America’s Comically Awful Sequels (You Didn’t Know Existed)

“What are you talking about, this movie is hilarious!”

~Extremely drunk people watching the following

caddyshack 2

There’s an old saying in Hollywood that goes, “We’re in the business of making dreams.  And when those dreams can be repurposed after the fact for additional profit, we’re in the business of brutally violating and mangling those dreams to remind you that nothing is sacred and your childhood is long dead and gone and the world is a cruel place driven by cold logic.”  It’s a little wordy, sure, but when you truly take that sentiment to heart you can finally make sense of the fact that our weird and brief obsession with the “Yo Quiero Taco Bell” dog abstractly helped spawn not one, not two, but three fucking Beverly Hills Chihuahua films.

For as long as we’ve had movies that we love, we’ve had sequels to those movies that take different actors, directors, and writers that served as nothing but direct-to-video cash grabs from bored studio executives.  Yes, there are instances where the sequel is arguably even better than the original, but for every Godfather: Part II there are a dozen Return of Jafars.  And while we all are painfully aware of the mega blockbuster sequels that make, essentially, all the money while being objectively horrible (looking at you, Spider-Man 3) you’d be surprised at how many of your favorite films were sequeled (shut up, it’s a word) without you having the slightest idea of their existence.

Yes, they’re awful.  Often hilariously so.  That’s why we’re let’s get the largest bottle of the strongest liquor that’s within reach and get drunk together as we discuss…

America’s Comically Awful Sequels (You Didn’t Know Existed)

 blues brothers 2000 Due to an eternal agreement with Satan, Prince of Lies, Hollywood is required to release a certain number of terrible sequels that have next to nothing to do with the original each year.  These are typically based on shitty scripts that were slightly re-written in order to allow them to loosely piggyback on a well-established franchise, which is how you end up with a Halloween movie that manages to exist without a single reference or allusion to Michael Myers.

Now while some might choose to look at the following films and bemoan the artistic desecration of some of our nation’s finest motion pictures, we’re in a pretty good zone right now as far as our buzz is concerned, so we’re going to focus less on the fact that these films exist and represent an affront to the creative spirit, and more on the fact that they exist and are so awful they are absolutely hilarious.  We even included the trailers for these films so you can watch and giggle along (we recommend getting a little drunk first.  Shut up, we don’t care if you’re at work, that’s why we invented chewing gum and dozens of methods to discretely vomit into the wastepaper basket at your desk).

American Psycho II:  All American Girl

american psycho 2

Watch the trailer here.

There’s so much going on in this movie, we don’t even know where to begin.  American Psycho was a 2000 classic cult film starring Christian Bale as a wealthy investment banker and sadistic murderer (these are two separate vocations).  It’s dark, twisted, and polarizing to such an extent that it remains culturally relevant to this day.  Hell, to this day people still debate whether the events that occurred were real, or just the sadistic hallucinations of a psychopath.  American Psycho II is a 2002 direct-to-video film based on a script called The Girl Who Wouldn’t Die that tossed in an awkward scene with “Patrick Bateman” at the beginning to make it count as a sequel starring a 19-year-old Mila Kunis who would go on to publically express embarrassment for her involvement in the film.  Now, it’s very likely that you have seen American Psycho, and if not you’ve at least seen scenes or stills from it.  You hopefully have not seen American Psycho II, but if you have, we can only pray that you were extremely inebriated throughout the entire screening.

American Psycho II begins with a 12-year-old girl watching her babysitter get killed by Patrick Bateman, with Christian Bale choosing not to reprieve his famous role and instead being replaced by Michael Kremko who has taken on such iconic turns as “Bouncer in The Chippendales Murder” and Gorgeous Guy in two (2!) episodes of Queer As Folk.”   And how can we leave out his unforgettable turn as “Stripper #5” in Detroit Rock City?  While he begins to dissect the babysitter, he gets stabbed (to death) in the neck (to death) by the young child (of death?) who grew up to be Mila Kunis, a criminology student studying under former FBI agent Professor Starkman (played by William Fucking Shatner) who is determined to get a teaching assistant position under The Shat.

