Leave it to Hollywood to take something good and milk it for all it’s worth. There truly are some unforgivable sequels of successful movies that put their great franchises to shame. I mean, nobody asked for another Mean Girls film. And why, oh, why did they think a Mask follow-up was needed? We don’t even want to get started on the second Titanic film!
These are just a few of the worst movie sequels out there. So bad, to the point where they’re offensive, and plain old embarrassing, you wish they didn’t exist. So, just for laughs, let’s go down (embarrassing) memory lane and relive a bunch of really bad movie sequels that should never have happened…
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1. The Hangover Part III (2013)
Rotten Tomatoes: 20%
Here’s the thing with The Hangover franchise, every new movie feels like a funny joke your dad thought you’d forgotten and really wants you to hear again. With the same formula churned out over and over again, The Hangover saga reaches comedy limbo with its third movie.
The characters seem to be in some type of purgatory, where the same things keep happening to them (and to us) as punishment and Zach Galifianakis’ character, Alan, just loses that hilarious charm he had in the previous films.
2. Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension (2015)
Rotten Tomatoes: 14%
Trust us, it was difficult not to list most of the Paranormal Activity sequels in a category of their own, but this one might just be the worst. While the original brought something new to the horror movie genre with the format of fake real footage exposing paranormal events, The Ghost Dimension is all cheap, repetitive jump scares, and second-hand acting.
Once again, we’re dealing with a suburban middle-class family whose – surprise surprise – camera captures ghosts. The level of predictability has never been higher. There is such a thing as the ‘hamster wheel’ effect for movie sequels and the Paranormal Activity hamster has been rolling for way too long.
3. Teen Wolf Too (1987)
Rotten Tomatoes: 7%
The original wasn’t exactly a masterpiece, but it was a decent comedy, and anything where Michael J Fox appears in is worth giving a standing ovation, anyway. He could be playing Daffy Duck for all we care! It’s not to say that Jason Bateman doesn’t do his best in this sequel as a young man whose werewolf curse comes in handy in a boxing tournament, but the plot and the jokes fall flat and feel very déjà-vu.
And of course, replacing the star of a movie in its sequel is an extremely risky bet to begin with, one that Teen Wolf Too unfortunately didn’t win.
4. Son Of The Mask (2005)
Rotten Tomatoes: 6%
If the original movie was entertaining and deliciously cartoonesque, this one feels like a caricature of it. And as much as Jaime Kennedy does his best to walk in the steps of Jim Carrey in the title role, the plot feels lazy and the special effects are overdone. Add that to the extremely high expectations set by the first opus, and by Jim Carrey’s pristine performance, it’s difficult to imagine anything other than a cringey flop.
The plot of Son of the Mask features the mask from the first movie, but besides that, they hardly have anything in common. Somehow, a baby gets born with the powers of the mask, so we get treated to some truly painful CGI baby transformation/dance sequences. Most of the so-called “jokes” in this movie are so painful, film critic, Richard Roeper wanted to walk out halfway through.
5. Mean Girls 2 (2011)
Rotten Tomatoes: 31%
When Tina Fey refused to write a sequel to her hilarious, yet poignant coming-of-age comedy, Mean Girls (2004), Paramount went ahead and had it made anyway – as a half-cocked TV movie. Its own creators were so embarrassed of the film, they didn’t even bother with a theatrical release.
Mean Girls 2 takes the overall tropes of the first film and throws them in a saucepan and stirs, hoping it will deliver a masterpiece. Featuring the same high school drama minus the laughs, not to mention the entire original cast except for the Principal, played by Tim Meadows. The movie is virtually unknown compared to its predecessor, with only two critic reviews on Rotten Tomatoes and an overall audience rating of 31%.
6. The Rage: Carrie 2 (1999)
Rotten Tomatoes: 20%
They were right to call this ‘The Rage’ because this is probably how fans of the original movie, and fans of the book, felt upon watching it. If there was ever a prize for the most useless sequel, this one would win them all.
