What makes a trilogy?
Well the number three plays a large part. The definition of a trilogy is three things that connect to one another.
A movie trilogy has the original movie and then two sequels following it. There are many trilogy sets of three movies from the past and present today, and if your a horror movie fan, then you’ll know that there could be up to three trilogies within a horror movie series. For example, the Friday the 13th movies have numerous sequels, and they can all be grouped together to form their own trilogies.
There are only a few great trilogies that have been made, which made it easy to choose the best one. It was, however, very difficult choosing the worst movie trilogy because there are many bad movies that have been made.
Anyway, let’s begin with the best…
The Best Movie Trilogy
For me it came down to two, one was rather recent and the other decades old. Both are considered to be geek favorites in society but they are so much more than that. The two series that I’m referring to are The Lord of the Rings trilogy directed by Peter Jackson and the original Star Wars Trilogy that was written and directed by George Lucas.
It was close but ultimately in terms of how it changed the world and entertainment, it had to be the Star Wars trilogy. The Lord of the Rings trilogy may have out grossed the original Star Wars but it didn’t have the public impact that Star Wars had.
Everybody knows Star Wars because it’s been referenced to so many times by practically everybody ranging from the president to a television show. The first movie which is technically the fourth in the series was made about 33 years ago, but it still has a major impact today. The original was the standard in film making and special effects. It produced numerous copy cats and parodies
Forget about the recent mess of a trilogy, the original was by far the greatest made. Lord of the Rings like Star Wars may not have a lot of appeal to many people and I know for a fact that others will disagree with my choice, but you can’t deny how much of an impact it has had on our society.
The Reason trilogies become successful is due to the impact they can have on a generation. Trilogies such as Back to the Future or The Matrix are both respectfully decent movies in their own right but we generally shove them off. Why? Because to be a great trilogy, every movie has to be amazing, a standout.
If a movie in a trilogy is not able to carry an audience by itself than the three set is a failure. The thing about Star Wars is that each of the movies are strong enough to generate public interest. The original Matrix was fantastic and got rave reviews, the other two lost some of their spunk.
Sequels to an original rarely get great reviews or they suffer backlash and are often said to not be as good as the original. Only few sequels have been critically acclaimed and generally regarded to be just as good if not better than the original. Movies such as Spiderman 2, Terminator 2: Judgment Day, and Aliens have all managed to become as good if not better than the original.
Out of the 20 of so sequels that get rave reviews, only a few successive movies reach the same prognosis. Spiderman 2 was a great movie but Spiderman 3 generated far weaker critical reviews even though it was still a financial success. The same goes with Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines and Alien 3.
Even The Godfather series where the first two are regarded by many critics as the best movies ever made struggled with the 3rd in the series. This is simply because the more movies that are branched out from the original, the less amount of ideas are generated. If the script is weak or the characters become generic than the movie flops, at least critically.
The original Star Wars has withstood the test of time and each movie was successful both critically and financially. It has had the greatest cultural impact of any trilogy ever made and revolutionized the way movies were created with regards to special effects. Whether people agree or disagree, Star Wars is considered the best trilogy ever made and its impact is likely to last for decades to come.
Worst Movie Trilogy
Now trying to find out which trilogy was the worst was a challenge. Directors and producers love to cash in on a financial success, they just can’t help themselves. The mindset is if the first movie did well, than the sequels will do well too.
Unless the first is an amazing critical and financial masterpiece, it’s unlikely that a sequel will match the original’s critical and financial success. I say critically because for some reason sequels do better at the Box Office than their predecessor. Don’t ask me why but I’ve noticed that a lot lately.
I should also mention that occasionally the original is such a financial or critical bomb that for any reason a sequel gets made, it will be better. It has to be better if the original becomes a colossal failure. I don’t know why anyone would try to make a sequel from an awful movie but things happen.
In fact, sometimes a sequel will be made when the first movie was only modestly successful either critically, financially, or both. Sometimes the original gets awful reviews but because it does okay at the box office, producers and writers try to make a sequel. This is what drives horror movies.
At least 90 percent of all horror flicks are critical failures, however, for some reason the audience is entertained. Perhaps its the gallons of blood or infinite amount of violence that gets the audience going.
Horror movies will never stop being made because they are a lot cheaper to produce than other genres, their plot lines are so simple that even your toddler could understand them, and they make money. For example, the Blair Witch Project was produced on a budget of less than 1 million dollars. By the end of its run, it made 248,000,000 worldwide. Recently the movie Paranormal Activity was only made on a budget of between 10,000 and 15,000 dollars. Since it was released, the movie had made well over a 100 million domestically and 40 or so million internationally.
No other genre benefits as well as horror because even if the movie is deemed a financial flop, the loss is rather minimal due to its much lower than normal budget. This means that the story is often panned because too much emphasis is placed on cheap scares and predictable plot lines.
This all leads to the end result to the answer of the worst movie trilogy. It is a result based on opinion rather than on fact because of the numerous available options for the worst movie category.
In my opinion, I think the worst movie trilogy are the 3 sets of the Horror Movie Genre
Sorry to disappoint you but I could not pick one specific worst movie trilogy, so instead I picked the entire horror genre as the biggest supplier of bad movies. This includes the numerous horror sequels of Friday the 13th, Halloween, A Nightmare on Elm Street, Final Destination, Poltergeist, Exorcist, and numerous other horror movie franchises.
There are a few exceptions to the rule such as the Evil Dead trilogy, George A. Romero’s Dawn of the Dead movies or the Scream movies. I’m not being biased because I love the horror genre and many of these movies have decent merit. The problem is that for a lot of these horror franchises the original is excellent but than the sequels will make you wish you were Helen Keller.
I also personally believe that the Leprechaun horror series may top the horror genre as one of the worst movies ever made, both the original and its sequels.
So there you have it, the best and the worst movie trilogies. The choices ultimately depend on the person’s liking of certain movies but at least for the best movie trilogy, there is a clear cut consensus for the winner. As for the worst movie trilogy, there is no clear cut consensus from both the critics and the audience.
There will always be different opinions and interpretations as to which three set rules and which loses but one thing is for certain, there will be plenty of new movies and trilogies to come and any of those could easily be the best or worst movie trilogy.
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