Kunis then starts killing students she views as competition.  This movie has everything.  There’s an actor named Charles Officer playing a character named Keith Lawson.  There’s a student who gets strangled to death with a condom followed by a “ribbed for her pleasure” crack.  And of course, the film’s climax involves a scene with Mila Kunis (19) trying to seduce William Shatner (71) and then ultimately killing him by blowing a kiss at him that makes him fall out of a fucking open window somehow.  That is not a metaphor, that is not some exaggeration, we are not making up a fake ending because “har har this movie is so ridiculous it probably ends with something crazy like aliens invading or Shatner dying by falling out of a window when Jackie from That ‘70s Show blows a kiss at him”, that is exactly how the movie fucking goes down.  Seriously, click that link.  Watch the video.  It’s a minute long.  It’s wonderful.

Actually, come to think of it, the more we talk about this movie, the more we want to world to see it.  So yes, seek out this movie, but for the love of all that is holy, make sure you get drunk beforehand.  We take no responsibility for the actions of anyone who makes the foolish decision to watch this film sober.  That is just pure madness.

The Great Escape II:  The Untold Story (1988)

 the great escape 2

Watch the trailer here.

Look at that poster.  Just really look at that, goddamn it.  Stare into it until you can hear the ocean.  “Seventy-five men escaped.  Twenty-five men made it.  Fifty men were brutally executed.  Now, it’s pay back time!”  Let all that sink in.  The red “revenge” lettering.  The misspelling of “Payback.”  Christopher Reeve’s beautiful mustache.  The look on Judd Hirsch’s face that just screams, “I was nominated for an Oscar eight years ago, what the fuck happened?”

In 1963 the Steve McQueen film The Great Escape, based on the true story of a mass escape from the Stalag Luft III prison camp in World War II, was released to theaters.  It would go on to be one of the highest grossing films of the year, becoming such an instant classic that even now it is listed as the 118th highest rated film of all time on imdb.com.  Naturally, when you have a gripping yet personal war film that ends with fifty American POWs being executed by Nazis, you’re left with no other choice but to wait twenty five years and release a three hour made-for-TV fictionalized account of Stalag Luft escapees investigating the murder of the fifty POWs that were executed at the end of the first film with a cast headlined by Superman and Jeff Goldblum’s dad in Independence Day.

The movie is split into two parts.  The first half of the film needlessly retells the plot of the original, only with Christopher Reeves instead of Steve McQueen before shifting into a story of three Americans investigating the murder of fifty escapees in a way that has about as much in common with its source material as an episode of CSI investigating a mass murder where they dub over the initial description of the crime scene with Tony Denison saying, “Looks like the Nazis killed our friends.”  So if you liked The Great Escape, but wished that there was a random love story, a Cold War-driven cover-up by the American military, and a pointless action-packed shootout for a climax, than you’re processer chip was damaged during shipping, please return to the factory so we can re-calibrate your empathy sensors.  Thank you.

Grease 2

grease 2

Watch the trailer here.

Released four years after the classic film adaptation of Grease, Grease 2 took place two years after the previous film because time is relative when you’re making a film so bad it makes the Jim Jacobs (the composer of the original musical) call it “awful…the pits.”  Instead of John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John, they cast two young relatively unknown actors to give them a shot at stardom, one of whom would go on to have a successful film career that would earn her three Academy Award nominations, the other of whom would go on to be able to say that he once was in a movie with Michelle Pfieffer (yes the Michelle Pfeiffer!).

Considering that 90% of the charm of the original movie was the musical numbers (the plot of “hot chick from Australia chooses to dress slutty to be the beard of win the heart of John Travolta” doesn’t really have much in the way of substance), this movie was essentially doomed for disaster from the start.  Why’s that?  Well, let’s just put it this way—there is a song where one character tries to trick his sweetheart into losing her virginity to him by taking her to a fallout shelter, faking a nuclear attack, and singing her a song called “Let’s Do It For Our Country.”  So, yeah, that’s a thing.  That’s a thing that happens.   Someone sat down, wrote that with a straight look on his face, and got paid shortly thereafter.

Grase 2 stars Michelle Pfeiffer as the leader of the Pink Ladies, Stephanie Zione, who only dates greasers.  Poor Maxwell Caulfield, whose career never really recovered from the film, wowed at an audition to win the part of Michael Carrington, a British exchange student who was the cousin of Sandy Olsson from the original.  If any of you just paused to say, “Wait, he’s British, and they’re just blindly saying he’s cousins with someone from Australia as if they’re practically the same countries?” then congratulations, you have a better idea of geography than anyone involved in the production of this film.

