Follow TV Tropes


Dueling Works / Film
aka: Dueling Movies

Go To

    open/close all folders 

    Action-Adventure (non-Sci-Fi) 
Initiators Followers Description Implementation Winner?
The MGM Tarzan films starring Johnny Weissmuller The New Adventures of Tarzan (1934) Tarzan creator Edgar Rice Burroughs, not happy with the MGM series, bankrolled an independent Tarzan film serial. The New Adventures of Tarzan was Truer to the Text, with a Tarzan that did not speak in You No Take Candle English. Decisive victory for MGM. The New Adventures was a Troubled Production due to the decision to shoot on location in Guatemala. Then MGM pressured theaters into refusing to run the new serial. Burroughs signed a new deal with MGM and the Weissmuller films ran for another 14 years.
Treasure Island (1934) The Count of Monte Cristo (1934) 1934 released swashbuckling adventure films based on classic pieces of literature that helped revitalize interest in the genre.   Both were successful with critics and at the box office. But Treasure Island won out in both categories.
The Prince And The Pauper (1937) The Prisoner of Zenda (1937) Both were swashbuckling adventure films released in 1937 based on classic stories that center around a to-be-crowned king meeting his physical double which spirals into political strife for control of the country.   Both were success and generally well regarded. However, whilst The Prince and the Pauper made more money, The Prisoner of Zenda received stronger reviews.
Gunga Din (1939) The Four Feathers (1939) 1939 released adventure films that center around British military men venturing into colonial land where they must contend with a dangerous group of "natives" looming over.   The Four Feathers does marginally edge out its competitor in terms of reviews, but Gunga Din managed to win at the box office. Each is considered a classic adventure film, and are well remembered enough to where many would consider it a tie.
The Sea Hawk (1940) The Mark of Zorro (1940) 1940 released swashbuckler adventure films. Each in some ways seem to be trying to channel Errol Flynn's own The Adventures of Robin HoodThe Sea Hawk with Flynn himself, Zorro by casting Basil Rathbone and Eugene Palette in pretty much the same roles they played in Robin Hood Near impossible to tell. Each has a 100% on Rotten Tomatoes and made at least 2 million at the box office.
The Three Musketeers (1948) Adventures of Don Juan (1948) 1948 swashbuckling adventure films based upon classic pieces of literature/lore that center about heroes who fight to stop a high-ranking official from finishing some nefarious plot that would include going to war with England. The two films came out within less than two months of each other.   On the whole The Three Musketeers seems to be the more well remembered of the two. And whilst both made it into the Top 10 grossing films of the year, 2nd and 9th respectively, The Three Musketeers wins it out in how it made almost a full million more a the box office... and back then, $1m wasn't the chump change it is today. Don Juan has still has its devoted fans, though.
Two-Minute Warning (1976) Black Sunday (1977) Two films about a terrorist attack at the Super Bowl The former is about a sniper at the Super Bowl as a SWAT team tries to take him out. The latter is about a foreign terrorist group who plan to crash a blimp full of explosives to kill the President attending the Super Bowl. Both films were released within a year of each other, and were at the tail end of the Disaster Movie craze of the 70's. The former film was nominated for an Academy Award for Film Editing. Black Sunday is considered the better of the films, directed by John Frankenheimer, while Two Minute Warning was directed by Larry Peerce, a TV director for such shows as The Ghost Busters (the Larry Storch kid's show, not the Bill Murray film).
Iron Eagle (1986) Top Gun (1986) Two 1986 films about cocky young pilots proving their mettle. The former is about a guy on a secret, unauthorized mission to rescue an Air Force pilot dad trapped behind enemy lines. The latter has its protagonist going through Navy training, encountering love, rivalry, and loss along the way to becoming a hero. Top Gun was a Summer Blockbuster, the biggest hit of its year, and coronated Tom Cruise as a true-blue movie star. It is still fondly remembered today. By comparison Iron Eagle, which came out first, only grossed a few million more than its budget in theaters. That said, perhaps because of the popularity of its dueling movie, it did well enough on video ($11 million in rentals according to the Other Wiki) that it had three B-Movie sequels through 1995. Top Gun wins, but Iron Eagle gets points for making its own small success story.
The Lethal Weapon Series (1987) The Die Hard Series (1988) Popular cop action film franchises that started with a first installment released in the later 1980's that is considered a seminal film in the genre. Ironically enough, both films were also set around Christmas time, though their releases were about a year apart. It is also notable that both films, at least for their first couple of installments, were scored by Michael Kamen. A real ironic note is that Bruce Willis, the actor of John McClane the star of the Die Hard films, was actually considered for the role of Martin Riggs before it subsequently went to Mel Gibson.

Another fun note is that in an early scene of Die Hard 2 one can see an ad for Lethal Weapon 2 on a magazine.

