Despite Randy Meeks laying out the rules for a good sequel in Scream 2, it seems that many horror franchises missed the memo. In fact, Meeks even stated, “The entire horror genre was destroyed by sequels.”
Granted, there are some exceptions to that rule such as The Devil’s Rejects fleshing out the bizarre characters that we first met in House of 1000 Corpses (for better or worse), and Evil Dead 2 cranking up the gore, charm of Bruce Campbell and comedic aspects of the first film. Hell, even Happy Death Day 2 U was really good!
Yet for those few rare gems, there are mountains of far lesser horror sequels to sift through. And lo, for your reading entertainment, that sifting responsibility fell unto me.
I will try and stay away from the multitude of terrible slasher sequels, as there could be a whole list for each franchise’s crap continuations (here’s to you Halloween…), although a couple may rear their ugly heads here.
10. The Hills Have Eyes 2 (2007)
Now, this one is a bit of an anomaly on this list – I’ll explain.
The 2006 remake of Wes Craven’s classic wasn’t incredible, with the 1977 original movie becoming a cult classic. The remake was satisfying for gore hounds and updated the OG movie’s commentary of American morality, and did brilliantly at the box office.
Makes sense for a sequel to be put into production pretty quickly then.
When the sequel did arrive in 2007, it was a disappointing mess of gore and sexual assault with a weak plot. Bludgeoned by critics, the film ended up with a 12% score on Rotten Tomatoes. Ouch.
But the real kicker was that the teaser trailer for this film was brilliant. It was simple, chilling and just showed a bound person getting dragged through the desert by a hidden figure – from the perspective of the captive individual.
The eerie ‘Insect Eyes’ by Devendra Banhart plays and begins to rise into a crescendo, only for the music and hidden figures to vanish in the dust.
Expectations for this sequel were therefore through the
roof, and only made the final product suck even more.