Anyway, while the original movie has Sandy Olsson winning over Danny Zuko by dressing in a skin-tight leather catsuit and smoking, Grease 2 has Michael Carrington, played by poor, poor, Maxwell Caulfield, we cannot stress how badly we feel for him, winning over Stephanie Zinone (Neat!  Both their names start with Z!) by dressing up as someone who is really good at being a biker gang member.  Because, remember kids, love is about changing yourself to meet the expectations of others.

The movie did so horribly that, while originally intended to be the second of four Grease films, the producers decided they might as well cut their losses and leave it at the two.  Oh, and we’d also like to offer the following Wikipedia plot description without any further context, just to give you an idea of what kind of film we’re dealing with here.

Following an unusual biology lesson (‘Reproduction’) given by Mr. Stuart (Tab Hunter), a gang of rival motorcyclist surprise the T-Birds at the bowling alley.”  Just let that sink in for a moment.  Yeah.

Road House 2:  Last Call

road house 2

Watch the trailer here.

The difference between Road House, the 1989 Patrick Swayze action vehicle, and 2006’s straight-to-video Road House 2:  Last Call can best be illustrated by looking at their respective covers.  First, Road House.

 road house

Hell yeah, look at that.  You’ve got ‘80s haircut Swayze, all decked out in jeans with a much higher waist than necessary, and boots with heals.  And if you make fun of his hair, his jeans, or his boots, he will straight up wreck your shit.  How can we tell?  Because while he’s there, just casually leaning against a brick wall like it’s nothing, he’s practicing martial arts with his shirt off, and banging ‘80s hot women, and straight up exploding cars.  The only way you could more effectively convey Swayze’s badassery would be if you included a fourth inset picture of the scene where he straight up rips out a dude’s throat, but that’s probably a little too graphic for them to get away with (though the fact that he has physically entered a woman in the middle picture is totally fine).  Meanwhile, Road House 2 gives us this…

road house 2                                                                        

Look, it’s the lead singer from That Thing You Do wearing a scorpion belt buckle while, and we’re guessing here, walking two strippers to their car to make sure they get home safe after a long shift?  Road House 2:  Last Call attempts to fill Patrick Swayze’s shoes with this fucking guy.  That’d be like trying to fill Patrick Swayze’s shoes with this fucking guy we’re far too drunk to try to think of anything as ridiculous.  Of course, Johnathon Schaech (the That Thing You Do guy, but not the one that everyone liked, or the goofy one that everyone also liked) thankfully doesn’t play Dalton.  No, in this movie, he is Dalton’s son, Shane Tanner, though instead of being a legendary cooler, he’s a D.E.A. agent whose uncle gets beat up and sent to the hospital after refusing to sell his bar to a drug dealer named Wild Bill (played by Jake Busey, aka, Gary Busey’s marketdly less famous and less crazy son).

Shane eventually ends up running his uncle’s bar while he’s in the hospital, much to the dismay of Wild Bill.  Apparently, the bar, called The Black Pelican, is ideal for drug running because it’s close to the border and screenwriters are lazy sometimes.  At this point, and we’re directly quoting a Wikipedia entry that obviously was not written by an actual human being, “like his uncle, Shane refuses to sell the bar and damages the numerous thugs that Wild Bill sends his way.”  Damages the numerous thugs.  That is the most unsettling description for “beat up a bunch of bad guys” we have ever heard.  Who says that?  Lizard people serial killers?

Anyway, we objectively hate this movie because they needlessly decided they have to center the subplot around the fact that Dalton was murdered years before the film takes place, which is clearly impossible as Road House clearly established Dalton to be an immortal God with muscles and a mullet.  Apparently a Miami crime syndicate kingpin paid Jake Busey, a cooler at the bar with Dalton, to kill him, and Jake Busey somehow managed to kill Patrick fucking Swzye, and all this is bullshit.  No.  Fuck this movie.  This stopped being funny.  Next movie.                                                                                                                                                                             

Mean Girls 2

mean girls 2

Watch the trailer here.

