MOST POPULAR GALLERIES OF 2007: EW names the best of the nearly unwatchable Part Twos. We dredged the bottom of the sequel swamp to bring you this list
Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace
Credit: Star Wars: Episode I-The Phantom Menance: © & TM Lucasfilm Ltd.

No one ever sets out to make a bad movie. But it happens. A lot. Especially when there’s a 2, a III, or an Electric Boogaloo in the title. Hollywood’s mania for sequels is a relatively new development. Sure, there was a string of Thin Man comedies back in the ’30 and ’40s — not to mention the ongoing B-movie shenanigans of Charlie Chan, Abbott and Costello, and Dracula, Blacula, and Scott Bakula. But never has the impulse to wring more something out of nothing been so craven and commonplace as it is right now.

Stars generally skip the inevitably cruddy sequels. And when they do crawl back for sloppy seconds, their heart never seems to be in it. That’s because sequels, as a general rule, blow. But some are so ill-conceived, so cynically calculated, and so aggressively inept that they need to be called out and held accountable in the public square. Or, in this case, Entertainment Weekly. Hence our list of the 25 Worst Sequels Ever Made. But before we kick off the countdown of caca, a quick word on our criteria. First, we looked at how steep a sequel’s drop-off in quality was from the original. Then we weighed how utterly unnecessary the sequel was. You’re probably thinking, ”Yeah, but some sequels are so bad they’re good!” Those aren’t on this list. These movies are so absolutely bad their badness can be measured only in Kelvin degrees. Finally, we factored in a certain intangible stankitude — a sort of je ne sais crap that makes a film so god-awful you wish there were a cinematic Hague where it could be tried. Until such a court is convened, however, all we can do is offer our testimony against these 25 offenders. We hope you have more fun reading about them than we had watching them.