25. Spider-Man 2 (2004)
> Original in franchise: Spider-Man (2002)
> IMDb user rating: 7.3/10 (sequel), 7.3/10 (original)
> Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer score: 93% (sequel), 90% (original)
> Rotten Tomatoes audience score: 82% (sequel), 67% (original)
Sam Raimi returned to the director’s chair for this beloved sequel, in which Spider-Man (Tobey Maguire) squares off against Doctor Otto Octavius (Alfred Molina). It was a critical and commercial benchmark for the superhero sub-genre before films such as “Iron Man” and “The Dark Knight” came along.
24. X-Men: First Class (2011)
> Original in franchise: X-Men (2000)
> IMDb user rating: 7.7/10 (sequel), 7.4/10 (original)
> Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer score: 86% (sequel), 82% (original)
> Rotten Tomatoes audience score: 87% (sequel), 83% (original)
From the director of “Kingsman: The Secret Service” came this thrilling prequel, which takes viewers back to the early days of the X-Men. Against the backdrop of the Cold War, future foes Charles Xavier (James McAvoy) and Erik Lensherr (Michael Fassbender) unite against a formidable enemy.
23. From Russia with Love (1963)
> Original in franchise: Dr. No (1962)
> IMDb user rating: 7.4/10 (sequel), 7.2/10 (original)
> Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer score: 95% (sequel), 95% (original)
> Rotten Tomatoes audience score: 84% (sequel), 82% (original)
The second James Bond film was shot on twice the budget as its iconic predecessor, “Dr. No.” Its action-packed set pieces, casual misogyny, and crafty gadgets would remain franchise stalwarts for decades to come. This time around, Agent 007 (Sean Connery) must retrieve a precious encryption device from the evil organization SPECTRE.
22. The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (2013)
> Original in franchise: The Hunger Games (2012)
> IMDb user rating: 7.5/10 (sequel), 7.2/10 (original)
> Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer score: 90% (sequel), 84% (original)
> Rotten Tomatoes audience score: 89% (sequel), 81% (original)
Hunger Games victors Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) and Peeta Mellark (Josh Hutcherson) are thrust back into the arena in this blockbuster sequel. “This is Empire Strikes Back stuff. It has that second Star Wars movie’s kick of confidence,” wrote critic Wesley Morris for Grantland.
21. Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (2014)
> Original in franchise: Rise of the Planet of Apes (2011)
> IMDb user rating: 7.6/10 (sequel), 7.5/10 (original)
> Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer score: 90% (sequel), 82% (original)
> Rotten Tomatoes audience score: 88% (sequel), 77% (original)
The second installment of the rebooted “Planet of the Apes” franchise put director Matt Reeves behind the camera for the first time in the series. In a world where intelligent apes and desperate humans coexist, trouble brews between the two primate species.
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