FILM SEQUELS ARE TAKING OVER WHERE ORIGINALITY DROPPED OFF

           

For Hicksflicks.com, Aug. 8, 2014

EDITOR'S NOTE: This ‘Hicks on Flicks' column from April 3, 1983, is about sequels, which seemed to run rampant in the early '80s. Whew! Glad that cycle passed. (Snark alert!) Note that the as-yet unreleased ‘Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom,' ‘Smokey and the Bandit Part 3,' ‘2010,' ‘Rambo: First Blood Part II' and ‘Twilight Zone — The Movie' had different titles, and a TV-to-big-screen adaptation, ‘Dallas — The Movie,' never happened.

DON'T YOU THINK  it's a bit silly, all the sequels, remakes and spinoffs we're getting these days?

Some of them are movie events to look forward to, of course. I want to see "Return of the Jedi" as much as anyone. Steven Spielberg begins shooting "Indiana Jones and the Temple of Death" this month, which should definitely brighten the summer of '84. And Spielberg's theatrical version of TV's "The Twilight Zone," due later this year, looks like a fascinating prospect.

But I'm beginning to think such projects are becoming the rule instead of the exception.

Here is it only April 3rd, and we've already had three sequels this year ("The Sting II," "The Black Stallion Returns," "Triumphs of a Man Called Horse") and a remake ("Lady Chatterly's Lover").

And coming up fast are the following:

           

Sequels – "Return of the Jedi," "Indiana Jones and the Temple of Death," "Superman III," "Psycho II," "Curse of the Pink Panther," "Staying Alive" (after "Saturday Night Fever II"), "Porky's II: The Next Day," "Jaws 3-D," "Smokey Is the Bandit," "Star Trek III: In Search of Spock," "Creepshow II," "Day of the Dead" (after "Dawn of the Dead" and "Night of the Living Dead"), "Amityville 3-D," "Revenge of the Ninja," "Cannonball Run II," "2010 – Odyssey Two," "First Blood, Part II: The Mission." And, of course, the two James Bond films, "Octopussy" and "Never Say Never Again."

Remakes – "Unfaithfully Yours," "To Be or Not to Be," "Cheech & Chong's the Corsican Brothers," "Greystoke: The Legend of Tarzan, Lord of the Apes," "Scarface," "The Man Who Loved Women," "Mata Hari," "Mutiny on the Bounty," "Breathless" and "Hercules."

Spinoffs – "The Twilight Zone," "Dallas – The Movie," "Supergirl," "Strange Brew" (Rick Moranis and Dave Thomas as "SCTV's" Doug & Bob McKenzie).

We're training movie audiences to expect films that are unoriginal. I overheard some people at Plitt's Regency Theater a week ago asking if "Max Dugan Returns" is a sequel to something.

It's not, by the way.

And we haven't even touched on the ripoffs, films like "Ator," which is really just watered down "Conan the Barbarian," and "Treasure of the Four Crowns," a feeble attempt to duplicate "Raiders of the Lost Ark," and the two dozen "Halloween" clones we get each year.

Whatever happened to originality?

It became Originality II, I guess.