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12 Horror Sequels That Lived Up To or Outdid the Original!

Hellbound Hellraiser 2Sequels are naturally the source of much controversy as well as ample anticipation and excitement. Like most things in life, they range anywhere from bad to good to excellent. Some sequels are little more than an attempt to cash in on the name of a successful franchise. Others represent the best of intentions gone badly, and, in rare instances, a sequel will live up to or even outdo its predecessor.

One early cinematic example of a sequel that lived up to its predecessor can be found in The Bride of Frankenstein. This follow-up, which saw Frankenstein's James Whale returning to the director's chair, took an unconventional approach to the love story and did justice to the original film in the process. Another great example is Terminator 2: Judgment Day. The 1991 film blew the original Terminator film out of the water. With effective use of CGI and a great script, T2 still holds up as an excellent sequel to this day.

Since we think that sequels sometimes get an unnecessarily bad rap, we are bringing you 12 examples of sequels that lived up to our outdid the original! 


  • Dustin

    What about CHILD’S PLAY 2? I’m surprised that wasn’t on the list. Yeah, it was something of a retread of the first film, but it showed more of Chucky’s sinister side and broadened the horizon on the mythology some that respected the first film but really pushed the envelope.

    • ariessiren

      Childs play two was so bad dude come on

      • Dustin

        It was better than SEED OF CHUCKY. Plus the scene where he takes out the foster father going down the basement steps had some serious psychological punch on me as a child. Lol

    • M M

      Child’s Play 2 easily out shined the first film. It belongs on this list. Certainly instead of new nightmare which was just awful.

      • Dustin

        Whoa whoa whoa. Slow down. NEW NIGHTMARE pretty much restored faith in the franchise to the fans as it proved there was much more intelligence and creativity to be drawn from the mythology. It was better than FREDDY’S DEAD, don’t forget…

        • M M

          New nightmare had a great concept and story, but the whole thing was taken down by heather (who was always a terrible actress), her incredibly annoying, and equally terrible at acting son, and some really terrible fx during the climax. There was certainly a lot to like but overall it was fairly terrible.

          • Dustin

            Really? I liked Heather in that movie! She was great! I do agree about her son’s acting though. And it was early 90s and Wes (thank God he never pursued an acting career) had little money to work with so I can forgive the FX. But the story packed a punch and still gets me thinking to this day about the impact of horror on our reality.

  • Mumm-Ra

    Great list. The first 4 F13th movies had the most suspense.DOTD is my favorite zombie movie. Also who can forget “Tutti F*ckin Fruiti”.

    • MrX13

      Totally agree with you. First four F13th movie were really good. They all had an eerie vibe to it and was done really well.

      Totally loved Dawn of the Dead out of the three Dead movies. Great characters and good story. Really loved the visual effects of that movie. Plus I love how they show the main character have fun in the mall before all the madness happens.

      • Mumm-Ra

        It was cool seeing them have fun. It was close to what they thought was the end of the world and they still made the best of it.

  • paulmdoro

    Good list, but no way is Silence of the Lambs vastly superior to Manhunter. I’d argue the latter is the better film. Michael Mann is a better director than Jonathan Demme, Tom Noonan is terrifying, and the finale is spectacular.

  • Oswald did not act alone

    I agree with all of them except SCREAM 2. To me it just didn’t work. Loved F13part2 and part4. Part 3 always felt like the film that ruins a great trilogy.

    F13 was awesome, but most people are truly confused by the ending. Jason – the boy – does not jump out of the water. That’s a dream. Jason would’ve been full grown by the time his mother was killed. Many years had passed.

    Think about it. Part 2 opens immediately after the events of Part 1. The girl is, as she tells her mom, just trying to move on with her life. Jason is clearly an adult when he stalks the woman in her apt. The Mom’s head in the fridge hasn’t decomposed nearly as much as when the next time we see it with Jenny.

    Part 3 goes awry. Enjoyable, but not nearly as good.

    Part 4 got them back on track. You could watch part 1,2 & 4 and have a great trilogy.

  • Darren Holland

    Blade 1 was imo slightly better than 1. CGI aint everything…I like the rawness of part 1 but both were excellent…Terminator i disagree because i wanted sarah connors character dead…i wasnt rooting for humans with her around and part one was famous for a long time with the original “i’ll be back and fuck you asshole” Plus you didnt know when it was gonna end as he would not die in the first film.

  • Darren James Seeley

    Filmwise, Silence was not a “sequel” to Manhunter. If it were, you would not have gotten Red Dragon. Also, Hellbound isn’t as good as the first Hellraiser. Nice props to Friday The 13th p2 and Devil’s Rejects. I’d put in Phantasm II, Ginger Snaps 2 or Final Destination 2

  • Panic1

    wtf are they talking about? Why is Terminator and Aliens on the list? Those are Sci-fi only. Sci-fi is the complete opposite of horror. Also silence of the lambs is not horror at all, its a thriller. The Devils Rejects is a physiological thriller…not a horror film what so ever, the first one on the other hand was more of a horror film.

    • J Jett

      Panic1, your entire post (not including T2 which i agree w/ you on) is wrong. lol. sorry buddy. Sci-Fi most definitely can have horror elements in it. LAMBS and REJECTS are both horror even though you think they aren’t.

