The film industry has increasingly adopted an approach where long-standing franchises and cinematic universes have become the norm. Any property that grows is seen as franchise potential, which can sometimes inspire new direction or simply exploit diminishing returns.
It’s not easy for a long-standing franchise to have a great reputation across the board, but there are a surprising number of series where the landmark entry happens much later in the franchise.
ten Mission: Impossible only comes into play after serious upheaval
Without doubt none of the Impossible mission feature films are bad, and each is emblematic of the visionary director who is at the helm of the film. JJ Abrams Mission: Impossible 3 breathes fresh air into the Tom Cruise action franchise, but that’s only Ghost protocol that the series truly becomes a cinematic masterpiece.
There is much debate about which of the last Impossible mission the movies are the best which is a testament to the amazing sets that are at the center of every movie. Movies only get bigger and more ambitious.
9 Fast & The Furious evolves over time into its current heightened chaos
Sometimes it’s clear that a movie will turn out to be a standout franchise, but the evolution of the Fast and furious movies is something no one could have predicted. The series almost went straight to video for its third installment, and it lost its center star on several occasions, until Fast Furious gathered everyone.
Fast Five is the first time that the films properly incorporate the exaggerated level of fun that has been able to turn car series into a multi-billion dollar franchise. Two more films are on the way and they will only make the first entries in the series more unrecognizable.
8 Friday the 13th finds its place and peaks in the middle of the franchise
Slasher series can be easy to dismiss, simply because they’re so often inundated with endless sequels that only dilute the idea. It’s interesting to see this slasher series like Halloween, a nightmare on Elm Street, and Hellraiser all start with their best material, to achieve diminishing returns.
This is not true for Friday 13, which takes some time to fully materialize and it was not until the third film that Jason Voorhees even gets his iconic hockey mask. Opinions are divided on which Friday the movie is the best, but it’s usually Part VI: Jason Lives, it is distinguished.
7 James Bond’s spy missions aren’t pristine from the jump
There are over two dozen films that chronicle James Bond’s spy exploits, Agent 007. Granted, the early James Bond films benefit from Ian Fleming’s source material, but the start of the franchise is a bit awkward and there is still a lot of discussion about who the Superior Leap is.
Many different notable entries in the series exist with Goldfinger, Casino Royale, and Fall from the sky all heralded as some of Bond’s best releases. Some of the Bond movies during Pierce Brosnan’s run get pretty lazy, but the franchise is back on its way to greatness.
6 Mad Max gradually improves with each movie
There could only be four entries in George Miller’s Mad Max series, but there is no doubt that the final film, Road of fury, is the director’s crowning achievement and there are considerably high expectations around his next Furiosa prequel movie.
The first three Mad Max the movies are by no means bad, and Miller always establishes a fascinating and gritty universe throughout the trilogy. These films are so much simpler in scope compared to what is accomplished in Route of the Fury. It’s strange to think of something like Beyond Thunderdome as picturesque, but it is the magic of Route of the Fury.
5 The Gratuitous Saw Films Reached Surprising Heights After Its Myth Evolved
The Seen the franchise helped popularize a new violent horror trend during the 2000s and ownership remains relevant with Spiral: The Saw Book will be released in 2021. The public keeps coming back to Seen, even after it looked like torture-based horror movies ran out of ideas.
There is a strong argument to be made that the stripped down nature of the original film is Seen at its best, but there is a lot of love for Saw VI like a star beyond the initial trilogy. Saw VI enjoys the value of five Myths Movies to explore.
4 Planet of the Apes grows beyond its shocking twist and finds greater depth
The original Planet of the Apes The ’60s and’ 70s series is still considered a classic, but it’s not perfect and there’s a lot of nostalgia for the movies just because of the massive ending of the original film. The original films explore fascinating themes, but they’re still hard to take seriously on some level.
Matt Reeves modern trilogy, which continues the series, reaches greater heights and achieves a tale that is as frightening as it is empowering. Each of these films has its charms, but it’s Dawn of the Planet of the Apes which is often considered the top.
3 Resident Evil is at its best as it gets more and more over the top
There’s a lot on the way when it comes to new resident Evil content and it should be interesting to see how these new efforts will recontextualize Paul WS Anderson’s action-horror franchise In the process. The resident Evil the movies are unmistakably silly and solid showcases of Milla Jovovich’s ability to defend herself against monsters.
The first film is the more restrained, but the chaotic heights that are reached in later entries, like Resident Evil: Apocalypse, are arguably more enjoyable in a pure entertainment sense. It achieves an appropriate level of spectacle.
2 Godzilla’s classic Kaiju series takes time to achieve greatness
Just like James Bond, the Godzilla the franchise is practically an institution which is much more than just a series of films. More 30 Godzilla films exist, as well as a multitude of extensions to his kaiju universe. Despite the simplistic nature of this giant monster, Godzilla remains an evergreen parable.
The quality of Godzilla films take a while to develop properly and the early films are hardly indicative of what the franchise has to offer. Most recent Shin godzilla is a revealing entry, but the introduction of Mecha-Godzilla is also iconic.
1 The Marvel Cinematic Universe Doesn’t Really Shine Until Phase Two
There are more than two dozen interconnected films within the Marvel Cinematic Universe, with years of movies and TV shows to come. Audiences were initially impressed with the ability of a handful of separate films to merge into The Avengers, But the efforts of the MCU’s Phase 1 are hardly their strongest material.
It is easy to argue that the climax of phase three, Avengers: Endgame, is the best in the MCU, but other movies like Captain America: Winter Soldier are better in terms of pure cinema. It is only during Phase Two that the MCU begins to elevate its productions.
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