Sadly, Sequels

Reese Bennett, Columnist

It is rare for me to find a sequel of decent quality. It doesn’t help when there are movies using older content and twisting it in a way it was not meant to be twisted, and, although there’s no doubt about it that there have been well-made movies that have been produced recently, it seems as though many movies are heading down a boring, unoriginal, and pointless road.

One of the most irritating movies that has been created, in my opinion, is “Peter Rabbit.” I grew up with Beatrix Potter’s books and animations, especially the ones about Peter and his friends. However, the moment I saw the trailer for the new movie “Peter Rabbit,” I was utterly appalled. The trailer was awful; I still cannot muster words to describe how upset I was. The story of the movie only had little snippets of the true plot from the books, and it’s nothing like the kind of material I had loved when I was little. I guess it works for children that are little and don’t analyze movies the way I do, but children don’t need to be watching this trash humor. For example, most Disney movies and other charming films don’t take away the humor that “Peter Rabbit” contains, but it formats its humor in another, better way. The jokes aren’t made to be charmingly snarky and rude; they actually contribute to the story. “Peter Rabbit” hardly has any of that comedic effect I expect of these movies. To be honest, I was pretty sad that James Gordon and Daisy Ridley were in it too. I like Gordon’s comedy a lot, and Ridley seems like a super cool person. It’s their decision to decide what movies they’ll be in, but I just don’t see any appeal in them being involved in any way in this movie.

Speaking of charming Disney movies, Disney can make mistakes, too. A huge mistake, for instance, is shooting a  live “Dumbo” remake, especially with Tim Burton attached as director. I don’t know why they did it. Were they searching for a new look, a new style? I don’t know, but whatever the reason, it was a poor decision. The original “Dumbo” is a bittersweet, animated film that tugged at the hearts of many, and although I enjoy Tim Burton’s other work, he is not the right fit for this movie. His work is creepy and almost surreal; I saw a picture of a poster online for this new “Dumbo”, and it’s frightening! It’s Tim Burton all right, and I’ll give them that, but it was still awful. Dumbo has small, eerie pupils, and his proportions are strange too. They followed the plot and mood for all their other live remakes of Disney classics, so it illogical to make this one completely different. “The Nightmare Before Christmas” and other Burton works may be Disney, but it there is no way Burton can give the old message of ”Dumbo” without making it eldritch.

Another movie that I personally don’t think is needed is “Mary Poppins Returns.” Although I was less fond of it as a child, I still grew up with the original Mary Poppins. I loved Bert (Dick Van Dyke) and the other characters, and even nowadays I enjoy the movie a lot, but I think the movie will easily be messed up by the sequel. It’ll be weird not having the original characters, but that’s not the worst concern. There’s so many other sequels that have been completely ruined and that people prefer not to think about, like the sequel to “101 Dalmatians” or “Jaws 2,” so I’m not too confident that they won’t do it with this one. For sequels, it doesn’t matter what the budget of the film is. “101 Dalmatians 2” and “Jaws 2” had low budgets, and therefore got low quality. Yet, movies with high budgets can also be bad because they can try to add too much, focus the budget on things that don’t matter, etc.

A lot of films these past couple of years haven’t been all too excellent. Many movies contain poor content, overused plot lines, bad humor, and more. However, to look on the bright side, there has been a few well-praised movies, both new and old, such as “Black Panther,” “Captain America: Winter Soldier,” and “Love, Simon,” and movies coming in the future, such as “The Incredibles 2.” To me, I think “The Incredibles 2” has potential to be a better sequel because from what I’ve seen from the trailers, the content is a new kind of plot that’s fully fleshed-out and interesting. The original “Incredibles” movie also left the audience on a kind of sequel cliffhanger. Plus, it’s got Frozone (Samuel L. Jackson), a true icon, so that’ll be at least one good point. Still, I am even concerned for “The Incredibles 2” because of Disney’s inconsistency in sequel quality, which makes it difficult to tell which road movies like these will travel down. Whether “The Incredibles 2 and other sequels and stand-alone films are good or not, it’s time for movie companies to step up their game again and produce movies that are reputable and appealing to watch.