It is also interesting to note that the script for Die Hard with a Vengeance had started out written to be an original standalone piece called Simon Says. However, that film was ultimately not made but they continued trying to find a way to use the script. At one point before being rewritted into a Die Hard movie it was at one stage reworked to be an installment of the Lethal Weapon series.
Most of the films in question got either mixed if not outright positive reviews. The highest rated of them is the original Die Hard, followed pretty closely by the first Lethal Weapon, with that film's first sequel being the highest reviewed of all the follow-ups in question. Die Hard 2-4 each while not without their detractors are generally well liked, whilst Lethal Weapon 3 and 4 are more divisive. However A Good Day to Die Hard is by a significant margin the least well reviewed. Financially it is close, but each installment of the Die Hard franchise managed to outdo its Lethal Weapon counterpart. With all that in mind at the end of the day it would appear that the Die Hard franchise is the ultimate victor.
Robin Hood (1991) Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves (1991) 1991 films retelling the famous thief of British folklore. Prince of Thieves was a Hollywood project with then-bankable Kevin Costner leading the cast. The other was a low-profile British film with Uma Thurman as Maid Marian and a low-profile cast (Patrick Bergin was Robin). Fox's version was released first, but went straight to TV in the States, allegedly to avoid competition with Costner's. Prince of Thieves was a monster hit and the one most remember; Robin Hood was a failure even in Britain.
Under Siege (1992) Passenger 57 (1992) 1992 released "Die Hard on an X" films, the former on a battleship and the latter on a plane, that star at the time popular martial artist action stars and came out within a month of each other.   Under Siege takes it. Though it had a higher production budget, it still made more than three times the profit at the box office. It also had a far more positive critical reception, getting mostly positive reviews in contrast to the mixed-to-negative reception Passenger 57 got. And the reception from the general audience does not look much different. Notably, Under Siege actually also managed to get a sequel.
Speed (1994) Blown Away (1994) 1994 released action thrillers that see a good cop go up against a mad bomber in a race against time, with a major plot device of needing to sustain an action (keeping a bus above 50 MPH, typing continuously into a computer) to keep a bomb from going off. They came out within less than a month off each other. Speed was deemed as "Die Hard on a Bus" (aside from the opening in an elevator and the closer in a subway). Blown Away has a deeper plot featuring The Troubles. Speed blew past its opponent, making more than ten times as much at the box office, receiving significantly better reviews, and remaining in the public consciousness to this day. It notably also wound up getting a sequel. Though that's... another story.
Terminal Velocity (1994) Drop Zone (1994) Films based around Special Forces skydivers, both released in late 1994. Drop Zone was supposed to be released first, but reshoots ended up delaying it until after Terminal Velocity was released. Both films also starred actors who have experienced personal trouble in later years: Charlie Sheen was the star of Terminal Velocity, while Wesley Snipes was the lead for Drop Zone. Neither of them did particularly well in terms of reviews, but Drop Zone at least broke even on its worldwide box-office and VHS rentals. Terminal Velocity only grossed around two-thirds of what Drop Zone made, while costing even more to produce, making it indisputably the loser.
Double Dragon (1994) Street Fighter (1994) 1994 martial arts action films based upon video game properties.   Both are rather notorious, but Street Fighter at least was a success at the box office and has a cult following from those who consider it a so-bad-it's-good sort of guilty pleasure whilst Double Dragon can't even boast that.
Under Siege 2: Dark Territory (1995) Sudden Death (1995) 1995 released "Die Hard on an X" films. (On a train and at a sports arena respectively) that star popular martial arts action stars of the time. Playing men caught at the wrong place at the wrong time, and have the added issue of child family members of theirs being caught up in the situation as well (Casey Ryack's niece and Darren McCord's own children).   With both critics and audiences Sudden Death has higher ratings, but Under Siege 2 won at the box office by approximately $40 million. Hollywood being what it is, that probably gives it the win.
Cutthroat Island (1995) Muppet Treasure Island (1996) Swashbuckling pirate films that showed up within two months of each other after a long while of the genre being dormant. One a straightforward iteration the other being a quasi-parody with the Muppets.   Whilst it seems to have its following, Cutthroat Island was a notorious box office bomb and got less than stellar reviews. Muppet Treasure Island whilst not a groundbreaking financial hit got moderate success on that front and received more positive reviews from critics.
Executive Decision (1996) The Rock (1996) 1996 released action films whose stories are of the "Die Hard on an X" mold (noticing a pattern here yet?) — on a plane for the former and a prison (Alcatraz Island in fact) for the latter. Both films' central characters are not traditional action-hero types but desk/office type of guys thrust into an extremely dangerous field situation, that isn't helped when a tragedy hits their military team at the start. Also notable is that the big threat in both films is a deadly gas/nerve agent. One pairs two tough guys, Kurt Russell and Steven Seagal (though the latter dies early). Another gets an Odd Couple, Nicolas Cage in his first actioner and an already 66 Sean Connery. Even though it had a bigger budget, The Rock still won out at the box office with more than twice the gross of Executive Decision. Neither was considered a masterpiece by critics, and whilst both got mixed-to-positive reviews The Rock was still a bit higher. And on places like Rotten Tomatoes and IMDB it however seems to be ahead by a good margin.
Con Air (1997) Air Force One (1997) 1997 released action films that play out as a "Die Hard on a plane" scenario that were released only about a month apart. One reunites Nicolas Cage and The Rock producer Jerry Bruckheimer. The other has Harrison Ford as the POTUS and director Wolfgang Petersen. Air Force One had an only marginally higher budget, and even with that in account it still won at the box office by almost an extra $100 million; it also scored higher with critics. Con Air does have better viewer ratings, though, according to sites like Rotten Tomatoes and IMDb.
The Man in the Iron Mask (1998) The Mask of Zorro (1998) 1998 released swashbuckling adventure films based around older versions of classic heroes taking upon younger students as they seek to try and take down a corrupt man of power.   The Man in the Iron Mask has a following, but Mask of Zorro got stronger reviews and did well enough to merit the production of a sequel.
The 13th Warrior (1999) Beowulf (1999) Setting Update revisions of the Old English epic poem, starring European action stars whose first language isn't English (Antonio Banderas and Christopher Lambert, respectively). Despite the shared origin, each adaptation is the diametrical opposite of the other. Warrior is a blockbuster directed by genre's classic John McTiernan and based on a Michael Crichton novel that retains the early Medieval setting and the poem's original characters fates and personalities, but adds a new viewpoint protagonist and removes most fantastic elements from the story. Beowulf is an original script written and shot by unknowns on a shoestring budget, that moves the setting to an unexplained, Mad Max-esque post-apocalyptic future and changes the main characters fates and relationships, yet also keeps the fantastical element and even expands it (a "Science Fantasy", as the creators put it). Both films bombed and gathered vicious critics, but Warrior was the greater loser because people expected more from it due to the larger budget and names involved, becoming a Creator Killer for both McTiernan and Crichton. Nevertheless, the opposite paths of both films resumed after their release. The timeless appeal of Warrior helped make it Vindicated by Cable and become a Cult Classic to an extent, but its niche approach is unlikely to influence future films. Meanwhile, Beowulf's soundtrack and aesthetics (ironically the only thing critics loved about it) dated the film horribly fast and condemned it to public oblivion, but unexpectedly, many of its characterization changes were imitated by the next big-budget ''Beowulf'' adaptation.
Resident Evil Film Series (2002) Underworld series (2003) Both series revolve around an Empowered Badass Normal Action Girl protagonist and her struggles against various supernatural foes. They are both known for their highly stylized cinematography. Both franchises moved to 3-D with their respective fourth entries. Oh, and the lead actresses of each franchise (Kate Beckinsale and Milla Jovovich) later married the respective directors of each series' first film (Len Wiseman and Paul W. S. Anderson). Underworld is an Urban Fantasy story about the war between vampires and werewolves, while Resident Evil is a Zombie Apocalypse story adapted from the video game series. Critically, both series tend to be regarded as cinematic junk food, though Underworld wins by a small margin given that the RE films also have a hatedom from fans of the games in addition to critics (plus the first two movies in that series both made Roger Ebert's most hated list). Commercially, on the other hand, RE wins hands-down, having grossed over twice as much money as the Underworld films.

The real winner is Screen Gems, which produces both series and makes lots of money from both of them. They never had to compete with one another at the box office, with each franchise's films usually coming out in alternating years — excepting 2012 (when they were still released nine months apart). This inexplicably changed in 2016 when each franchise released a film within a month of the other, marking the first time this trope has applied as an actual "duel."
The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen (2003) Van Helsing (2004) Characters from multiple stories team up to save or destroy the world. Jekyll and Hyde feature in both. ''LXG'''s team comes from classic, mostly public-domain stories while Van Helsing's monsters are all from Universal Studios. (Fun fact: the original plan for Van Helsing was a direct sequel/prequel to Bram Stoker's Dracula, but Anthony Hopkins was too old). Both did all right at the box office, but were ravaged by critics, and a sequel to either is highly unlikely. League is a bigger failure though, as the experience filming it convinced Sean Connery to retire from Hollywood, and not many of the other players in that film came out not in pieces.
Underworld: Evolution (2006) Ultraviolet (2006) (2006) Comic book movie sans an actual comic (Ultraviolet even starts with fake comics that the film's based on). A vampire war/rebellion led by a shapely Action Girl. It seems that most of Ultraviolet's vampire references (the heroine and her pals are infected with a virus that mimics vampirism; the MacGuffin is a possible cure) were cut out so as to distance itself from Underworld, which led to some audience confusion. Underworld: Evolution did well enough to continue the franchise with at least two more sequels. Ultraviolet, while visually striking, didn't do well enough to start its franchise.
Ninja Assassin (2009) Ninja (2009) Movies about badass ninjas. Ninja Assassin was produced by the creators of The Matrix and starts Korean pop star Rain, while Ninja was directed by director Isaac Florentine and was a Direct to Video release. While Ninja Assassin did beat Ninja, the latter is considered a decent action movie on its own merits. It even got a sequel in 2014. The sequel, Ninja II: Shadow of a Tear is called either, a Surprisingly Improved Sequel or Even Better Sequel to its predecessor. Ninja Assassin hasn't gotten a sequel yet, because it barely got back its budget (A budget of $40 million with a box office of $60 million).
The A-Team (2010) The Losers (2010)

The Expendables (2010)
Capital-"A" action movies adapted from other mediums about rag tag groups of government agents who come together to clear their name: The former is The Film of the Series. The latter: An adaptation of Andy Diggle and Jock's re-imagining of a classic WWII DC comic as a group of Special Forces operatives during the War on Terror. The Losers basically is The A-Team, there's never been any doubt or denial that it played a major role in its re-imagining, the timing of the film releases are just unfortunate. The A-Team soundly trounced The Losers at the box office, grossing more in its opening weekend than The Losers in its full run; however, The A-Team had an underwhelming run of its own, which illustrates how badly The Losers flopped. If The Expendables is counted, however, then it's a clean win by knockout.
Machete (2010) The Expendables (2010) Both films feature outrageous special effects and stunts to tell a barely-there story and feature numerous oldschool actors returning to type of roles that made them famous, gleefully employing the Nostalgia Filter all the while. Machete is a loving homage to over-the-top '70s exploitation films directed by Robert Rodriguez and featuring a star-studded cast; Expendables has the participation of a laundry list of '80s action stars led by Sylvester Stallone (who directed, wrote and plays the lead). The Expendables. Though Machete enjoyed a slight critical edge, the The Expendables had a significantly higher box office gross and made a significantly greater impact on pop culture.
Tomorrow: When the War Began (2010) Red Dawn (2012) Foreign armies invade small-town America/Australia, and a group of teenagers take to the hills to fight back guerrilla-style. Red Dawn is a remake of the classic 1984 Cold War action movie, updating the villains from the Soviet Union to the People's Republic of China (or North Korea) and moving the action from Colorado to Washington state. Tomorrow when the War Began is an adaptation of the first book of an Australian Young Adult series published in the '90s that, while hugely popular in Australia (to the point of being compared to Harry Potter in cultural influence), never caught on overseas. Tomorrow got better reviews, but Red Dawn (2012) made more money. Neither turned a profit.
The Raid: Redemption (2011) Dredd (2012) Badass super-cops raid high-rise apartment blocks controlled by drug lords in order to bring them to justice. The Raid is an Indonesian martial arts film, while Dredd is a Hollywood action film that marks the second theatrical adaptation of the 2000 AD comic book Judge Dredd after the 1995 film starring Sylvester Stallone tanked. While The Raid came first,note  rumor has it that the makers of the film borrowed its plot from an early, leaked version of the Dredd script. Both films were acclaimed by both critics and action buffs as capital-A action movies with little in the way of pretension. Box office-wise, while Dredd made more money than The Raid, it was a Box Office Bomb due to its substantially higher budget, with many observers viewing it as an indictment of the idea that Internet and Comic-Con buzz alone could power a film to success. Meanwhile, The Raid's meager (£1.1 million) budget gave it a very low bar to clear.
Olympus Has Fallen (2013) White House Down (2013) 2013 "Die Hard in the White House" movies about a Secret Service agent (Gerard Butler or Channing Tatum) fighting to save the President (Aaron Eckhart or Jamie Foxx) from (mostly) terrorists. Tonally the two films are rather different: OHF goes for drama while WHD has a greater focus on comedic moments. Eckhart remains a hostage through most of his film, whereas Foxx and Tatum work together in a Wunza Plot. Another key difference is The Plan for taking the White House: OHF does it from outside-in, while WHD does it from inside-out. OHF and WHD got similar reviews (48% for OHF, 50% for WHD on Rotten Tomatoes) and opening weekends ($30M vs $25M). WHD won out in worldwide box office gross, while OHF won in the domestic US box office. Since OHF made a profit (due to a much lighter budget) and resulted in sequels (yes, plural), it comes out on top.
Bullet to the Head (2012) The Last Stand (2013)

