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The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

Three sequels that need to get pulled out of Cinematic Hell

    There are some sequels out there that are undeniably, unforgivably bad. They’re painful to watch, and even more painful when you realize that someone, somewhere thought they were a good idea.

    But then there are movies that get unfairly lumped in this category, that really aren’t as bad as they’re imagined to be. For whatever reason, they get pegged as “bad movies” and then spend the rest of their lives in Cinematic Hell, never to be seen from again.

    Well, not if I have anything to say about it.

    Like Dante, I’m dipping into the inferno, and coming back with three films you should reconsider putting back in rotation. Not all sequels have to be bad, and unfairly judging these three as such makes you just as bad as the people who thought “Blues Brothers 2000” was a good idea.

    Photo via Universal Pictures.

    Back to the Future Part II

    I know what some of you are (hopefully) saying: “‘Back to the Future Part II?!’ That’s not a bad movie sequel at all!”

    And I agree with you, hallucinated readers. But while anyone who’s anyone knows “Part III” is the real tragedy of the “Back to the Future” franchise, in the last few years I’ve met a surprising number of people who actually think “Part II” is the worst of the three, and even some depraved souls who think the Western-waste-of-film “Part III” is the best.

    I know. I couldn’t believe it either.

    If anything, “Part II” has to stand out as the superior member of the trilogy. It takes all the best parts of the first movie and does it again, from a new, equally time-warping angle, adds in scenes from the actual future, and has hoverboards. How can you hate a movie with hoverboards?

    Yeah, the alternate future part is kind of strange, but is it any worse than Marty McFly retroactively inventing Chuck Berry or the entire plotline of “How the West Became the Setting of a Horrible Sci-Fi Movie?” I think not.

    Photo via Warner Bros.

    Ocean’s Twelve

    A lot of people I know have a problem with “Ocean’s Twelve” because it’s not “Ocean’s Eleven.” This is what I like to call a “duh moment.”

    Obviously the sequel to “Ocean’s Eleven” couldn’t surpass the original, which in turn was probably only a dim reflection of the original original, made by the illustrious Rat Pack in 1960. So they just didn’t try.

    Instead, what you get with “Ocean’s Twelve” is not a casino heist. It’s a tongue-in-cheek response to casino heist movies, and it fulfills that role brilliantly.

    Star-studded cast? Add a few extra stars. Steal $160 million? Steal a priceless Fabergé egg. Craft an elaborate plot doomed to fail? Craft an even more elaborate plot designed to fail, tricking both Ocean’s adversaries and his audience.

    And in the midst of all that, you get movie stars acting like movie stars (sometimes literally), putting on a show just for the hell of it.

    Honestly, I have more of a problem with “Ocean’s Eleven” because it’s not “Ocean’s Twelve.”

    Photo via Lucasfilm.

    Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith

    If you didn’t burn me at the stake for my column this week, this one’ll probably have me breathing out of an ominous exoskeleton within a day or two.

    But hear me out. Episodes I and II were bad. Really bad. Really really bad.

    Episode III is not, no matter how much we want it to be. Not only does it somehow manage to salvage the plotline the first two prequels saddle the franchise with, it somehow manages to actually make you care about what happens to Anakin in the process of his moral decline, something I never would have believed after watching “Attack of the Clones.”

    And while you know exactly what the film is leading up to — something that certainly can’t be said for the other two prequels — if anything this only makes the movie more effective. Now that Lucas has his goal in sight, the movie gains purpose and direction, with each puzzle piece falling into place.

    Hayden Christensen is still a lousy actor. But much like Anakin himself, Lucas “brings balance to the Force” with this installment, compensating for the prequels’ worst errors with a decent plot, cool battle scenes and an overall sense of catharsis that almost absolves him for making the new trilogy to begin with.

    Not quite. But almost.

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