Tuesday, January 25, 2011

When Is Enough Really Enough?

Sequels can be excellent. They can be good, but not as good as the original.  Some are downright awful.  But how many sequels does a movie need before it’s time to call it quits?

One of my all-time favorite movies comes in a set of three: the Back to the Future trilogy.  The first two movies are set up specifically for a sequel.  The whole story takes place through three movies, as opposed to three different stories happening throughout three movies.   Back to the Future can usually be found in a set of all three movies.  The Santa Clause movies come in a set of three. Spider-man.  Mission Impossible. The Lord of the Rings.  All excellent trilogies and none of them exceed three movies. At least, not yet. 

Some movies today have gone too far. The Saw series is now up to a total of seven, count ‘em, seven movies.  It’s actually rather disturbing: how many ways to gruesomely kill someone can a group of writers come up with? However, it’s not just Saw; the horror genre is famous for spitting out an incredible amount of sequels.

So, how many sequels are “acceptable?”  As stated before, trilogies are quite common.  Is four movies too many?  Disney will soon release a fourth Pirates of the Caribbean movie, "On Stranger’s Tide," and it will undoubtedly be a hit; just the fact that it’s another installment will keep the crowds coming- people want to know what happens next.  There is no guarantee that it will do as well as the last three, but it has a fighting chance. 

It's hard to tell when a series has reached it's limit.  As long as it keeps the crowds coming, it only makes sense to spit out more movies. 

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