Note: This Collider original feature was initially published on a prior date, but has been moved to the front page to further highlight our original content.
Every successful movie these days seems to get a sequel. It’s hard to capture lightning in a bottle twice, so some sequels lean so heavily on the concept of the first film that it feels like a lazy rehash (see: The Hangover Part II), while others reinvent the wheel a little too strongly, resulting in a sequel that loses its connection to what made the first movie so popular (see: The Matrix Revolutions). That’s what makes crafting a sequel so difficult, and only in very rare cases are sequels actually better than their predecessors.
So with sequels continuing to be Hollywood’s go-to when an original film or concept is a smashing success, we thought we’d look back at the select few follow-ups that actually improved upon their predecessors.