  • Dean Laxer Schuch

    First of all, thank you for making this list and putting so much effort into it! It was fun to read :-).
    However… I can’t get behind one entry…
    Nightmare 7???

    I’ve seen this movie quite a few times and I never understood why it was done in the first place. According to Craven himself, the main reason for him was the cash he was offered… OK…

    Pushing Freddy from celluloid to reality is a dangerous step. You crush the previous 6 movies by ignoring them, giving them no validity.
    And pretending an evil entity takes the form of a movie character is down right silly and not believable.
    I have to give Wes some credit for coming up with an original concept, but as the box office showed, people didn’t really appreciate that move…

    still better then the remake, though… but I guess that isn’t really hard to do, ey?

    • FunWithHorror

      You know? You may be the most polite person ever to disagree with me. Even though we don’t agree on New Nightmare, I think your argument is well thought out and it all comes down to opinion.

      • Dean Laxer Schuch

        Thanks, dude :-).
        It’s funny to watch how some people totally freak out about someone else’s opinion. And I think it’s easy to get lost in an argument^^… happens to me as well, thought ;-).
        Happy movie watching! :-)

      • zero2815

        Don’t worry you are right new nightmare is brilliant when he comes out of the closet is probably my favorite seen in all horror movies.

    • zero2815

      I am a diehard Freddy fan even have his glove hanging above my bed. Those three are films are the best in the series with new nightmare being my favorite. Wes was at the top of his game then but i all so love scream 4 so who am i to judge.

      • FunWithHorror

        I don’t hate Scream 4. It’s not my fave Craven effort. It ranks in the bottom half of the Scream series for me but I prefer it to a lot of the remakes that have hit the scene in the past five years.

  • J Jett

    great list! FRIDAY THE 13TH part 2 is my favorite entry and Amy’s Ginny is my all time fave final girl, so you know i’m liking this list! ELM ST. DREAM WARRIORS is my fave ELM ST. movie from that franchise and BLADE II is awesome! very good list!

    • ariessiren

      Friday 2 was actually pretty scary. Definitely my fave. Ginny was great and the end scene is terrifying

  • Craig Gilchrist

    Wait…you’re saying that James Cameron and his usual Space Marines plot is better than Alien? Are you freaking high? Ridley Scotts Alien is not only beautiful with its dark Giger visual styling but it’s freaking terrifying! “Oh but you know what’s better than that in terms of horror? Loads of people with big ass guns” piss off. Aliens pales in comparison to Alien and even Alien 3 is better than Aliens.

    • Hammerite

      Cameron himself said that Alien was a horror movie, Aliens was a war movie essentially.

      • Durden888

        Aliens was Cameron’s first (and only use) of space marines. Bad attempt to marginalize Cameron aside, Aliens is an absolutely terrifying action film (which is hard to do in action). The film not only recreates all the scary moments from Ridley’s classic, but does so in such a creative and fresh way that you don’t even know you essentially watching the same movie. Then you add in Weaver’s Academy Award nominated performance and you have a film that at the very least matches it’s predecessor.

        • Joe Boyd

          Only use of space marines? What do you call the macho boys and girls in Avatar? Oh…right…they are a private security force…that just happens to act like 80s era “space marines”. I admire Cameron’s investments in real life space exploration and the guts he showed in doing a deep sea dive on his own… but he is a terrible writer and nothing more than a competent action movie director. The praise that this guy gets is unbelievable.

          • Durden888

            I take it you worked out the space marine issue by your self? Otherwise, you are entitled to you opinion, but the guy has an Oscar, the top two highest grossing movies of all time, critical praise for most of his movies, and is responsible for some of the best genre films ever made. If you don’t like him, that’s fine, he’s not everyone’s cup of tea, but arguing that he’s not talented is going to be tough.

    • Joe Boyd

      Glad to see someone else feels this way. Aliens was an enormous letdown after Alien. Cameron took a beautiful, dark and disturbing film and followed it up with typical boring 80s action movie with “space marines”. I love it when one of the characters makes a silly “illegal alien” joke, because, you know, in a couple hundred years a hispanic would see be seen as an illegal alien.

      • Durden888

        Tipical? I’m hard pressed to find another 80′s action film that garnered a best actress Oscar nod. Let a lone an action sequel that got more Oscar nod’s than the original (and has a higher critical response on RT). I think you are over stating your case a bit.

  • ariessiren

    A truly great list

    • FunWithHorror

      Thank you.

  • Amber Garrett

    I can’t see the list :’(

  • Mark Turek

    Good list two I take issue with. The Terminator I believe is the better film, raw and doesn’t have the pop culture thing going with dialogue etc. take away the flashy cgi mercury terminator and it’s just another action movie. Tried watching it recently and it was kind of redundant and boring. Manhunter vs Silence of the lambs. I will take the cool calculating Brian Cox over Anthony Hopkins any day. Not taking anything away from Hopkins but watch the scene when Will Graham is interviewing Lector in his cell to me some of the best dialogue ever “Ever see blood on the moon Will, it appears quite black” also Lectors cool calculating way of getting Graham’s home address after he leaves. This is great cinema. I guess these are 2 of my favorite all time movies so I’m a little partial.