Parker (2013)
Genre Throwbacks to '80s Rated M for Manly action vehicles, released within a month of one another in winter 2012/2013. The Last Stand stars Arnold Schwarzenegger, was marketed as his big return to leading man status, and is directed by rising Korean filmmaker Kim Ji-woon, while Bullet to the Head stars Sylvester Stallone fresh off the success of The Expendables. Finally, Parker stars Jason Statham and is based on Donald E. Westlake's book series. The Last Stand received somewhat more positive (if still mixed) reviews than Bullet to the Head and Parker, but all three films bombed at the box office - The Last Stand and Parker grossed about the same, $48 million, and recouped their budgets (though Statham's movie was meager $35 million, $10M less than the other), while Bullet to the Head tanked hard with $21 m on a $55 m budget. Between the failures of these films and that of Dredd the prior year, many observers concluded that, The Expendables aside, "macho" action movies had lost their allure with moviegoers.
Jack Reacher (2012) Parker (2013) Adaptations of a book series featuring Anti-Hero badass protagonists with a Sherlock Scan and a vendetta against someone who quite recently wronged them. Right out the gate both studios signed on big name actors in the title roles (Tom Cruise and Jason Statham, respectively). Also each hero teams up with an ordinary, hardworking single woman who serves as The Watson. And funnily enough, both movies had their release dates pushed back for innocent (and unrelated) reasons. Critics gave both movies middle-of-the-road reviews, with high forties on Metacritic. But in terms of box office, Reacher had five times the take of Parker. It also got a sequel in late 2016.
The November Man (2014)

The Equalizer (2014)
3 Days to Kill (2014)

John Wick (2014)
2014 films involving middle-aged veteran or retired operatives getting pulled back into their former jobs, played by similarly aged actors Pierce Brosnan, Denzel Washington, Kevin Costner and Keanu Reeves. November Man and Equalizer are adaptions of a preceding series (a book series for the former and a television series for the latter), while Three Days and John Wick are original properties. Follow the Leader was in effect, as the success of 2009 action thriller Taken reinvented a 57-year old Liam Neeson into a leading action star. The Equalizer took the win at the box office by making 192 million dollars, while John Wick proved to be a Sleeper Hit that won critically, bringing about a Career Resurrection for Keanu Reeves and making 88 million. The Equalizer and John Wick would go on to spawn successful sequels. The November Man and Three Days to Kill came out the losers in this fight. While critics were harsher toward Three Days, it made more money than November Man (52 million vs 34 million, respectively).
Wyrmwood: Road of the Dead (2014) Turbo Kid (2015) Two genre-blending homages to late 70's-early 80's cinema, both of which have been described as "Mad Max meets X", with X being a Zombie Apocalypse for Wyrmwood and BMX Bandits for Turbo Kid. Both films have been noted for their significant levels of violence, as well as deliberate use of implausible elements under enforced Rule of Cool. Interestingly, these films both received their U.S. debut in 2015, the same year that the real Mad Max returned with Mad Max: Fury Road. Hard to know for certain, as both went direct-to-digital in most countries. Which film has been purchased or viewed the most is unknown. On Rotten Tomatoes, Turbo Kid received slightly better reviews than Wyrmwood, though both films received strong praise. IMDb reviewers have also favored Turbo Kid over Wyrmwood. So while Turbo Kid has the edge, it would seem that these two Mad Max homages were both largely overshadowed by Fury Road.
Mad Max: Fury Road (2015) The Transporter Refueled (2015) 2015 action films centering around a "road warrior" of sorts that will be the fourth film of their respective franchises. Both franchises had lain dormant for a while. Both films feature returning screenwriters but have recast their lead roles (Tom Hardy replacing Mel Gibson as Max Rockatansky, and Ed Skrein replacing Jason Statham as Frank Martin).   In terms of pure profit, both films made about half again their budgets. Other than that, Mad Max ran away with this one. Fury Road was the highest-rated movie of 2015 on Rotten Tomatoes, is on the site's Top 100 films of all time, and was nominated for an Academy Award For Best Picture, which never happens to summer blockbusters or action movies. Refueled lacked anywhere near that amount of critical applause, and in raw numbers grossed less than 10% of what Fury Road did.

Initiators Followers Description Implementation Winner?
The French Connection (1971) Dirty Harry (1971) 1971 crime thrillers about a hard-boiled inner city cop who has little regard for the rules, but always gets results. Along the way, he gets into fistfights, gun battles, and car chases, pushing him to the brink of his endurance, amidst his increasingly-strained relationship with his superiors. These two films more-or-less codified the Cowboy Cop genre. The French Connection stars Gene Hackman tracking down a French drug smuggler, while Dirty Harry stars Clint Eastwood hunting a depraved serial killer. Both films attracted controversy at release for what some saw as "fascist" undertones, with Dirty Harry receiving protests by civil rights organizations. The French Connection won at the time due to massive success at the Oscars, including Best Picture and a Best Actor win for Hackman. It also took the edge over Dirty Harry commercially, earning 51 million dollars compared the 35 million Dirty Harry made. Despite losing this fight, history has been kind to Dirty Harry. Critics eventually warmed up to the film, and it became more influential in popular culture in no small part due to Memetic Mutation. Dirty Harry also spawned a series of five films while The French Connection only received one direct sequel.
Goodfellas (1990) The Godfather Part III 1990) 1990 released mafia crime films that came out two months apart. Ironically the film The Godfather is facing here has an alum from a previous Godfather film in a leading role as a crime boss. And that is, of course, Robert De Niro. Both films on the whole were successes, and big contenders at the Oscars. However, on the financial front The Godfather takes it, making about three times as much at the box office. However, in terms of reviews, whilst Godfather III has generally positive ratings, the ratings of Goodfellas are still noticeably higher. Goodfellas has, however, held up much, much better than Godfather III and is now considered a classic of the genre, often ranked up amongst the best films of all time alongside first two Godfather films ironically enough. Whilst Godfather III is more debated, in large part it would seem because it is often compared unfavorably to its predecessors which leads to it receiving more heat. And thus at the end of the day, Goodfellas would probably be considered the winner.
Casino (1995) Heat (1995) Acclaimed crime films that were released within a month of each other in the year 1995. Notably both films feature Robert De Niro in a leading role. Both are very popular with both critics and audiences, as shown on sites like Rotten Tomatoes where critically they received a close ratings from both groups with similar results on IMDB, with Heat beating it by a minute margin. That along with its higher box office gross edges out Heat to victory in this one.
Mulholland Falls (1996) L.A. Confidential (1997) Two neo-noir crime dramas set in 1950s L.A. with an All-Star Cast.   L.A. Confidential wins out. Mulholland Falls had caricatured acting, was too fixated on costumes and production design and overall wasn't well received by the audience. L.A. Confidential had denser characters, a complex but cogent screenplay, better action and was a commercial success.
Ocean's Eleven (2001) The Italian Job (2003) Remakes of movies about a crew of thieves pulling off a complicated heist against dangerous enemies. Both films were remakes of classic 1960s films. While both had good reviews, Ocean's Eleven was much more successful and spawned two sequels. The Italian Job's sequel is still in development hell.
The Black Dahlia (2006) Hollywoodland (2006) Highly stylized period crime pieces, set in Los Angeles and (loosely) based on real-life, high-profile deaths. Released within a week of one another.   The Black Dahlia received more attention before release and had a budget nearly quadruple Hollywoodland's; however, it received largely negative reviews and bombed at the box office, prompting director Brian De Palma to take a leave of absence from filmmaking. Hollywoodland was well-reviewed and turned a small profit.
The Girl Next Door (2007) An American Crime (2007) 2007 crime dramas with a slash of horror based on the real 1965 torture and murder of Sylvia Likens Girl, based on a 1989 novel, fictionalizes the story and moves the setting to the 1950s; Crime stays closer to the facts. Neither really. Despite its more high-profile cast (Elliot Page as Sylvia and Catherine Keener as her torturer), Crime failed to find a theatre distributor and was eventually aired in Showtime in 2008; it received three nominations to TV awards but was generally trashed by critics. If only for that, and because the critics are more divided in its case, Girl wins.
Death Sentence (2007) The Brave One (2007) 2007 vigilante movies about previously wimpy people on the hunt for criminals after they kill people close to them. (In Death Sentence Kevin Bacon's son dies. In The Brave One Jodie Foster's husband dies. Fittingly, the latter can be defined as Death Wish but with a woman, while the former is based off a novel written by the writer of Death Wish. Death Sentence was directed by James Wan while The Brave One was directed by Neil Jordan. The former leans more towards Gorn while the latter has the deaths spread out. The Brave One made more money and got better reviews than Death Sentence, but still fell short of its $70 million budget.
Wind River (2017) The Snowman (2017) 2017 murder mystery films set in snow-filled areas.   Wind River is the winner, as it received positive reviews from critics and was a box office success, grossing $33 million domestically against a $11 million budget, while The Snowman was critically panned and failed to even make back its budget, grossing only $6 million domestically against a $35 million budget.
Knives Out Parasite (2019) Darkly comedic crime thrillers from 2019 about the relationship between the rich and their personal servants. Knives Out was written and directed by Rian Johnson, boasts an All-Star Cast of Hollywood actors, and is an Affectionate Parody of the Cozy Mystery genre. Parasite, meanwhile, is a Korean film written and directed by Bong Joon-ho about a poor family seeking to rip off a rich one. Both films won critical acclaim and box-office success, and while Knives Out made more money (especially in the US), Parasite cleaned up at the Academy Awards that year, including becoming the first non-English-language film to win Best Picture.

