It’s a challenging task for the director to come out with a satisfactory sequel, let alone a threequel. But there have been outliers such as Indiana Jones & The Last Crusade, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King or Toy Story 3 that have even exceeded the box-office numbers of the first one. Here’s a list of threequels that were rejected by the audience:
The Matrix Revolution
The Matrix earned Keanu Reeves his first Oscar award for his outstanding performance as Neo. By the time franchise reached the third movie (just a few months after reloaded), it became a perplexing quagmire which no one gave a damn about. The Zion battle was bloated and we couldn’t care less.
X-Men: The Last Stand
The first two X-Men movies totally nailed it and gave birth to an action superhero franchise which had enormous possibilities. But then came the third one which destroyed everything and messed up the timeline. Well, that’s what happens if you let go Bryan Singer in the third one.
The original 1979 Ridley Scott’s film and a follow up by James Cameron in 1986 were exceptional sci-fi thrillers. But the third movie was sloppy, to say the least. There was constant meddling of Fox studios in the day to day affairs of the movie, and David Fincher found it impossible to bring his vision to the screen.
The first two Shrek movies created a sensation in the world of animation, while Shrek 3 seemed forced and tried to sell the same thing for the third time. But alas puns didn’t land and movie failed at the box office.
Terminator 1 marked the birth of a major sci-fi franchise which is set to shatter box-office records. Terminator 2 topped the first movie and catapulted Arnold Schwarzenegger to global fame. But the third movie failed to give a fitting ending to an awesome trilogy.
All the hard work of Sam Raimi in the first two movies turned to dust in the third one. He has even confessed that he never wanted Venom but studio forced him to include this insane villain in part 3 without really setting him up.
Wes Craven redefined the horror genre with Scream in 1996, followed it up with an awesome Scream 2 which treated the audience like intelligent people instead of gore hound. Scream 3 was a major disappointment replete with jump cuts and cliches that are dull and boring.
Return of the Jedi
George Lucas original Star Wars (1977) and a follow-up Empire Strikes Back (1980) will always be the movies reminding us our childhood, but Return of the Jedi was not as gripping as previous films, even annoying in parts.
The Dark Knight Rises
Christopher Nolan’s direction in first two Batman movies inspired us, while Dark Knight Rises made us question his craft. Although loved by many, it’s nothing in comparison to the first two movies of the trilogy- Batman Begins and the Dark Knight. It is a good film but the one plagued with plot holes and lack of cohesion.
Godfather and Godfather 2 are the greatest gangster movies ever made, but the third one seemed tacky and lacked emotional core. The stakes were not high enough and dialogues were stale that were once edgy.
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