Eye Box

Keeping a critical eye on the world of TV and film

Fast and the Furious 5 touted: Movie franchises that won’t go away

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This week, pseudo action-hero Paul Walker told a radio show that Fast and the Furious 5 is on the cards, and that both he and Vin Diesel would be reprising their roles. Considering that the first film was a masterclass in poor quality, over-budgeted, hi-concept dross and that the rest of the series has gotten progressively worse, the money-spinning success of the franchise can be the only possible reason it lives on.

Here, Eye Box casts its mind over other movie franchises which just won’t go away and considers how we can get rid of them…

The idea of a franchise film is the epitome of the goldmine and was, and still is, quintessentially Hollywood. It could not have been invented anywhere else. Of course, there have always been sequels and multiple series which had a single protagonist (think Film Noir) and these were, first and foremost, created for the financial rewards they reaped. But the franchise is different: It is purely driven by financial performance and quality is an afterthought. The first franchises can be traced back to the late seventies – the Star Wars series was certainly an epochal moment [Eds note please correct me of you feel I’m out on dates] – but it was the eighties, with the Back To The FutureAlien and monumental Terminator series that lead the way. These series, however, were skillful pieces of filmmaking which deserved their box office success.

Unfortunately, the legacy of these series has turned ugly. Certain franchises are so bad to place your eyes on, you can’t tell if you’ve just stared at an eclipse. All you know is your eyes hurt a lot and you feel sick. Academics have tried to explain it, but the truth is, it’s a mystery: It’s just horrible. Some of the best of the worst follow…

Pirates of the Caribbean: This series was steered well initially and stayed on course until the third hit the whirlpool and you knew it was time to stop. Except they haven’t. Pirates of the Caribbean 4 is due out in 2012, avec Johnny Depp in eye make-up et al. Sh*t’s ahoy!

Scream: Another franchise which just doesn’t know how to die. Again, the first film was great; a genuine return to good old slasher-gore fun. Unfortunately, the third was terrible and <<SHOCK HORROR>>, a fourth has been announced. Who’s the killer going to be this time? I don’t care. Me on myself if I see it, probably.

Hostel: Simply, I hated the first, despised the second and encourage those who are excited by the prospect a third to finish the trilogy to seek help. By help, of course, I mean better taste. Due out in 2010.

Jumper: Lets weigh up the evidence. Hayden Christensen. Bad sci-fi dialogue. It’s the Star Wars prequel trilogy. No, wrong. This is even worse, it’s the Jumper duology. Avoid the 2011-scheduled second part at all costs.

But for every absolutely terrible duology, trilogy, quadology ad infinitum, there’s always at least one sequel to look forward to. Comedy fans stand to attention, the man, the legend, the hero…RON BURGUNDY is coming back for more seventies news-themed brilliance in Anchorman 2. And Ben Affleck said State of Play would be the last movie set in a newsroom. No one ever said Affleck was a smart man.


One Response

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  1. hi’m souri


    December 7, 2009 at 9:09 pm

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