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4 Of The Greatest Movie Sequels Ever Made

To most movie fans film sequels inspire dread as tiresome, watered-down versions of the originals. Not always: Empire Strikes Back, Aliens and Terminator 2 buck the trend.

To most movie fans, the idea of a sequel to a film they enjoyed is one to dread. This is usually the case, as the traditional sequel that has been fashioned by the big-bucks paradigm of Hollywood is a tiresome watered-down, and sometimes even a parody shell of the former movie(s). Here are the greatest movie sequels ever made to start with. 

Greatest Movie Sequels Ever Made

The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers
  • Amazon Prime Video (Video on Demand)
  • Elijah Wood, Ian McKellen, Liv Tyler (Actors)

Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002)

Many fans of J.R.R. Tolkien’s LOTR books were a bit squeamish when New Line Cinema announced that they were going to produce this classic tale. But when the first movie came out, many fans' attitudes changed from anticipation to joy, and their attitudes changed once more when this sequel came out the next year.

Picking up right where the last movie left off, we have our two bands of adventurers trying to save Middle Earth by a) destroying the Ring of Power (Elijah Woods and Sean Astin) and b) protecting one of the land's oldest kingdoms from falling (Viggo Mortensen and his band).

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The director, Peter Jackson, kept very true to the heart of the book while introducing Middle Earth (or New Zealand as we might call it) to audiences and pushing the limits of special effects in the right direction.

And the audience is introduced to the very memorable character of Smeagol/Gollum (“performed” and voiced by Andy Serkis). His performance alone was worth the price of a ticket, and why he didn’t at the very least get nominated for an academy award, we’ll never know.

Superman II
  • Amazon Prime Video (Video on Demand)
  • Gene Hackman, Christopher Reeve, Jackie Cooper (Actors)

Superman II (1980)

It’s a testament to just how well Christopher Reeves portrayed the Man of Steel that whenever a new Superman movie is being made, everyone compares the new actor to Reeves.

Reeves had it all: He was built just enough to pass as Superman yet not bulked up enough to give the alter ego Clark Kent too much muscle, he was extremely likable enough as both characters, he was confident as Superman yet believably clumsy as Kent, and the first two Superman movies proved that you can make a successful superhero movie.

In this one, we have the Man of Steel fighting his feelings for Lois Lane as well as a trio of villains from his home planet of Krypton (who were imprisoned in the phantom zone just prior to the planet being destroyed and released thanks to a nuclear detonation in space).

Add in the brightly cunning, thinking-five-steps-ahead-of-everybody-else Lex Luthor (played once more by Gene Hackman) and we have a superhero movie that not only surpassed its original movie but laid the groundwork for future hero movies to come.

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Plus, we get to see Superman duke it out with villains of his own strength, something missing in many Superman films, past and present.

For a Few Dollars More
  • Amazon Prime Video (Video on Demand)
  • Clint Eastwood, Lee Van Cleef, Gian Maria Volontè (Actors)

For a Few Dollars More (1965)

This is the second part of the famous Spaghetti Westerns starring Clint Eastwood as the Man With No Name. In this installment, we have our anti-hero playing a bounty hunter on the hunt for the famous killer El Indio (played mechanically crazy by Gian Maria Volonte) and his gang. They all have a huge reward for their capture.

He teams up with Colonel Douglas Mortimer (Lee Van Cleef) and together, the two bounty hunters try to stay one step ahead of the other, all the while also trying to stay alive.

Volonte’s character also uses a pocket watch chime to ‘countdown’ when his gunfights begin (“Once the chimes finish, begin…”) which adds to the suspense before the fights (and explains why the Colonel is hunting down El Indio at the end of the movie).

This film, including the showdown between Indio and Mortimer (which is nowhere near as great as the final showdown in The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly but still very enjoyable) proves that great westerns don’t have to be made in the United States and that Clint Eastwood and Lee Van Cleef should’ve made dozens of more films together.

The Bourne Supremacy
  • Amazon Prime Video (Video on Demand)
  • Matt Damon, Franka Potente, Brian Cox (Actors)

The Bourne Supremacy (2004)

The first Bourne movie had a hint of humor sprinkled here and there to lighten the mood. This movie took that humor out and replaced it with edge-of-your-seat car chases, fight scenes that make James Bond envious, and an unexpected ending that really was the perfect way to end the movie, even though you never would have expected it to do so.

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Matt Damon is back as the amnesiac assassin from the first movie who now has to not only clear his name, but also find the moron who killed his girlfriend.

The audience is taken on a whirlwind journey from India, to Italy and Germany, and even Russia and New York. Not only do we get to see an exciting and thrilling sequel that in many ways outdoes the original, but we also get to do the touristy, sightseeing stuff without having to go through airport security. Oh, and Bourne’s body count drastically rises in this film as well…

Once again, these movies are in no particular order, and for now, this is the end. As well all know, Hollywood and other movie studios are producing new sequels almost yearly, and who knows, maybe Hangover 2 or Kung Fu Panda 2 will make this and others list as well. Only time will tell…

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