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Very few movies in the history of cinema have reached the sixth film in a series -- though the percentage is far higher when you're talking about horror movies. And though you'd expect that these movies to be watered down versions of the originals, as you'll see in this list of memorable sixth entries, this is the point where franchises regain their stride:
Leprechaun: Back 2 Tha Hood
Leprechaun has always been the poor man's horror series, striving on despite merciless teasing by everyone from Wayne's World, to... well, everyone. It's probably the first film, ever, that was a sequel to a movie that was already part of a movie series. Though it's the sixth Leprechaun film over-all, it's actually a sequel to Leprechaun in the Hood (number 5), and a prequel to the fourth film in the series Leprechaun 4: In Space. (Though, to be fair, that's only because Leprechaun 4 takes place in the future.) Got it? But why is it so good? Because the Leprechaun doesn't use magic, or rhyme. You know, the only stuff Leprechaun does?
Friday the 13th Part VI: Jason Lives
Come on, you knew Jason couldn't stay in Hell forever, right? A rather silly resurrection method (Jason's dead body gets hit by lightning), actually works as a nice metaphor for the series, as Part VI was lauded for injecting some badly needed humor into the series. It also worked nicely into continuity, returning to Crystal Lake, once again. Add in some memorable kill scenes, and you have what some consider to be the best movie in the entire series. Yup, even better than the original.
Freddy's Dead: The Final Nightmare
Again, probably not spoiling anything to say that Freddy doesn't really stay dead, but this film brought the series to a satisfying close, and set the stage for the genre-bending New Nightmare. Deftly playing on Freddie's obsession with killing teens, the film posits that the gloved one (no, not Michael Jackson), has killed every child in the town of Springwood, Ohio, turning it into a shuttered wasteland of crazy people. Through various twists and turns, the movie ties into nearly every previous film before ending in one of the most spectacular end battles in slasher history.
Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers