Oh, the dreaded sequel. For a while, it was the loathed S-word -- an inevitable drop in quality, almost always revealing an increasing degree of cinematic laziness. But then came the aughts. Not only did we find the S-word replaced with the dreaded R-word (remake/reboot ... take your pick), but we also got a slice of something good. This decade brought some impressive sequels that challenged the well-established notion that continuing a story and revisiting beloved characters would be a bad thing. And now, as the decade wraps up, it's time to rank them.

Compiling the best sequels of the decade is not the most harrowing task out there. My fellow writers have that honor, shuffling through hundreds of films to pick out a few mere handfuls, but the sequel list does elicit questions. For example: What do you do when you desperately want a comedy sequel to be on the list, but you really don't like the best choice of the bunch? Should you consider the film's box office success? What about installments in a series? There's so much to consider...

What follows are the best and most successful sequels and series installments (they must have love here!) that the aughts have brought us. Of course, this is the opinion of one mere writer, so dig in, and as always, be sure to comment with your own picks.