NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- The old saying about "death and taxes" as the only two constants in our universe needs to be updated to "death, taxes and movie sequels." It's become inevitable in today's Hollywood that if a movie is even moderately successful, then a sequel or two or more is not far behind it. And if the movie is a box office hit, then a sequel becomes less of a probability and more of a guarantee.
Sometimes movie studios just can't leave well enough alone. Sometimes Hollywood churns out sequels that are inferior to the original. Sometimes studios produce sequels that simply don't need to exist because the original films were so complete or because they waited more than a decade to continue the story. And sometimes we get a sequel that completely desecrates the first movie because it is so mind-numbingly terrible.
With that in mind, let's take a plunge together into the absolute worst of the worst with the 10 worst movie sequels ever made. For this list, we're sticking only with direct sequels. Third movies or later in a series are out of contention. Take a deep breath, we're going under...
10) Speed 2: Cruise ControlThe first Speed movie was a surprisingly enjoyable, and surprisingly commercially successful, action flick in 1994. Sandra Bullock, Dennis Hopper, Joe Morton, Jeff Daniels and, of course, Keanu Reeves (whoa...) provided us with some thrills as Bullock and Reeves try to survive inside a bus that cannot drop below 50 mph or a bomb will go off and kill everyone inside the vehicle. So how did they follow up this high-octane thrill ride? They set the sequel on a cruise ship. A large, slow cruise ship. Keanu Reeves wisely decided not to return for the sequel, so his presence, welcome in the first movie, was missed in the second. Instead, we had a new love interest for Bullock's character that few people cared about and a plot that hardly excited anybody. Besides, to quote George Costanza, "How many people do you lose on a normal cruise? 30? 40?" The sequence toward the end of the film in which the ship crashes into Saint Martin cost almost 25% of the film's $110 million budget and set records at the time for most expensive stunt. So there's that.