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Lynne Martin Talks Movies

THE AGE OF SEQUELS

As I once again stood in line at the box office, I couldn't help but notice the sequel posters adorning the theater's coveted wall space. Some highly anticipated by the viewing public, INDEPENDENCE DAY: RESURGENCE (2016) and MY BIG FAT GREEK WEDDING 2 (2016), others new releases appear to be more aptly categorized as projects propelled by the studio's bottom line. 


ICE AGE: COLLISION COURSE (2016) will open with little fanfare as Fox Studios trusts that parents will recognize the brand and fill the seats. The fifth installment in a franchise that has already earned over 920 million dollars, how can we really question this kind of financial success?


What I do question is the loss of originality in favor of the bottom line. I can only imagine how many new and inventive projects have been stalled in favor of a reboot being green lighted by the studio for little more than its financial guarantee. Are we, the viewing audience, so conditioned to pick the familiar that studios are only acting in response?


I believe that the age of sequels can be directly linked back to the struggling state of our economy. As paying customers, most are looking for a positive experience and don't like taking a risk at the box office. Organizing a movie night for a family of four, complete with parking and snacks, can be a noticeable hit to the wallet...not to mention that it only entertains the brood for roughly two hours. So with a credit card in hand, many customers are going with a product they trust vs. a new offering with no proven track record. Sad but true, and more than understandable in today's economy.


I thought it might be worth mentioning that out of all the projected 2017 new releases, eight of the movies had reached at least the third installment stage. I've included a short list for your amusement:


PITCH PERFECT 3, INSIDIIOUS: CHAPTER 4, BAD BOYS III, CARS 3, DESPICABLE ME 3, WOLVERINE 3, FAST 8, and of course, FRIDAY THE 13TH: CAMP BLOOD which will actually be the fourteenth installment in that particular slasher franchise.


As long as the viewing public continues to vote with an ever shrinking wallet, I think we had better get used to new releases being little more than sequels with familiar characters and reworked plotlines.

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Reviewed by Lynne Martin November 16, 2014
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