Initiators Followers Description Implementation Winner?
Lambada (1990) The Forbidden Dance (1990) Projects from the former heads of Cannon Films focused on the lambada dance craze. Lambada was greenlit first in late 1989 for a May 1990 release. Then, The Forbidden Dance was greenlit for a release a month earlier. Eventually, both films ended up moving up and were released on the same day (Lambada had finished filming eleven days before release, The Forbidden Dance was finished a few weeks before). Neither won as both films flopped at the box office. Lambada made a little more money though.

Initiators Followers Description Implementation Winner?
The Day After (1983) Threads (1984) Made For TV Movies produced in the mid 1980s about the consequences of nuclear war on normal citizens. Day is set in the continental US state of Kansas and Missouri, while Threads takes place in the United Kingdom. Threads was made as a direct response to the American film. Also, while both movies depict a nuclear exchange, Threads was even more realistic than Day in just how horrifying such a scenario would be. Day was aware of this though, ending with a screen text amounting to "What you've just seen was horrible. However, this is only a toned-down depiction. The real consequences would be even worse." They both win. Both films received high critical acclaim, were popular with home audiences, and taught a significant part of the public the realities of nuclear warfare. Day even had an impact on Ronald Reagan to pursue nuclear disarmament; he reportedly broke down in tears after a private showing.
Twister (1996) Tornado! (1996)

Night of the Twisters (1996)
Yes, three films all dealing with tornadoes — Twister being a major Hollywood production, while the other two were made for TV movies. Twister was directed by Jan DeBont (of Speed fame) and co-written by Michael Crichton, while Tornado! was written by John Logan. Night of the Twisters was based on a novel which was Based on a True Story. Hollywood won with Twister grossing over $200 million. The other two faded into footnotes; however, Night of the Twisters was able to outlast Tornado! thanks to more repeats on television. Twister still gets more showings on TV while the others do not.
Dante's Peak (1997) Volcano (1997) Movies about volcanoes! The former is set in a small town, and is very loosely based on the Mt. St. Helens explosion. The latter is set in Los Angeles and is therefore much crazier in scale. As above, not exactly imitations, but these were both released around the same time and dueled each other with very similar plots. The former, incidentally, is considered notable for being one of the few popcorn disaster movies that actually tries for scientific accuracy. Surprisingly, Dante's Peak won, with $6 million more in box office receipts. Volcano gets the consolation prize of being shown on cable much more often. Heck, it's probably on right now somewhere! (Volcano does lose the duel as far as scientific accuracy goes, however.)
Deep Impact (1998) Armageddon (1998) Meteor-strike disaster movies. Neither films were imitations of each other per se, but they revolved around different reactions to the same idea, one more dramatic, the other more action-based. Amusingly, in an early screening of Deep Impact, Morgan Freeman is giving a speech in which he reassures his audience that life will go on after the meteor-hit, declaring, "There will be no armageddon." Too many viewers at the screening got the in-joke, however, and the uproarious laughter at what was meant as a dramatic scene induced the director to cut the line from the final print. This actually was an example of the height of the Disney/DreamWorks feud. (DreamWorks distributed Deep Impact with Paramount while Disney/Touchstone distributed Armageddon.) Although a few critics thought Deep Impact was the better film, including Disney's critics Siskel & Ebert (starting a trend for director Michael Bay, Armageddon was derided for scientific inaccuracy and being loud), Armageddon wins with better box office and the fact that more people are aware of Armageddeon years later, whilst Deep Impact is only known today for being released a week or so prior to Armageddeon and being that film Homestar Runner gives the DVD of to Strong Bad every Christmas. While Armageddon has a lower Rotten Tomatoes rating and is one of the movies on Roger Ebert's most hated list (he called it the worst film of the year on the show), that RT rating is still within range of Deep Impact (which still got a Thumbs Down from Ebert), plus Disney's film has a much higher audience rating on the site than Deep Impact.
United 93 (2006) World Trade Center (2006) 2006 released films centering around events pertaining to the September 11th Terrorist Attacks. United 93 focused around the passengers aboard the titular flight, which was downed before it could reach its targetnote , while World Trade Center was focused around the collapse of the WTC itself, particularly the emergency workers. In terms of critical response, it's no contest; United 93 got very positive reviews and earned director Paul Greengrass a Best Director nomination at the Academy Awards, while World Trade Center got middling-to-poor reviews. Both were box-office successes, with World Trade Center earning more revenue ($165m worldwide on a $60m budget), but United 93 having a much higher dollar-spent-to-earned ratio ($90m worldwide on a $15m budget).
2012 (2009) Knowing (2009) "The End of the World as We Know It" stories, both released in 2009. Knowing starts out as more of a sci-fi thriller before evolving into a disaster movie during the course of the story, while 2012 is a full-on disaster flick from the word go. Both got middling receptions, with 2012 getting better scores from the critics on Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic, but Knowing getting better audience ratings. When it comes to the box-office however, 2012 is easily the victor, with a massive $770m worldwide. That said, Knowing was no slouch in that department either, earning $180m worldwide on a $50m budget.

