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Editorials

Don’t Make That: Films That Don’t Need A Sequel/Reboot

May 8, 2019
Goonies Cast

A common complaint is that Hollywood lacks ideas, with everything being either a sequel, prequel, reboot or remake. This doesn’t seem to be stopping with Disney releasing a remake of “The Lion King” and “Aladdin” this year. But there are some films that many people regard as untouchable, that don’t need a remake or even a sequel.

Back To The Future

Doc Brown & Marty (Universal Pictures)

Back to the Future already has two sequels, and the world is forever grateful that the cast and crew remained largely the same throughout the trilogy. Christopher Lloyd and Michael J. Fox’s chemistry in the series is one of the many, many highlights, and would be an almost impossible task for a new pair of actors to replicate. Doing something different wouldn’t feel like “Back to the Future”. If the reboot also travelled 30 years into the past, we’d have Marty Mcfly meeting his parent’s in the ’90s, which has the potential to be funny but wouldn’t really highlight the generational differences between him and his parents as well as the original.

In terms of a sequel, Fox suffers from Parkinson’s disease, so isn’t as active as he used to be, Lloyd is still working regularly and has reprised his role as Emmet Brown, for several tie in and parodies, including the video game. Director, Robert Zemeckis has no plans for a fourth instalment and says part 4 won’t be made until he’s dead.

Ferris Bueller’s Day Off

Lead actors Matthew Broderick, Mia Sara & Alan Ruck (Credit: Craig Duffy)
Lead actors Matthew Broderick, Mia Sara & Alan Ruck (Craig Duffy)

Most of John Hughe’s filmography could fill this list, but the hardest one to imagine a version of in present day is this one. Ferris’ plan to help his best friend Cameron would be much more difficult in the age of mobile phones and the internet, all it would take is one tweet and he would be caught out. While it could be argued that Ferris dodging internet fame would still be interesting, the overall tone and themes of the film, enjoying life, as well as the idea of “having a day off” would be lost if he was constantly dodging cameras.

Interestingly, a sequel has been written, sort of. It reportedly follows a middle-aged Ferris, who is now a life coach, and, yep you guessed it, has another day off. While exploring a 40 something Ferris’ life could be interesting and offer some funny insights into dealing with a mid-life crisis, it’s unlikely it would have the same heart without Hughes, who died in 2009, and would probably just ride the nostalgia of the original.

The Goonies

Goonies Cast
“It’s our time now, down here, in 2023” (Warner Bros)

The Goonies is likewise another example of a film that would never work with today’s technology, mobile phones would ruin dozens of films, as well as the internet. The Goonies putting a doubloon and map on eBay doesn’t make a thrilling adventure film. Even if the film was set in the 80’s everyone would need to be recast, and recreating those iconic kids would be daunting for any young actor, not to mention that it would probably be a franchise with modern action editing. Not to mention the franchise it would spawn

Speaking of franchising, there was talk of a sequel in 2014, but there has been little concrete news about it since. Most of the actors have moved on, either playing much bigger roles (the gang would include Samwise Gamgee and Thanos if they were to reunite) or moved away from acting all together. It could still happen though, after all “Goonies never say die”

Inception

Inception Screenshot - Leonardo DiCaprio
But was he in a dream or not? (Warner Bros)

Christopher Nolan’s 2010 thriller has a cliffhanger ending ripe with for sequel set up- Cobb turns away from his spinning top to be with his children, unsure if he is in a dream. Nolan has never returned to this world, despite the critical and commercial acclaim, but has explained the ending.

Aside from The Dark Knight Trilogy, Nolan doesn’t do sequels, and Inception is clearly his baby. Despite the world-building, there isn’t really any need for a follow-up, with most questions being answered and character arcs completed.

A reboot could happen, but without Nolan, it likely wouldn’t have the same creativity or brains to it, and would likely be a franchise starter, with each sequel being a different dream heist. It sounds cool, but a lot of what makes “Inception” special is that it’s unique.

Leon: The Professional

Leon : The Professional
American actress Natalie Portman and French actor Jean Reno on the set of the film “Leon”, directed by Luc Besson. (Photo by Patrick CAMBOULIVE/Sygma via Getty Images)

Luc Besson has been responsible for several films that could easily have started a franchise, and tried to. But one that definitely shouldn’t get a sequel is Leon, the story about the unlikely friendship formed between a hitman and an orphaned child. The sequel set up is obvious, with Mathilda wanting to follow in Leon’s footsteps from the beginning, despite his objections.

But his objections are exactly why it doesn’t need a sequel. Although there is little doubt about Natalie Portman’s acting ability, two out of three of the original main characters perished in the final act. Without that central relationship, the film would be a generic action film, which is what a sequel would risk becoming. The alternative is just a rehash of the original, which also doesn’t sound appealing.

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