Hollywood thrives on sequels, remakes and reboots. There’s no sign of stopping them now or in the future. Although there are times these sequels fall short of glory, we do get some great ones every now and then.
The Dark Knight (2008)
“Batman Begins” establishes the dark tone that defined Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy but its sequel perfects the recipe. Add in a legendary performance by Heath Ledger and you have the makings of one of the best comic books films of all time. “The Dark Knight” even transcends the superhero drama and is considered a magnificent crime thriller in its own light. The action sequences are mostly created with practical effects, making for a sense of realism.
Spider-Man 2 (2004)
This superhero film isn’t burdened by the need to tell an original story, thus allowing it the opportunity to delve further into the characters we met in the first film. What’s more, we’re introduced to Doctor Octopus, a wonderfully insane evil genius who’s brought to life by a fantastic Alfred Molina performance and Oscar winning special effects. With a more sinister and captivating villain, better cinematography and more compelling action sequences overall, it’s clear that this sequel greatly improved upon the original.
Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back (1980)
Even though “A New Hope” received higher praise upon initial release, the second film in the original trilogy has come to be accepted as the best one of the series over time. Its aesthetics, complex characters and iconic dialogues set the standard for an entire generation of filmmakers and the story was more intriguing than any other movies at that time. It’s one of the highest grossing films ever and gives a memorable picture for many reasons including the unforgettable twist in its final act.
Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014)
So many Marvel films sacrificed intimate actions for more scenes of mass destruction. But that is not the case in Captain’s second solo film. Unlike the first film, there’s a greater emphasis on a tight hand-to-hand combat that feels like a much better fit for the leader of Avengers. There’s also far more personal conflicts than in other Marvel movies as the Captain faces off against his best friend, Bucky Barnes.
Mad Max: Fury Road (2015)
Director George Miller got Hollywood’s attention in the late 1970s with his low-budgeted thrill ride “Mad Max”, and then raised the bar even higher with a road warrior a few years later. And he came back with “Mad Max: Fury Road” that blew past our collective expectations. Using just the right combination of CGI and live action stunts, Miller and his team gave us a good action, adventure and post-apocalyptic mayhem.
Thor: Ragnarok (2017)
The first Thor movie, released in 2011, was a decent but not particularly enthralling superhero film. Even the second one wasn’t that well received. Then enter Taika Waititi, an indie director with a quirky voice and a determination to showcase Chris Hemsworth’s comedy chops, Funnier than the previous Thor films, Ragnarok proves that it isn’t special effects that make the Marvel Universe hit – it’s a good sense of humour and a little muscle.
Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (2014)
Director Matt Reeves made an excellent movie that manages to stand on its own while expanding on its existing universe. Dawn of the Planet of the Apes is the most emotionally gripping, and arguably most philosophical, of the many Apes movies – including the 1968 original. The film builds a believable settlement for the apes.
Mission Impossible: Fallout (2018)
Fast paced and exciting, “Fallout” offers one death defying stunt after another – including Tom’s stunt of jumping out airplanes and handling a helicopter through and between snowy mountain peaks. Any one of these stunts could have easily killed the action star and one of them almost crippled him.
How to Train Your Dragon 2 (2014)
Debuting four years after the original, this sequel proved more beautiful and more emotionally resonant. While the battle sequences are bigger, the movie thrives when it dares to pause for quieter moments, like the romance between Valka and Stoick.
Toy Story 3 (2010)
“Toy Story” and “Toy Story 2” were great thoughtful movies about growing up. Fifteen years after the original film debuted, the movie grapples with aging and loss. It also manages to convince its audience that a Disney’s kids’ franchise might actually kill off beloved characters.
Source: YouTube, Time
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