Initiators Followers Description Implementation Winner?
Fahrenheit 9/11 (2004) Michael Moore Hates America (2004)
Fahrenhype 9/11 (2004)
Celsius 41.11 (2004)
Documentaries released in mid-2004, relating to the George W. Bush administration, the War on Terror and the 2003 invasion of Iraq. Fahrenheit 9/11 was very critical of the Bush administration's handling of... well, just about everything. The other three were all, to varying degrees, much more in favor of Bush and the right-wing in general. Leaving aside the result of the 2004 election, Fahrenheit 9/11 was by far the best-reviewed and most financially successful of the four, though the controversy surrounding its political views and the studios who had to distribute it contributed to the end of the Disney/Miramax relationship (Miramax produced it, and Disney was forced to distribute it against CEO Michael Eisner's wishes); Miramax was replaced by the live-action side of DreamWorks for the first half of The New 10's. None of the remaining three were very well-received, though Michael Moore Hates America is generally regarded as the best of the trio, thanks to the involvement of Penn Jillette and at least making an attempt to criticize the behavior of both the left and right-wings (it currently has a 75% on Rotten Tomatoes including Two Thumbs Up from Ebert & Roeper), instead of being just outright propaganda for one or the other. Celsius 41.11 is essentially the big loser because it was a bad Box Office Bomb and crushed the career of its director, Lionel Chetwynd.
The God Who Wasn't There (2005) Religulous (2008) Documentaries about atheism and the problems with organized religion. The former gave a comedic, more light-hearted portrayal of its subject, the latter was much more serious. Religulous wins easily, as it had a successful theatrical release and got Bill Maher a spot presenting the Best Documentary Oscar in 2009. The latter meanwhile was self-distributed and its constant online ads years after release turned its director into a joke and a Shameless Self-Promoter.
Inside Job (2010) I Want Your Money (2010) Competing documentaries about the ongoing economics crisis, released one week apart in October 2010. While the former places the blame on both capitalism and politics, the latter places all of the blame on Barack Obama (who wasn't even President when it happened). Inside Job was critically acclaimed, became an arthouse hit and won an Oscar, I Want Your Money was critically savaged and only lasted a week in most theatres, only barely making its budget back.
Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory (2011) West of Memphis (2012) Documentaries about the West Memphis 3 and the near two decade-long battle to prove their innocence. Purgatory is the final chapter of the Paradise Lost series and is directed by Joe Berlinger, West of Memphis was directed by Amy Berg, produced by Peter Jackson and actually has Damien Echols (one of the West Memphis 3) as a producer, making that film more or less a first-person account of the events. Purgatory has been amassing near-unanimous acclaim and received an Oscar nomination for Best Documentary Feature. West of Memphis has also received near-unanimous acclaim, but has failed to make in on the 2012 Oscar shortlist.
Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck (2015) Soaked in Bleach (2015) 2015 documentaries about Kurt Cobain that use previously unseen materials tell their stories. Montage of Heck is an estate-approved biography that explores Cobain's life and fame, using home movie footage to show his personality outside of his persona. Soaked in Bleach uses recordings made by private investigator Tom Grant as the basis for a series of recreations arguing that Cobain's death was not a suicide but a murder perpetrated by Courtney Love. Montage of Heck was universally acclaimed as a warts and all look at an icon, with a 98% rating on Rottentomatoes. Soaked in Bleach has a 29% Tomatometer rating, with many critics writing it off due to sloppy filmmaking and logical fallacies in its argument. Plus the dramatization of Cobain's last days, which implied that his death was not suicide, got a Cease and Desist threat from his wife, Courtney Love; she never followed through on that threat.
Hillary's America: The Secret History of the Democratic Party (2016) Michael Moore in TrumpLand (2016) Documentaries released amidst the 2016 United States election attacking one of the candidates. Both are unconventional: Trumpland is a recording of Moore doing a one-person show, while Hillary's America mostly rolls on re-enactments and a Framing Device plot. Also, the latter's director Dinesh D'Souza claimed to be "50 times better than Michael Moore." Trumpland had a limited release, leading to a gross of just $149k and mixed reviews. Hillary's America on the other had a wide release that cracked the top 10 and grossed a total of $13.1 million... while receiving scathing reviews for being an incompetently made Bias Steamroller filled to the brim with blatant distortions of historical facts, to the point it even won the Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Picture.
Death of a Nation (2018) Fahrenheit 11/9 (2018) Follow-ups to the previous documentaries made by Dinesh D'Souza and Michael Moore respectively, intended to time with the 2018 mid-term elections. Death of a Nation is much the same kind of film as Hillary's America, while Fahrenheit 11/9 was the first full-on documentary by Moore for several years. Fahrenheit 11/9 got reasonably good reviews (about on-par with its forerunner, Fahrenheit 9/11), while Death of a Nation got even worse reviews than D'Souza's previous effort for making a bogus conflation of liberalism with Nazism. Neither film set the box-office alight, but Fahrenheit 11/9 has to date grossed a little more than Death of a Nation, which has become the first full-on Box Office Bomb of D'Souza's career.
Fyre Fraud (2019) Fyre: The Greatest Party That Never Happened (2019) Early 2019 documentaries about the Fyre Festival, a luxury music festival thrown by rapper Ja Rule and tech entrepreneur Billy McFarland that turned into a complete disaster due to unkept promises, horrible living conditions, cancelled acts and outright fraud. Fyre Fraud was produced by Hulu while Fyre was produced by Netflix Both documentaries ended up in a mini-feud on the week of their release: Fyre Fraud released completely unannounced 4 days before Fyre, in a move clearly meant to steal its thunder. This led to Fyre director Chris Smith calling out Hulu for having paid $250,000 to Billy McFarland for an exclusive interview and thus giving money to a convicted criminal. Hulu in turn denied having paid that much and threw the accusation back in Smith's face for having paid Jerry Media, who handled the advertising of the Fyre Festival knowing full well what was happening, for their colaboration. Fyre was better received by critics than Fyre Fraud. The fact that Netflix has a much bigger global reach than Hulu probably makes it the most viewed documentary by default.

