy films which were released between 1977 and 1983. Director George Lucas was overly ambitious, and instead of using the methods that worked the first time around, he insisted on using copious CGI — which wasn’t really at the height of believable yet — and added in a bunch of ridiculous comic relief characters (cough … Jar Jar … cough), which are still joke fodder to this day.

Best: Star Wars: Episode V – The Empire Strikes Back

Another amazing second movie that succeeded in bringing the ongoing story to a whole new level is Star Wars: Episode V- The Empire Strikes Back.

While the first movie, A New Hope, was able to flesh out the story and explain the basics, The Empire Strikes Back provided much-needed nuance, and forces us — and the protagonists — to accept that victory will come with a price. It also gave us one of the most oft-quoted film lines of all time, from one of the most iconic villains ever written.

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