Taking ingredients from Stephen King’s story without having any charisma for itself, Carrie 2 tries way too hard to reproduce the original, but fails to even be a good story in its own right. In essence, we think there shouldn’t even have been a sequel, but… Hollywood’s gotta Hollywood.
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7. The Hunchback of Notre Dame 2: The Secret of the Bell (2002)
Rotten Tomatoes: 30%
Another subcategory of the sequel curse is the “straight-to-DVD/VHS’ one. Disney had a lot of these before its recent computer animated renaissance, and a lot of them were follow-ups to actual classics. Some are actually good, like The Lion King II or The Return of Jafar, and then some are…The Hunchback of Notre Dame 2.
The quality of the animation in this one fell down the drain. The mundane plot and lackluster villain feels like ‘episode of the week’ material, and the songs are far from being memorable. Also, there’s a huge bell with diamonds in it. Diamonds. Disney, do you know how bells work?
8. Jaws 2 (1978)
Rotten Tomatoes: 60%
The first one was thrilling, tense and everything you would hope for in a horror film centering on a bloodthirsty shark that has its fun slaughtering beachgoers. This second opus, however, feels like someone went and shot the exact same film under different angles.
Even with a plot that is essentially a copy, which means it could have been at least as entertaining, the tonal quality of the first movie disappears, the characters get on your nerves, and the shark is so predictable, it’s not even scary anymore. At one point, you find yourself wishing it would just eat everyone already…
9. Grease 2 (1982)
Rotten Tomatoes: 38%
One of the worst sequels to a great movie. Seriously, how dare they? And Michelle Pfeiffer, what were you thinking?! In this fun-to-make-fun-of sequel to the highest-grossing movie musical ever made, The Pink Ladies and the T-birds live on at Rydell High two years after the original characters graduated.
The plot is a love story similar to the first film, but this time, it’s the guy that has to “shape up” if he wants to date a Pink Lady. The songs are bland and forgettable, and there’s virtually no choreography for some of them. The movie has a pathetic 38% critic rating on Rotten Tomatoes. It’s definitely not the one that anyone wanted…
10. Titanic 2 (2010)
Rotten Tomatoes: 15%
One of the tell-tale signs of a terrible sequel (other than its awful IMDb rating) is the number of years between it and the original. Titanic 2 was made in 2010, a solid 13 years after Titanic. While not truly a sequel to the classic romance movie, Titanic II heavily riffs the original with its plot.
Produced by The Asylum, the studio that gives us such classics as Sharknado and Mega Shark vs. Giant Octopus, this flop is about a new ship, christened (you guessed it) “Titanic II”, that similarly hits an iceberg, this time by a tsunami. It’s so completely over the top and different from the original, it’s in an entirely different genre, becoming a cheesy adventure and action flick instead of an award-winning drama.
11. Return to Oz (1985)
Rotten Tomatoes: 52%
The Wizard of Oz is an all-time classic. Why did anybody think it would be okay to make a follow-up film?! Its sequel, Return to Oz wasn’t just a nonsensical, non-magical, and disaster of a movie, it was also downright petrifying.
While the original was a wonderful musical for children, Return to Oz was a horrific nightmare. From that electroshock therapy scene (on a child!!) to those dreadful wheelers, no child should have to sit through this awful movie. Despite its reasonable rating on IMDb and Rotten Tomatoes, this is definitely one of the worst sequels ever made.
12. Scary Movie 5 (2013)
Rotten Tomatoes: 4%
The first was epic, the second was brilliant, the third and fourth were somewhat great, but the fifth…oh the fifth Scary Movie was BAD. With a shockingly terrible Rotten Tomatoes score of just 4%, this chapter in the horror parody saga was a complete and utter waste of time. In fact, we forgot it even happened until writing up this list.
Spoofing the likes of Inception and Paranormal Activity, Scary Movie 5 lacked a lot of the funny ingredients that its predecessors had. And anyway, there’s no Scary Movie without Brenda and Cindy. Am I right?
Hey Hollywood – nobody, we repeat, NOBODY was crying out for these movie sequels! There really was no need.
Let us know what your worst movie sequels of all time are in the comments below…