Initiators Followers Description Implementation Winner?
Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (1968) The Love Bug (1968) Family films about magical vehicles. Both films seem to have the Disney touch. Chitty Chitty Bang Bang even had then-Disney regular Dick Van Dyke and Sherman Brothers songs. But only the latter was made in house at the legendary studio. The former was produced by Albert Broccoli of James Bond fame and was based on a novel by Ian Fleming (also of Bond fame). Chitty Chitty Bang Bang had mixed reviews and modest financial success. The Love Bug was released a few months later and eclipsed the other film and spawned a number of sequels starring the car Herbie. It was assumed that The Love Bug did better than Chitty because it was set in contemporary times but the other was not (unlike Fleming's novel).
Conan the Barbarian (1982) The Beastmaster (1982) 1982 released barbarian swords and sorcery films that center around a hero whose village winds up decimated by a band of raiders, leading to the death of his parents. The lead hero vows revenge, and thus goes up against the powerful and corrupt theocrat behind it.   The Beastmaster continues to have a strong cult following to this day, but Conan the Barbarian remains the more well known, has garnered greater acclaim from critics, and made about ten times as much money at the box office.
The Dark Crystal (1982) Krull (1983) Fantasy films from the '80s, each was set in an exotic world ruled by an evil force. A fortress must be penetrated. The Dark Crystal was done by Jim Henson (which meant, of course, animatronic puppets), while Krull was live action. Each have their fans and maintain devoted followings today, but The Dark Crystal has better critical reception. Krull was also a box office bomb while Dark Crystal was a modest box office success.
One Magic Christmas (1985) Santa Claus: The Movie (1985) Two family-friendly Christmas fantasies in which Santa Claus and the North Pole are central to the plot, with other adult roles filled by name actors of the early 1980s. Released within a week of each other in November 1985. One Magic Christmas was bankrolled by Disney and tells the low-key story of a woman who's lost the Christmas spirit in the wake of economic hardship, which threatens disaster for the entire family — unless her daughter, with the help of an angel and Santa, intervenes. Santa Claus: The Movie was bankrolled by the producers of the Christopher Reeve Superman films and tells an original Origin Story for the title character in its first third, moving on to a present day adventure for the remainder, in which a Corrupt Corporate Executive intends to conquer the holiday with the innocent aid of a runaway elf. Neither movie received good reviews — the former was dismissed as downbeat and the latter mocked as overblown. The latter qualified as a Box Office Bomb, but it had an extravagant production and budget; the Disney effort cost less to make but grossed substantially less too. And while Santa Claus: The Movie has a modest but affectionate following among kids who grew up with it, enough to warrant an elaborate DVD release, One Magic Christmas has a Vanilla Edition and goes virtually ignored by Disney itself much less '80s kids (The Nostalgia Critic hasn't even covered it for Disneycember) these days. Santa Claus: The Movie wins — a rare case where the non-Disney effort triumphs!
Legend (1985) Labyrinth (1986) Big-budget, lavish, special effects-heavy fantasies with a youthful hero/heroine and newfound fantastical companions on a quest to face off with a Big Bad and right a terrible wrong. A seductive, Large Ham villain attempts to woo the leading lady. Both films share a cinematographer (Alex Thomson), and their settings might have had more in commonnote  had the makers of the latter not been made aware of the former. While in the U.K. they were Christmas releases for 1985 and '86, respectively, the North American releases were two months apart in the spring/summer of '86. The two movies take The Hero's Journey in different directions. Ridley Scott's Legend is a straightforward Fairy Tale with a Nature Hero saving a Princess Classic and unicorns from a villain who's effectively Satan, with the fate of the world at stake. Jim Henson's Labyrinth is an often-humorous musical take on the Down the Rabbit Hole plot, with the Present Day heroine seeking to rescue the baby brother she wished away into the land of the Goblin King, and the major characters have more complex personalities/development. The former film uses prosthetic makeup for its non-human characters, while the latter uses animatronic puppets instead. Both films were box-office flops in the U.S., the latter only doing a little better than the former with critics, but gained cult followings on the video market. Labyrinth was a critical blow to director Jim Henson, who fell into depression and did not get another chance to direct before his death (taking a potential sale to Disney with him). It was also one of two major 1986 bombs for George Lucas (Howard the Duck was the other), and derailed the writing careers of Monty Python vet Terry Jones and co-writer Dennis Lee. In later years, Legend's reputation has gone up a bit thanks to a Director's Cut (the U.S. release was significantly shorter and had a completely different score), but Labyrinth has proven popular enough to spawn several memes and an Expanded Universe in graphic novel form. Both have become major cult classics, with Labyrinth having developed its slightly faster and that film's villain being the inspiration for the villain character of The Emperor (Mateus) in Final Fantasy II and the Dissidia Final Fantasy spinoff series.
Photographing Fairies (1997) FairyTale: A True Story (1997) 1997 movies somewhat based on the real-life story of the Cottingley Fairies, about two young cousins who allegedly capture real fairies on film and attract the attention of prominent figures of the time such as Arthur Conan Doyle and Harry Houdini. Photographing Fairies is more of a mystery with elements of romance and intrigue, while FairyTale is a family fantasy-drama that focuses on the two young cousins at the centre of the real-life incident. Both films In addition to being released not very far apart, both films have almost the same score on IMDb, a 6.3 for FairyTale and a 6.7 for Photographing Fairies.
Dungeons & Dragons (2000) The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001) High Fantasy in a magical land of elves, goblins and other fantastical creatures based off legendary and sacred nerd franchises. (Both distributed by New Line Cinema.) Lord of the Rings is an extraordinarily realized version of one of the most important and influential books of the twentieth century. On the other hand, Dungeons & Dragons has Tom Baker as the King of the Elves. LOTR by a landslide, in case you couldn't guess. It's one of the most revered film trilogies in movie history, and inspired The Hobbit to be adapted as well a decade later. DnD became instantly mocked for its plot and acting and tanked, sentencing ITS sequels to Direct to Video.
The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001) Harry Potter and the Philosopher's/Sorcerer's Stone (2001) First installments of high-budget film adaptations of popular and beloved fantasy series, with an overlapping viewer demographic, released within a month's difference of each other. Ironically, this duel happened again when their respective second instalments (The Lord of the Rings The Two Towers and Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets) were released the very next year.   A tie, or, better said, both films win. Both LOTR and HP were incredible box-office hits, grossing about $900 million each, successfully launching their respective film franchises, revolutionizing the use of CGI in movies and greatly raising the prestige of the fantasy genre.
Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones (2002) Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (2002)
The Lord of the Rings The Two Towers (2002)
2002 released fantasy adventure films that served as the second chapter in a contemporary string of competing franchises. Granted some would argue whether or not Star Wars should count as a fantasy or sci-fi franchise, many agree on it essentially being both. As it still has the major mystical element of the Force, and in terms of character plays more with fantasy archetypes than sci-fi ones. Overall the winner is The Two Towers, followed by Chamber of Secrets and then Attack of the Clones in terms of both financial and critical reception. However, none of them was a complete failure in any of those regards. However, like the rest of the Star Wars prequels, Attack of the Clones remains starkly divisive within the core fanbase.
Inkheart (2008) Bedtime Stories (2008) Some kid brings stories to life. Only superficially similar. Inkheart is a modern-fantasy adventure tale centered around a young teen, while Bedtime Stories is a more lighthearted Adam Sandler vehicle involving much younger children. The "stories come to life" is played for tension and action in the former while it is played for laughs and poignancy in the latter. Neither film was well-liked by critics, but Inkheart's reviews were still significantly higher than Bedtime Stories's. However, Bedtime Stories pulled in over $100 million in the US alone (and $200 million worldwide), while Inkheart was a flop, earning only $17 million domestically (its worldwide gross of $70 million was barely enough to recoup its budget).
Mirror, Mirror (2012) Snow White and the Huntsman (2012) Retellings of the classic fairy tale Snow White that both turn the titular heroine into an Action Girl. Mirror, Mirror is more lighthearted and comedic, while Snow White and the Huntsman is Darker and Edgier. Also, Mirror, Mirror actually has actors with dwarfism playing the dwarves; Huntsman uses CGI. Both of them got So Okay, It's Average reactions from critics and audiences; additionally, both were nominated for technical Academy Awards (including Best Costume Design) and Huntsman won a Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Actress (for Kristen Stewart, shared with her role in that year's Twilight film). Commercially, however, Huntsman is the clear winner, being successful enough for a sequel to be greenlit.
Jack the Giant Slayer (2013) Oz the Great and Powerful (2013) 2013 movies based on classic stories with heavy doses of special effects. Jack the Giant Slayer is based on Jack and the Beanstalk, while Oz the Great and Powerful is based on The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. Both are directed by superhero movie pioneers, Sam Raimi of the Spider-Man Trilogy for Oz and Bryan Singer of X-Men and X-2 for Jack the Giant Slayer. Both of those series could be seen as Dueling Movies on their own rights. Jack the Giant Slayer was a box office bomb and received mixed reviews from critics, and had the potential of crippling the Darker and Edgier fairy tale films until Into the Woods saved the genre. Oz the Great and Powerful has mixed reviews as well but was much more successful at the box office.
The Jungle Book (2016) (Disney) The Legend of Tarzan (Warner Bros., 2016) Two new adaptations of classic jungle literature. Jungle Book is Jon Favreau's take on the Disney classic and features a bit of a different story. Tarzan sees the titular lord of the jungle be "asked" to return to Africa after 10 years of being in England, unaware of a conspiracy in play. Disney and Jungle Book win out; it actually scored better reviews than the original film from Walt Disney and is one of the highest-grossing films of the year. The Legend of Tarzan got bad reviews from critics and was released in the 2016 "summer bomb buster" that sunk a multitude of other tentpole films. Tarzan became one of those victims despite a good audience reception.
Detective Pikachu (2019) Aladdin (2019) Live Action Adaptations of beloved properties that originated in the The '90s. Pikachu is an adaptation of the 2016 spin-off game of the same name, while Aladdin is an adaptation of the 1992 animated film. Both received significant attention (positive and negative) for the CGI recreations of their mascots. Detective Pikachu got off to a good start, with a $110 million international opening weekend and a slight edge over Aladdin among critics on Rotten Tomatoes. However, Aladdin has a solid $233 million international opening weekend despite receiving mixed reviews and opening on the cursed Memorial Day weekend. Overall, Detective Pikachu has the critical edge while Aladdin is the bigger financial success.
Wendy (2020) Come Away (2020) Modernized reimaginings of the story of Peter Pan, both playing heavily with the time period and setting. Both films premiered at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival. Wendy, directed by Benh Zeitlin (Beasts of the Southern Wild), reimagines the story as a lost-on-an-island adventure focused on Wendy rather than Peter; Come Away, directed by Brenda Chapman (The Prince of Egypt, Brave), envisions it as a journey into imaginary worlds in the wake of a tragedy, and also as a crossover with Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. TBD, but the real answer is neither. Both films were critically panned, with Wendy receiving 38% on RottenTomatoes while Come Away earned 39%. Both films have so far earned a 5.8 user score on IMDb. Wendy was a box office flop, earning just $143,518 on a $6 million budget; this was partially due to the COVID-19 Pandemic closing theaters early into its run. Come Away debuted simultaneously in theaters and on VOD due to the pandemic; it wound up outgrossing Wendy theatrically due to a wider release, but has struggled to make a dent on VOD charts.

    Martial Arts 
Initiators Followers Description Implementation Winner?
Street Fighter (1994) Mortal Kombat (1995) Two movies based off two of the most popular fighting game franchises of the 90's. Of the two, Mortal Kombat was more faithful to the source material. Both did respectably well at the box office, though did not perform as well against critics. Nowadays Street Fighter has fans who claim the movie is So Bad, It's Good. Mortal Kombat was the less cheesy of the two and many hold it up as a one of the most faithful adaptations of a video game into a movie, though it doesn't exactly have stiff competition.
Mortal Kombat: Annihilation (1997) Rush Hour (1998) Two movies with a serious Chinese martial arts angle, released a year apart by New Line Cinema towards the end of the 90's. Mortal Kombat: Annhilation is the sequel to 1995's Mortal Kombat, but only brought back the actors who played Liu Kang and Kitana; the entire crew was otherwise replaced. It continued the story of the first film with Shao Kahn taking Shang Tsung's place as the Big Bad and launching his own invasion of Earth through Mortal Kombat. Rush Hour is a light-hearted buddy-comedy martial arts film starring Jackie Chan and Chris Tucker, as they work to save a girl from the clutches of crime boss Juntao. Mortal Kombat: Annihilation succeeded where the first film failed in accomplishing the requirements to make the Video Game Movies Suck trope complete (that trope had started earlier in the decade with Disney/Hollywood Picture's Super Mario Bros., which was already a Creator Killer for its producers and directors, and the Street Fighter movie; MKA's failure ensured the trope would be here to stay). It also infected itself with Sequelitis as well (one of at least three 1997 movies that fell victim, with Batman & Robin and Speed 2: Cruise Control being two more) and took in less than half of the first movie's box office returns plus earned the hatred of both movie critics and the video game community, which included MK creator Ed Boon. Virtually everybody involved with MKA got their careers sent to the Netherworld alongside the intended film series, especially director John Leonetti, who only directed again after nine years and took eight more to actually make it with Annabelle, and producer Lawrence Kasanoff, who went on to get hung up on the infamous Foodfight! for the next decade. Rush Hour became an American Star-Making Role for both Chan and Tucker and led to a series of Rush Hour movies and eventually a TV show.

