With the current box office landscape dominated almost exclusively by sequels, arguing for even more sequels is bound to be a fairly unpopular opinion. Moviegoers have had enough superhero trilogies, they're frustrated because every single movie suddenly becomes a "franchise" by default now (there's anotherJourney to the Center of the Earth movie?), and I've personally lost track of how many Pirates of the Caribbean movies exist. Considering the fact that studios don't have a problem making another Jason Bourne movie despite the fact that Jason Bourne isn't even in it, there's no reason to assume this trend will stop any time soon, either.
But I'm not looking for sequels just for the sake of making sequels. Some movies leave amazing little ideas completely unexplored, because sometimes there's just too much awesomeness to cram into one movie. That's what I'm talking about. Not sequels that could be made; sequels that should be made.
I don't have a lot of room in my brain for criticism on Brad Bird's directorial debut, The Iron Giant, because I absolutely love that movie, which is exactly why the only way I can improve it is by expanding it with a sequel. My single complaint about The Iron Giant is that I could have used more The Iron Giant.
If you haven't seen it, The Iron Giant is an amazing animated feature about an enormous, metallic robot sent to Earth from some other planet bent on ruling or otherwise destroying the world. The Giant, voiced by Vin Diesel, was originally programmed by his alien creators for war and mayhem and was, by all accounts, completely unstoppable.
"Hi, my name is John Irongiantington, and I'm made of guns!"
Thanks to the help of a lovable young Earth boy, the Iron Giant miraculously overcomes his programming, learns the value of human life and settles on a life of protecting and preserving humans, instead of crushing them all with his hundreds and hundreds of guns. Or, his feet. He could easily crush us with feet (he's very tall).
We learn that the real enemy in Iron Giant is the paranoid United States government officials who, instead of trying to understand and communicate with the Giant, stoop to desperate, shady methods and go to extreme lengths to obliterate it, even if it means losing innocent lives in the process.
The Imaginary Sequel:
No, no, the real enemy is absolutely the alien race that sent an unstoppable war robot to destroy the Earth. The government officials went a little overboard, sure, but the fellas who loaded a metal skeleton full of lasers and machine guns? They're the bad guys.
Even if the Giant decides to commit himself to a life of peace, there's still a technologically superior race somewhere in the stars that, for no clear reason, wants to beat the absolute shit out of us, and they're not going anywhere.
Realistically speaking, a sequel to The Iron Giant would follow what happens when the alien warlords, assuming their original Giant was defeated, decide to send another, possibly more advanced Giant. They didn't have an adorable kid sidekick, so they never learned about how precious human life is, so they wouldn't stop at just one war machine; they'd send wave after wave of gun-filled robo-monsters until they reach their goal.
It would sort of be like Terminator 2; the first robot didn't work, so now the enemies have to send out a better robot. Except the new robot has to fight the old robot, who understands love thanks to a child sidekick and his hard-working single mom. Wow, holy shit, it's exactly like Terminator 2.
In Kill Bill, a woman, Beatrix Kiddo, gets shot to near death by a quartet of assassins and their assassin boss (her former lover), on her wedding day. They also steal her baby. She falls into a coma, eventually wakes up, and proceeds to hunt down and exact her revenge on the five people who wronged her. There's a lot of murder, a bunch of ninja fights and a pretty interesting though completely unnecessary deconstruction of Superman.
It's pretty awesome.
The first assassin that we see Kiddo kill is Vernita Green (Vivica A. Fox). Kiddo tracks her to her suburban, Pasadena home, fights her for a while, and ultimately throws a knife through her heart. This all unfortunately happens right in front of Vernita's 4-year-old daughter, Nikki.
This was absolutely not part of Kiddo's plan. When Kiddo realizes that Nikki was watching, she apologizes, explains that Nikki's mother had it coming, and says "When you grow up -- if you still feel raw about [this] -- I'll be waiting," (it's this scene).
That happens within the first 20minutes of Kill Bill: Volume I, and it's the last we see of Nikki ...
The Imaginary Sequel:
... until the future! I hope, anyway. A Kill Bill: Volume III that follows grown-up Nikki, another strong, scorned woman out for revenge is just begging to be made. Or, if it's not begging to be made, I am begging someone to make it.
KB:3 would be just as action-packed and exciting but with an added layer of moral ambiguity (moral ambiguity sells, right? Moral ambiguity is sexy, right?). The first two installments were about a clear protagonist (Kiddo), and a clear antagonist (Bill). There was no question that Bill was manipulative and underhanded, and there was no question that Kiddo was the gal you wanted to root for. Volume III would show us that things aren't that clear cut, because nothing ever is. It would be a Kill Bill to make us think about stuff.
But with sword fights, too.
The audience already loves Kiddo, the badass, strong-willed woman who doesn't know the meaning of taking shit. Of course we want her to win; she's Medea. The audience will also probably like grown-up Nikki, the hardened, similarly strong woman who had to watch her parent get murdered, right in front of her. We want her to win, too; she's Lady Batman.
Who's the "good guy" in that fight? Who should win? It's not an easy answer. This movie would have all of the badass ridiculousness of a Quentin Tarantino with all of the interesting complexity of ... like, "life," I guess.
Also? Kill Bill III would be Batman versus Medea, you guys!