We take a look at some of the best movie franchises of recent years.

Since the trailer fest that were the ad breaks at the Super Bowl on Sunday, we have got very excited about upcoming movies; none more so than Fast and Furious 6. The franchise may have its flaws, but it is also car-tacular, ridiculous fun and that trailer? Wow. They drive a tank THROUGH ANOTHER TANK!! Count us in. Also, director Justin Lin has directed two other movies in the franchise as well as three episodes of Community. Done and done.
To keep us going until May, we decided to take a look back at some of the best movie franchises that gave us high quality movies over a number of years.

Back to the Future

Who can resist the idea of going back in time? Certainly not Marty McFly! Film lovers around the world fell in love with Marty and his complex and time paradoxical actions that threatened to erase his family from existence. There were some slightly odd aspects to the franchise however, not least Marty’s almost affair with his mum in the first film, but the BTTF franchise has the perfect mix of adventure and sci-fi with old-fashioned nostalgia thrown in for good measure.
It seems that everyone agrees that the third instalment in the franchise is the weakest, but there is one thing you have to remember; the flying, time travelling train.

Star Wars

Like most Star Wars fans, we are going to ignore the prequels; there is only one true trilogy, and that comprises of Star Wars (OK fine, A New Hope), The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi. The trilogy has spawned an entire universe, legions of fans and literally thousands of parodies; the best being Mel Brooks’ Spaceballs. The strength of the trilogy lay with relatable characters, a strong narrative and a properly evil villain. This contrasts nicely with the expansive, ambitious and adventurous universe that the films are set in.

James Bond

It is hard to ignore a franchise like James Bond. The first film was made 50 years ago, there have been 23 movies and six different actors to play the character (does this make Bond a Time Lord? Maybe). Originally based on Ian Fleming’s books, Bond is a super suave super spy who has saved the world from evil villains since 1962. The villains may have been toned down, and Bond himself made grittier and angrier, but the franchise still lives on and, if Skyfall is anything to go by, will be around for years to come.

Toy Story

When Disney announced that they had commissioned a feature length film completely animated on computer, the world’s interest was piqued. Toy Story went on to earn over $360 billion worldwide and spawned two sequels, each filled with Woody, Buzz and all the characters we have come to know and love. Toy Story has been inducted into the American National Film Registry for being culturally, historically or aesthetically significant, and the franchise has been known to make grown men cry.
Special mentions to the Lord of the Rings Trilogy, Friday the 13th, The Godfather films, all the Rocky films, the first three Indiana Jones films, The Dark Knight Trilogy, the first three Die Hard films, the Godfather Trilogy and the Alien franchise.
We are sure you have a favourite franchise. Is it on our list? Let us know!

Words: Brogen Hayes