Reel Talk: Are sequels ever really necessary?


Jillian Leiby, JagWire opinions editor

This week, the prequel/sequel to “Snow White and the Huntsman,” aptly titled “The Huntsman: Winter’s War,” will be in theaters. It’s a movie I have been both dreading and anticipating. Dreading because I knew it was going to be bad, but anticipating because I hoped it wouldn’t be.

Here’s the deal: The first movie was not good. It was not awful by any means, but it didn’t warrant a sequel. Despite this, there were parts that I would’ve liked the sequel to have explored, such as Ravenna (played by Charlize Theron)’s past experiences with killing men in power in order to stay beautiful. Now that is a movie I would love to watch.

Instead, we are getting more background around Chris Hemsworth’s Huntsman, a character who was, is and will probably continue to be eclipsed by strong women. I don’t care about him. The first movie barely makes me think I should.

I actually cared about Ravenna, and Theron’s complex portrayal of her. I didn’t need a redemption, I just wanted to watch more of her. And with the casting of Emily Blunt, an actress who I love a lot, I foolishly let my hopes get the better of me.

You can’t make a good sequel to a bad movie. Or, at least one that doesn’t warrant one. For instance, “Miss Congeniality” was an OK movie, but the sequel was terrible, unnecessary and ruined actual good parts of the first one.     

My hopes were shot down, with “The Huntsman” clocking in a whopping 19 percent on Rotten Tomatoes. And, if you didn’t like the first one (no matter how successful it was box office-wise), you aren’t going to make the effort to see the second one.

The saddest part comes in a USA Today review I read of the movie yesterday. According to the publication, “Theron, for as much as she stars in the marketing materials, is hardly in the movie.”

So, you mean to tell me I have been worrying about a movie that stars my favorite actress, when she doesn’t even star in it at all? This is why I should be running a movie studio. I would have utilized the only good part of the first movie (Theron), and I wouldn’t have revealed the big twist (that Blunt’s Freya fights with Hemsworth and Jessica Chastain against her sister Ravenna) in the trailer.

Then again, if I were really head of this movie, I don’t think I would have made it in the first place.


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