Mean Girls was one of those rare teen comedies that manages to be smarter, funnier, and more enjoyable than the majority of its peers.  Part of that stemmed from the fact that, as strange as it is to think about now, there was a period where Lindsay Lohan was a pretty good young actress and not a total train wreck of a person.  Much of that had to do with the fact that the movie was written by Tina Fey, one of the top comedic minds we have to offer.  So naturally, it made perfect sense to have ABC Family take the basic concept of “shallow, popular, attractive girls in High School can be shitty to other high school students” and replace Tina Fey with the writing group consisting of “a production assistant on Pineapple Express” and “the writing team that paired up to write five Barbie movies.”

Of course, while Tina Fey might be able to bring you a script filled with a mix of “engaging, smartly written characters” and “memorable and hilarious one-liners,” she probably wouldn’t have thought to make a movie with characters such as “Mandi Weatherly; the ditzy girl with the raging libido” or “the hypochondriac Hope Plotkin.”  That’s right, bitches, as the trailer and DVD cover and every two bit plot synopsis lets you know, The plastics are back!  Only, this time, instead of skewering an overrepresented and often lazy film genre through a bitingly smart script, there’s three pretty, mean girls (like the name!) and a tomboy as a main character.  Yes, you heard us right, a tomboy, can you believe it?  Such a daring casting decision!  She’s an 18-year-old high school senior, and her name is Johanna Mitchell, but guess what?  She goes by the name “Jo” because that’s almost a boy’s name!  Crazy!  She likes cars, and takes advanced shop class at school (what?!  Shop class?  That’s a class for boys!  What a tomboy!)  She befriends a girl named Abby Hanover, who is attractive, but not a tomboy, so the Plastics are threatened by her.  For some reason, Abby’s dad offers to pay Jo’s college if she remains friends with his daughter, because it’s very hard to make friends when you’re a very attractive blonde high school senior?

Anyway, Jo and Abby start a clique called the Anti-Plastics, where they play pranks on the Plastics while Jo decides to run for Homecoming Court because clichés are relatable and writing is hard sometimes.  In response to the pranks, the head of the Plastics steals the homecoming court charity money and frames Jo.  While Jo is expelled, she challenges the Plastics to a game of flag football (ha!  Football?  Girls can’t play football, what a crazy tomboy!) and wins (Of course she won, being the scrappy tomboy she is!) while eventually proving her innocence with the help of a computer hacker, because if you throw every bad teen movie into a blender it’s pretty easy to get a 90-minute movie that’s good enough to air on ABC Family, and creativity sometimes just isn’t worthy all the effort of “caring about your final product” or “not creating mindless dribble safe in the knowledge that no matter how bad it is you can probably successfully market it to 12-year-old girls.”

Staying Alive  

staying alive

Watch the trailer here.

 There are two kinds of people in the world.  Those who know that Sylvester Stallone directed a sequel to Saturday Night Fever that centered around  John Travolta’s dream to make it big as a Broadway dancer, and those who just spent the last five minutes darting your eyes between the beginning of this sentence and the movie poster pictured above while going, “Noo, that can’t be real.  Right?  Nooooo.”   Strangely enough, this movie was one of the top grossing films of 1983 (because cocaine) while still being largely panned as one of, if not the, worst sequel of all time (because, seriously, just look at that).  John Travolta was nominated for an Oscar when he first portrayed Tony Manero in 1977’s Saturday Night Fever, partly because our nation was stuck in that awkward phase where we thought Disco was cool and partly because a decent, confident performance mixed with good dancing was apparently enough to get you invited to the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion back in the day.

Now, when you’ve been nominated for an Oscar, you tend to have a slew of roles to choose from, so we’re just left to wonder why, of all the parts available to him, Travolta decided to go with a poorly conceived sequel with a poster image that shows you enough silver taint to last you a thousand lifetimes.  Just look at it.  Look at it.

The plot basically revolves around John Travolta moving to Manhattan to become a Broadway dancer while cheating on his girlfriend a bunch.  That’s it.  But, again, look at that poster.  LOOK AT IT.  To be honest, of all the items on this list, Staying Alive is easily the most well-known, but at the same time, some of you might not know the sentence “Sylvester Stallone directed the sequel to Saturday Night Fever” and that was a wrong we had to right.  So here you go, America.  Here’s your damn movie.  Now, time to get drunk and laugh at them.  Who’s with us?

One response to “America’s Comically Awful Sequels (You Didn’t Know Existed)

  1. Pingback: The Most Absurd Animated Spin-Offs of Classic Movies | affotd

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