Initiators Followers Description Implementation Winner?
The Hollywood Revue Of 1929 (MGM) The Show Of Shows (1929, Warner Bros.)

Paramount On Parade (1930, Paramount)
All three films are plotless revues (musical numbers interspersed with sketches), designed to showcase the studios contracted stars and demonstrate how far they had come in talkie technology (and how much Technicolor they could afford). By 1929, audiences showed every sign of preferring sound films to silents. Each of these films was its producing studios declaration of intent, stating their claim to the future of film. The Hollywood Revue Of 1929 has the highest score on IMDB, but modern viewers should remember that none of these movies survive in the format that audiences originally saw (missing soundtracks, missing color footage, completely lost segments).
Grease (1978) Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band (1978) From record and film producer Robert Stigwood, via different studios (Paramount and Universal): Two Summer Blockbuster musicals aiming at the teenybopper market with name performers from both the film and music spheres. Both were adapted from stage productions, and both involve key alumni of Saturday Night Fever — lead actor John Travolta in the former, and band The Bee Gees in the latter (getting to act as well as provide tunes). The latter's director, Michael Schultz, turned the former down when it was initially offered to him. The former is a cheery, Camp take on The '50s; the latter is a fantasy Jukebox Musical based on songs of The Beatles. Stigwood focused on the latter film, as he was sole producer on it (as opposed to co-producer, with Allan Carr, on the former) and it had a budget three times as big, but Grease proved to be the biggest movie of 1978. While it didn't receive glowing reviews, they were much better than what Sgt. Pepper received when it opened the following month. The box office receipts barely covered the budget and many of the performers in the film suffered career setbacks for their association with it.
Can't Stop the Music (1980) Xanadu (1980) 1980 disco musicals, each with a $20 million budget, that double as non-actor vehicles. Both involve alumni of the 1978 blockbuster Grease: producer Allan Carr and screenwriter Bronte Woodard with the former, and lead actress Olivia Newton-John with the latter. (Carr wanted Newton-John for the female lead in Can't Stop, but it didn't work out.) The former fictionalizes the creation and rise to stardom of the Village People and intertwines it with a romance between an uptight lawyer (Caitlyn Jenner) and a feisty ex-model (Valerie Perrine). The latter is a fantasy about a Greek Muse (Newton-John) who inspires a struggling artist (Michael Beck) to open a lavish roller disco; complications ensue when she falls in love with him. Can't Stop opened in June, Xanadu in August — either way, they were victims of the "Disco Sucks!" backlash. Both received wretched reviews and derailed the film careers of several of their leads, one of whom was Gene Kelly, who never played another fictional role. They inspired the very first Golden Raspberry Awards when they ran as a double feature; the former "won" Worst Picture and Screenplay, and the latter Worst Director. But Xanadu barely made back its budget, had a hit soundtrack, became a camp classic via cable, and received an intentionally tongue-in-cheek Screen-to-Stage Adaptation in 2007. Can't Stop the Music only grossed $2 million and sounded the death knell for the Village People's popularity and director Nancy Walker, and Carr never had a serious career after it (the notorious Snow White opening number from the Oscars at the end of the 1980's, which put him in Disney's crosshairs, drove the final nail into his coffin).
The Pirate Movie (1982) The Pirates of Penzance (1983) Both are adaptations of the famous Gilbert and Sullivan operetta The Pirates of Penzance released around 1982-1983. The former is a very-loose rendition of the story with a few of the same songs (and some extras) and a generally 80s feel. The latter is a filmed rendition of the then-running Broadway revival with much of the same cast. The Pirate Movie got to theaters first, in the midst of Penzance's Broadway run, and quickly faded away. Although a box-office bomb itself, the failure of Penzance was caused by Executive Meddling, not lack of interest. The Pirates of Penzance actually enjoyed a long run in one of the 92 theaters that showed it. The Pirates of Penzance, with a higher Rotten Tomatoes score and a Golden Globe nom for Best Actress. The Pirate Movie bombed critically and earned a few Razzie nominations.
U2 3D (2007) Hannah Montana & Miley Cyrus: Best of Both Worlds Concert (2008) 3-D concert films. The U2 concert was shown at IMAX, while the Hannah Montana concert was shown in digital 3-D only. And one year later came the cheaper Jonas Brothers 3-D concert, which was also shown at IMAX. Hannah Montana had a much bigger box office, but U2 3D was better received by critics.
Film/Rags (2012) Let It Shine (2012) TV movie about a teen boy who wants to be a singing star but has a disapproving father. Elsewhere, successful African-American female pop star wishes to sing her own music her own way. The two meet up and (presumably) achieve their respective goals. Both are also based off of classic stories. (Cinderella for Rags and Cyrano de Bergerac for Let It Shine). Rags is Nickelodeon and Let It Shine is Disney Channel. Let It Shine, although Rags did pretty decently as well, especially on iTunes.
Bohemian Rhapsody (2018) Rocketman (2019) Biopic musicals about famous British queer Classic Rock and Glam Rock artists - Queen and Freddie Mercury for the former, Elton John for the latter - with much input from those artists in question. Plus, they share a director, Dexter Fletcher, although with a caveat - Rocketman was completely directed by him, while Bohemian Rhapsody had a Troubled Production, with the original director famously getting unceremoniously fired from the set, but still given credit thanks to DGA rules. BoRhap was one of the last films produced by its distributor before being bought by the current owner of Queen’s music in the US and Canada; Rocketman was inherited by its distributor after the semi-success of another film produced by Elton John which was a sequel to a film distributed by that very owner. The former is rated PG-13 (12A in the UK); the latter, a hard R (15). Rhapsody, by virtue of its sheer blowout performance and awards victories. The former has several Oscar wins to its name, one thanks to the performance of Rami Malek, and a gross of over $900m worldwide. Though Rocketman received the strongest critical reception, a lavish premiere at Cannes and a Golden Globe win for the man playing Elton (Taron Egerton), its (perfectly solid) $193 million gross can't compare to Rhapsody's enormous figures and Oscar glory (despite its acclaim, Rocketman was largely ignored by the Academy in the following year).
The Dirt (2019) Rocketman (2019) Biopic musicals about hit 1980s musicians (Mötley Crüe and Elton John, respectively), each dealing with the characters suffering and recuperating from severe drug addictions that nearly cost them their lives. Unlike the previous year's PG-13 Bohemian Rhapsody, both of these films are distinctly R-rated. While Rocketman was a theatrically-released film from Paramount, The Dirt was released directly to Netflix. Dirt was based on the band's tell-all book of the same name, while Rocketman was produced by John himself. Rocketman. While The Dirt appears to have been a solid hit for its distributor, it received mixed-negative reviews from critics and is not considered an awards contender. Rocketman, while falling well short of Rhapsody's incredible box office performance, enjoyed a healthy box office run at $195 million and received rave reviews from critics and audiences, resulting in several Golden Globe and BAFTA nominations, including a win in the former for lead actor Taron Egerton.
I Still Believe (2020) Clouds (2020) A young musician must come to terms with the impact of a devastating cancer diagnosis and its effects on his family and relationships, ultimately inspiring his hit song that serves as the title of the film and is featured in the soundtrack. Based on a True Story. I Still Believe is a Christian film from the Erwin Brothers (I Can Only Imagine), distributed by Lionsgate and based on the story of singer Jeremy Camp and his first wife Melissa Lynn Henning-Camp. Clouds is based on the life of Zach Sobiech; the film was originally set to be theatrically distributed by Warner Bros., but was later acquired by Disney+ for streaming in the wake of the COVID-19 Pandemic. In I Still Believe, Jeremy must deal with his wife's cancer diagnosis; in Clouds, it is Zach himself who receives the diagnosis. Unclear. I Still Believe received much fanfare heading into its March release, becoming the first faith-based film to be screened in IMAX. However, the COVID-19 pandemic had already begun to severely impact the film industry, and the film debuted to just $9.1 million. Theaters shut down nationwide within a week, and the film was transferred to premium VOD rental by the end of the month. (No statistics on its digital performance have been released.) The pandemic led Clouds to make the jump to a streaming debut in mid-October; it spent its first week of release moderately high on, though never at the top of, Disney+'s "trending" list. However, Clouds has since proven very resilient, charting strongly on said list far longer than most "Disney+ Original" movies. In terms of reviews, Clouds has the advantage on Believe, 76% to 51% on Rotten Tomatoes. Among audiences, Clouds also received a stronger IMDb score, 7.5 to 6.5, though its Rotten Tomatoes audience score is slightly lower (92% to 98%). In all instances, Clouds has drastically fewer ratings, suggesting lower viewership.
In the Heights (2021) West Side Story (2021) Film adaptations of iconic stage musicals centered on immigrant Hispanic neighborhoods in New York City, featuring a notable cameo from a previous production/adaptation. Both films are their high-profile directors' first time directing a straightforward musical. In the Heights is Warner Bros.' adaptation of the 2005 play by Quiara Alegría Hudes and Lin-Manuel Miranda, directed by Jon M. Chu. Miranda has a minor role in the film, alongside several members of the original production, some of whom reprise their original characters. West Side Story, from 20th Century Studios, is the second major film adaptation of its 1957 source play, after the Oscar-winning 1961 film (Rita Moreno, who starred in that version, cameos here). The film is directed by Steven Spielberg. Both films were initially set to launch in 2020, but were delayed a year due to the COVID-19 Pandemic. In the Heights scored superlative reviews from critics with a 96% on Rotten Tomatoes, alongside high audience marks from viewers (95% on Rotten Tomatoes, 7.7 on IMDb). However, the reception was marred by the film becoming an Acclaimed Flop, failing to reach even $12 million opening weekend despite a massive ad campaign and having an estimated viewership well below most prior Same-Day Release titles on HBO Max. Making matters worse, the film became embroiled in negative publicity due to criticism over its lack of Afro-Latino performers, which Lin-Manuel Miranda publicly apologized for. West Side Story, while also an Acclaimed Flop, made more money than In the Heights while achieving a similarly high Rotten Tomatoes score.

