That’ll Do: Movie Franchises We’ve Definitely Had Enough Of
If it ain’t broke don’t fix it may be a mantra that makes perfect sense with plenty of things. But when it comes to movie franchises, don’t be so sure that’s the way to go. As summer movie season looms and we ready for months of fun at the theater, we’re also bracing ourselves for some truly horrible movie franchises rearing their ugly head.
Ok, we’ll admit that when Scary Movie first busted onto the scene, we loved the concept. It was creative, it was fresh, it was snarky and it harpooned everything we absolutely hated about predictable horror flicks. But when ya’ll start calling in the Charlie Sheens and Lindsay Lohans of the world to tackle roles, you know you have a problem. The concept has quickly lost its luster and become almost a parody of itself instead of a shot at ridiculously-themed movies. It’s time to put this bad boy out to pasture.
We love creepy horror movies as much as the next person, but Paranormal Activity should have met its maker after its third installment. Would that not have been the ideal finale? Sure each of these movies teeters on the absolutely absurd, but you have to toss some major creativity points their way. Having that much success on such a low budget, but with such a great concept, was a true blessing. They shouldn’t have gotten greedy and quit while they were ahead.
It definitely looks as if The Hangover III will be the last hurrah for Bradley Cooper, Ed Helms and Zach Galifianakis … and that’s definitely for the best. There’s no doubt that we loved the original Hangover. It was a hot mess of epic proportions and it was incredible. Tigers and Mike Tyson and unclothed men and all the antics in between; it was Wedding Crashers on steroids. But the concept of three friends having one wild night, was simply one that was not going to work as a series. Even moving the action to a whole new country (what up Bangkok!) still didn’t change the fact that The Hangover II was the same story, but slightly less entertaining. While the grand finale should be entertaining, if you love us Hangover folks, let this be the end of it.
One of the most successful, interesting and creative horror movie franchises of the last decade, Final Destination scared the you-know-what out of us. From the prospect of Death hunting its chosen ones down to the wildly gruesome (and very strange) death scenes themselves, Final Destination put every other teenage scream fest to shame. But with great success, comes the desire to destroy it in not one, not two, not three, but four sequels and possibly more on the way. And all the while the overall quality of the films has deteriorated. Man, let’s stop ho-ing this series out. Enough is enough, ya’ll.
The Fast And The Furious
Good lord we’re up to six. SIX. Yes, SIX! Now, we’re the last ones to complain when we get an extra helping of hotties like Paul Walker, Tyrese, and Vin Diesel on the screen, but when talking about franchises that have been done far too many times, we can’t ignore The Fast and The Furious. It was awesome in the beginning: Edgy, fun, incredible action. But there are only so many high-speed chases and gravely sermons from Vinny boy that we can take before it just starts getting annoying and overplayed. We’ve pretty much been assured Fast 6 is the end of the line. Here’s to hoping they’re telling us the truth.
We’d be willing to bet almost anything that Die Hard is definitely in your boo’s rotation. It seems as if any man between the ages of 21 and 39 is all over the Bruce Willis-led franchise. And while we could tolerate the first three (we see you Samuel L. Jackson), the ridiculous storylines and degeneration of John McClane have just made the others painful. The Office’s Michael Scott said it best: “Die Hard one, the original, John McClane was just this normal guy. You know, he’s just a normal New York City cop, who gets his feet cut, and gets beat up. In Die Hard four he is jumping a (car) into a helicopter. It just sort of lost what Die Hard was. It’s not Terminator.” Amen to that.
Now we’re probably horrible people for criticizing the one and only Superman, but we’d be remiss if we excluded this franchise from our Hall of Shame. While the original films are classics (Christopher Reeve was one special man), the series of awful reboots have definitely put a damper on this once terrific series. While we are clinging to some semblance of hope for the upcoming Man of Steel movie, we are bracing for yet another unimpressive try at reclaiming the Superman magic.
Tyler Perry, you have taken overdone movie franchises to a whole new plateau, my friend. Madea was never meant to be some high-minded, thought-provoking cinematic tour de force. It was meant to coax easy laughs and take viewers to church, sort of. Which it did … at first. But we can all agree that after seeing Madea go to jail, chill at a family reunion, help a family in the witness protection program and get into all manners of shenanigans over the course of five movies, enough is enough. While we strongly encourage Tyler Perry to never tackle another Alex Cross role ever again, it’s about time he let the Madea ship sail and finds another project to focus on.
Before The Walking Dead and 28 Days Later, there was Milla Jovovich and Resident Evil. Based on the popular video games series, Resident Evil may not have been exactly in the zombie genre, but it capitalized on the same heart-pounding action that has made those television shows and films so wildly successful. But as is the case with many action movies, Resident Evil was subjected to a slew of subpar follow-ups. The increasingly jumbled, nonsensical storylines and weak character development have relegated Resident Evil to the bottom of the action movie barrel and with good reason. One word: Stop. Second word: Now.
What woman doesn’t love a good ol’ romantic dance flick? From Dirty Dancing to Save the Last Dance the genre is filled with great, fluffy, feel-good movies. And Step Up was no exception. With Channing Tatum and Jenna DeWan (who would later marry after meeting on the set) the screen sizzled with their chemistry. But that magic quickly began to fizzle out as the Step Up franchise was taken to the streets, taken into 3D and a number of other unnecessary iterations. And more importantly: Channing wasn’t part of any of these sequels. The Step Up franchise was doomed on that fact alone, am I right ladies? Bring that Magic Mike fineness back and maybe we can salvage these movies after all.
Silent Hill has probably had the strangest journey of all our movie franchises. While the original was a runaway success when it was released in 2006, this was certainly not a film meant to be duplicated. Given the fact that Silent Hill’s plot was subpar to begin with, the sequel was only going to be painful to sit through. And painful it was. What made Silent Hill a winner was its incredibly artful special effects, something that hadn’t really been seen in the horror movie genre that often. But once that novelty wore off for viewers, it was game over for this series. But not surprisingly Hollywood has yet to get the message on the Silent Hill front and another is being released this year. Whomp, whomp.
Texas Chainsaw Massacre
Now this one definitely pains us to include. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre is one of the most iconic, fantastically scary horror movies of all time. So to see that story dropped into awful follow-up after awful follow-up breaks our hearts. Like virtually every other horror movie remake/sequel, Texas Chainsaw completely crashed and burned, yet Hollywood is committed to riding this movie franchise to the bitter end. Next up: Yup, you guessed it — Texas Chainsaw Massacre in 3D. And we guarantee this will be just as bad as it sounds.
X-men presents an interesting case study in our harpooning of movie franchises. The majority of these films were good. Like really good. They were entertaining, they attracted all-star casts and they contained surprisingly interesting plots. But like all good movie franchises, this one has had some downs as well, largely when its come to its pseudo spinoffs. While unlike the other flicks on our list, we’re not necessarily X-men should come to an end, but we are saying choose your spots wisely. We heart you Halle Berry, but the last thing we need is an entire backstory on Storm.
Pirates of the Caribbean
There are few Johnny Depp projects that we would ever complain about, but Pirates of the Caribbean is certainly one of them. The first installment was terrific — fun, exciting, with a charismatic protagonist and wonderful supporting cast. The 2006 follow-up was slightly less entertaining, but we could still sit through it. But as numbers three and four came down the pipe it became very clear that Pirates was going down in flames. You can add all the high seas hotties you want, but that was not enough to save this dying franchise. And in case you were wondering, yes there’s another one coming in summer 2015. For Shame.