Why oh why didn't I look ahead to this one all those months ago? I have used almost all of my favorite sequels in previous posts, and my goal was to never double up. I've used Spider-Man 2. I've used The Dark Knight. I've used The Godfather Part II. Just last week, I used T2. Damn it!!
Anyway, this gives me a chance to do something interesting. This week I'm not focusing on the second film but the third. There are instances, although rare, where the third in a trilogy or series is better than the second, or even the original.
Another Thursday is here. This week on Wandering through the Shelves' Thursday Movie Picks, we pay tribute to the Sequel.
Here are my picks:
Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
Dir. Steven Spielberg, 1989
When I was a kid, this was my favorite of Steven Spielberg's Indiana Jones films. As I've gotten older, I have realized the importance of Raiders of the Lost Ark on a whole other level and believe it to be the best of the series. But there is so much to love her. It stands as the only true sequel to Raiders in that it follows the events of the original in chronology, taking place a few years later, but offering another adventure in keeping the Nazis from getting their grubby hands on a priceless artifact of great power. This time, it's The Holy Grail, the quest for which is the life's work of Henry Jones, Sr. (Sean Connery), Indy's father. The chemistry between Ford and Connery is amazing, and this movie is every bit as fun, if not more so, than the original. "Only the penitent man will pass."
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
Dir. Alfonso Cuarón, 2004
I might as well see if I can continue picking movies directed by Alfonso Cuarón. This is my third in as many weeks, and, if that's not enough coincidence for you, his only installment in the Harry Potter happens to be the third, the best movie of them all...period. It's also my second favorite of the novels after Half-Blood Prince. Cuarón handles this part of the franchise the most imaginative way, making it probably too dark for some of the lovers of the books, but gorgeously dark nonetheless. And a lot of fun!
The Bourne Ultimatum
Dir. Paul Greengrass, 2007
Jason Bourne movies are good because Matt Damon is so capable of being badass. That was my running theme when I covered the original Bourne Trilogy as part of my When I Was Thirty series. Damon needed a badass director, and he found one in Paul Greengrass. Doug Liman's work on the first one was fine. It's a great movie. But, when Greengrass took over (much to the chagrin of shaky hand-held haters), he really amped this trilogy up to another level entirely. The Bourne Ultimatum is not quite as good as The Bourne Supremacy in terms of story, but it is a great conclusion to said story and the badassness is amped up to an even higher level. The Morocco set piece is seriously one of the most exciting sequences I've ever seen.