Initiators Followers Description Implementation Winner?
Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief (2010) Clash of the Titans (2010) Two action-adventure movies with very different target audiences (Percy Jackson is based on a YA book series; Clash is a remake of the 1981 movie). Both are very loosely based on Classical Mythology, up to having an overlapping character roster. Which Zeus do you prefer, Sean Bean or Liam Neeson? The sequel for the Percy Jackson movie was announced before the release... and yet languished in Development Hell for a while (and came out one year after the sequel to the other one, Wrath of the Titans). Both films received lukewarm reviews, but Clash did much better financially.
The Legend of Hercules (2014) Hercules (2014) Adaptations of the Hercules myth made for the modern audience. The Legend of Hercules has an original story and stars Kellan Lutz. The other Hercules is based on a comic miniseries and stars Dwayne Johnson aka The Rock. The Legend of Hercules was a critical and commercial failure. In its first weekend, Hercules already earned more at the box office than The Legend of Hercules and although reviews were mixed, it still did noticeably better with critics.
Noah (2014) Exodus: Gods and Kings (2014) Big budget - and controversial - epics based on stories from The Bible by highly respected filmmakers (The former has Darren Aronofsky while the latter is by Ridley Scott). Noah has gone for more of a fantasy angle while Exodus is much more grounded. Funnily enough, the latter's lead was suppose to be in the former but dropped out. Regarding the controversies, Noah was criticized for the Biblical accuracy while Exodus received more complaints on the race casting on the main cast. Both films got banned in several Islamic countries because Noah and Moses were considered prophets of Allah and any portrayal of them is forbidden. Noah wins. It got more positive reviews than Exodus, which got mixed to negative reviews. Regardless that both films got banned in several Islamic countries, Noah was considered to be a hit while Exodus is said to be a flop.

Initiators Followers Description Implementation Winner?
RAD (1986) Thrashin (1986) 1986 films cashing in on the extreme sports craze.   Both got terrible reviews, but Rad has retained a cult following and has one of the widest discrepancies between critic and audience scores on Rotten Tomatoes of any movie.
Celtic Pride (1996) The Fan (1996) 1996 films centering around crazy sports fans. Celtic Pride was played for laughs while The Fan was a thriller. Both films were critical and commercial flops, but The Fan has the slight advantage with the reviews being slight more favorable (Celtic Pride has 9% on Rotten Tomatoes, while The Fan has 34%) and making a bit more in the box office ($18,626,419, compared to Celtic Pride's $9,255,027. Also, while the three leads' careers of Celtic Pride would suffer from this flop, Wesley Snipes and Robert De Niro would rebound and find more success headlining motion pictures, all this makes The Fan the winner.

Initiators Followers Description Implementation Winner?
Major Dundee (1965) The Glory Guys (1965) 1965 Westerns about arrogant cavalry officers leading their command in disastrous campaigns against the Apache Indians. This is an especially odd pairing, with considerable overlap between the two movies. The Glory Guys started life as a Sam Peckinpah script, with Peckinpah himself slated to direct, but the project spent years in Development Hell and eventually Peckinpah abandoned it. By the time The Glory Guys finally went into production, Peckinpah was directing Major Dundee...which didn't stop the two productions from sharing several actors (Michael Anderson Jr., Senta Berger, Slim Pickens), besides the similar plots. In the short-term, neither. Both movies flopped upon release, though Dundee had its share of sympathetic reviewers whereas Glory Guys was universally panned. While Dundee's rarely listed among the all-time great Westerns, it does have a significant cult following, especially among Peckinpah fans, while The Glory Guys remains extremely obscure.
The Wild Bunch (1969) Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969) 1969 released westerns set around the turn of the 20th Century that center around aging outlaws who seek to make a last big score and then flee to a country south of the border to retire. Both parties are pursued by a posse, and ultimately in the end get gunned down. Butch Cassidy was originally titled The Wild Bunch, which was one of several names (along with the Hole-in-the-Wall Gang) that Cassidy's gang was known as historically, but Peckinpah's film went into production first. Today each is considered a classic of the genre, but at the time Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid won. Getting very favorable reviews from critics, won 4 Oscars, and made almost ten times as much money at the box office. That being said The Wild Bunch has grown in stature over the years and became very influential on westerns if not action films at large that followed. Making this a very close call.
A Man Called Horse (1970) Little Big Man (1970) 1970 released westerns that both center around a white man who lives, or had grown up living, among a tribe of Native Americans.   In terms of both reviews and the box office Little Big Man takes it. Though for what it's worth, A Man Called Horse was still successful enough to merit getting sequels.
Hannie Caulder (1971) The Legend of Frenchie King (1971) 1971 released westerns that have women as gunslinging protagonists and are heavy on the fanservice. Hannie Caulder is a revenge drama, while Frenchie King is a farce. Hard to say. Both movies were considered trashy at release and are still considered so today. Though reviews may be kinder to Hannie Caulder.
Tombstone (1993) Wyatt Earp (1994) Historical westerns about... Wyatt Earp. Tombstone starred Kurt Russell and was distributed by Hollywood Pictures, while Wyatt Earp starred Kevin Costner and was distributed by Disney's longtime Arch-Enemy Warner Bros.. Costner was originally involved with Tombstone but left over disagreements regarding the script, deciding to make his own Earp pic. He even put pressure on studios to refuse distribution of Tombstone, but guess which one made more money in the end... Tombstone proved to be a hit and earned the better reviews, while Wyatt Earp flopped at the box office and got nominated for five Razzies. Wyatt was also one of three films in the 90's that crippled Costner's A-list status, followed by Waterworld and The Postman.
3:10 to Yuma (2007) The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford (2007) Star-studded, prestigious revisionist westerns based on popular books. 3:10 was a remake of a movie from The '50s, while Assassination was based on real events. 3:10 won at the Box Office ($70m against Assassination's $15m) and among critics (89% on RV vs. 76%), though Assassination remains the more talked-about film among critics today.
The Revenant (2015) The Hateful Eight (2015) 2015 released westerns set in the 19th century in the harsh cold with long running times, lots of violence, production troubles and highly notable directors at the helm of both of them (Alejandro González Iñárritu for the former, Quentin Tarantino for the latter). The Revenant is set during the 1820's and is Very Loosely Based on a True Story on frontiersman Hugh Glass while The Hateful Eight is an original idea by Tarantino and set sometime after the The American Civil War. On top of that, the scale of both films are the exact opposite; The former is large scale with massive battle scenes and sprawling set pieces while the latter is mostly set in a cabin somewhere in the middle of nowhere. Both received positive reviews, but The Revenant proved to be the winner with better reviews and box office (The former made well over 500 million worldwide while the latter earned 155 million worldwide). In addition to that, The Revenant achieved significantly more attention from the Golden Globes and Oscars (3 major wins at the Golden Globes including Best Picture, and 3 Oscar wins including Best Director and Best Actor versus Hateful Eight's 1 win at the Golden Globes and the Oscars for Ennio Morricone's score).

Alternative Title(s): Duelling Movies, Dueling Movies