So the Wachowskis are back again with another sequel to The Matrix, because apparently the late Nineties just can’t be allowed to die. It doesn’t matter that The Matrix has had two sequels, several games and an animated spin-off and pretty much every one of those things sucked, it’s still getting another try at recapturing the acclaim of the original. At this point, we have to wonder whether Hollywood just can’t help themselves.
Since there’s hardly a person on the planet that hasn’t been fundamentally harmed by the sheer weight of their disappointment in the Matrix sequels, we’ve decided to give the Hollywood machine a bit of help today. Here are five films that deserve a sequel way more than The Matrix ever will. Let’s start with:
5. Masters of the Universe
Okay, there’s a Netflix revival of this franchise happening but that doesn’t actually stop us getting a second big screen outing for He-Man and friends. Back in the Eighties, Cannon films crapped out one of the biggest flops of the decade in the form of the Dolph Lundgren-helmed Masters of the Universe. It moved the action from Eternia to Earth, it featured a He-Man that never became Prince Adam, and it left out 90% of the original toy line in favour of crap new characters nobody wanted.
A sequel could fix all that. Picture this: Skeletor clambers out of the pink ooze he finds himself floating in during the post-credits sequel hook in the original film, only to discover that everyone thinks he’s dead. Now he has a chance to re-take Castle Greyskull in secret, rebuilding his forces at Snake Mountain while the Eternians all celebrate their victory after the battle at the end of the first film.
We’ll get to see a sequel that takes place on Eternia, with Skeletor recruiting villain characters we actually recognise from the toys and cartoon. Meanwhile, He-Man will have to bring in his own companions to battle Skeletor’s forces in the climactic battle; so we get to see characters we actually recognise.
It’s a win-win situation; especially if they cast The Rock as He-Man because come on guys, he’s perfect for it. Also, get rid of Gwildor and give us Orko back. After enduring that first film, we deserve that much at least.
2012’s Dredd is a near-perfect screen adaptation of the greatest British comic character since Desperate Dan (because nobody can ever top the adventures of that strongman cowboy. Don’t @ me).
Written by Alex Garland and based heavily on the works of Dredd co-creator John Wagner, Dredd is an ultra-violent, tense and action-packed film with a streamlined plot and a starring actor who knew he had to keep Dredd’s helmet on while playing the part. It blew the Stallone film to pieces within seconds of starting and it’s so good I want to marry it and have its sequels.
We already saw several sequels to this amazing film in the pages of the Judge Dredd Megazine (so named because every idea can’t be white-hot amazingness) and they were rather good but come on, we need Joe Dredd and Co to return to the silver screen for a proper big-budget sequel.
With the introduction of Judge Anderson in the first film, it’s only right that we get to see Dredd and Anderson’s eternal nemesis in the sequel. We therefore need to see an adaptation of the original Judge Death story, possibly also tying-in its sequel, Judge Death Lives so we can see two things: the other Dark Judges (Judge Death’s buddies who help him murder everyone they meet) and, above all else, we need to see the film incarnation of the greatest image ever set to comic form:
I would buy a ticket to see that moment alone.
3. District 9
Now I don’t want to shock you but while I was doing research for this article, I discovered that enough people have asked “Is District 9 based on a true story?” that it warrants a section on Google that pops up when you search for the film. This is enough proof that we have strayed too far from the true path and can now, as a people, never enter the Kingdom of Heaven.
In lieu of forever being denied eternal peace in the afterlife, we have some questions that need answering when it comes to District 9. First of all: what happened to the aliens after the film ended? We need to know because that mess they were all in wasn’t properly resolved and we absolutely need to see the inevitable breakdown of that uneasy peace.
Secondly, did Wikus ever actually regain his humanity? Thirdly, did Christopher come back to Earth? If he did, did he rain righteous fire down on the humans who absolutely deserved to get pimp slapped off the face of the planet for how they treated the aliens? All this and more needs to be resolved. Give us a sequel.
We’ll be so grateful we’ll even forgive you if you commit the sin of naming it District 10 like we all know you want to. Because they totally would do that. You know Hollywood has no self control when it comes to this kind of thing.
2. Galaxy Quest
At the end of Galaxy Quest, the crew save the universe and are rewarded with a renewal of their old TV franchise because apparently that’s enough of a reward when you’re an out of work actor who’s been typecast for most of their career. Now I’m not one to judge but I think I’d probably have held out for a medal at the very least.
So we have a situation where the actors are back on TV and, presumably, a new generation of nerds have been indoctrinated into this cult sci-fi show of theirs. Given that the aliens in the film all believe the original TV show is made up of mission logs from a real ship, how do they react to the sudden appearance of new episodes? Does the new show contradict the lore of the original, giving rise to factions amongst the aliens; some of whom are purists who believe only in the original “historical documents” while others have adapted their headcanon to factor in the new stories?
What about when more of Sarris’ people show up? Are they all as warlike as he was? Will the Thermians be able to cope with more of those guys? Did the Thermians ever manage to restore their population, or are they still just all flying around on a single space ship that, quite frankly, was not in the best of shape at the end of the original film?
There are so many unanswered questions in this amazing film. I’ll no doubt find more when I re-watch it tonight because of course I’m going to have to re-watch it now I’ve spent so many paragraphs talking about it. It’s practically the law.
Also, did anyone else notice that the third series of Star Trek: Enterprise is basically Archer and the crew doing a tour of Galaxy Quest? Those Xindi certainly looked familiar to me…
1. Mystery Men
It’s the age of the super hero movie franchise and Marvel is basically propping up the entire cinema industry at this point so it’s only right that the weird spin-off/adaptation of Flaming Carrot comics (yes, that’s a real thing) gets its much deserved sequel.
The original Mystery Men film acts as an origin story for the titular superhero team and it also establishes the villain-filled world in which they work. The film may dispatch a super villain and also establish that his contemporaries were already dealt with thanks to the actions of Captain Amazing (who is the stand-in for the original comic’s hero, The Flaming Carrot because apparently he was “too weird” to be put to film) but that doesn’t mean other villains can’t rise to fill the obvious power vacuum.
Also, let’s actually bring in The Flaming Carrot this time. If we can have oddballs like Howard The Duck and Groot get lots of love on the cinema screen, surely we’ve earned a chance to let a guy with a carrot for a head have a chance at stardom?
Let’s face it, we would all watch the trailer at the very least and I can’t be the only one to admit I’d be there on opening night just to see how everyone reacts to him. Can CGI pull off a realistic carrot head? There’s only one way to find out!
Zoë Kirk-Robinson is a cartoonist and comedian who writes every day because she thinks it keeps her sane. Her latest book, All Over the House: Book Three, is out now.