I saw an interesting artlcle in The London Independent the other day, on top movie franchises. Not the ones with most box office, or the best critical reception, but just the ones with the most movies. As a firm believer in completism, my first thought was "How many have I failed to see?" So I checked to find out.

How many have you seen or failed to see?

#1: Godzilla (26 movies)

Well, phooey, off to a bad start. I've seen a lot of Gozilla movies, but there's no way I've seen 26. I've seen the  first both ways, the original, subtitled Japanese version and the Raymond Burr version. And I've seen all four Hollywood movies with the Big G. And I've seen a bunch of team-up movies, but are they counted? (The Independent didn't print lists, which seem counter-intuitive to me.) Well, I've seen the one with King Ghidorah, the one with Mechagodzilla, Destroy All Monsters, and a few others. I hope Bob reads this and does a forensic analysis of what The Independent probably considered "the canon 26," and points out which ones are must-see films.

I will watch anything Baron Bizarre tells me to. Word.

#2: James Bond (24)

Uh-oh, I have failed again. I've seen most of them, but I tapered off during the Roger Moore era and didn't start watching again until Timothy Dalton. I know I've missed a couple of Moores, all of the Pierce Brosnans, plus the ever-elusive On Her Majesty's Secret Service with George Lazenby. OTOH, I've seen both Casinos Royale, so that must count for something.

No Time to Die, coming later this year, is #25.

#3: The Marvel Cinematic Universe (23)

Hoo-ray, I've seen them all! There's four more coming this year, and four next year, so to stay a completist I have my work cut out for me.

Although I do think it may be a little unfair to lump them all together, when they are actually groups of related franchises rather than a single franchise starring a single character, like Godzilla and James Bond. But this is about to get a little more complicated, so I guess it's OK to bend the rules a little.

#4: Star Trek (13)

Well, that was a pretty big drop-off! Take another bow, Godzilla and Bond! 

I've seen all these, of course, although it took me about a decade to get around to the last TNG film, as they felt more and more like extended TV episodes (or commercials for Star Trek toys). If they hadn't mercy-killed the franchise, I would have stopped watching anyway. 

#4: X-Men (13)

Tied for fourth are the 13 X-movies. The Independent is counting the two Deadpool movies and New Mutants, which I think is totally fair, since thy were made by Fox and intended to be part of the franchise until Disney scooped up the whole megillah.

I don't know if I can consider any future X-movies from Marvel Studios as part of this franchise or not. I'm open to argument.

I finally caught New Mutants on Netflix, so I can say I've seen 'em all.

#6: Spider-Man (11)

I can hear everyone saying "Say WHAT?" But the Independent apparently counted the three made-for-TV movies with Nicholas Hammond, plus the Japanese Spider-Man movie. Combined with the three Tobey Maguire movies, the two Andrew Garfield movies and the two Tom Holland movies, that makes 11. Spider-Man: No Way Home, coming in December, will be #12.

Don't think it escaped my notice that they counted the two Holland movies twice, in this list and in the MCU list. And they counted the made-for-TV Spider-Man movies, but didn't count the made-for-TV Hulk, Captain America or Dr. Strange movies. And the Venom movies don't seem to be counted anywhere. Who's making these rules, anyway?

I've never seen the Japanese one, and I'm not positive I saw all three Nicholas Hammond TV films. I've seen at least two, I think. I've seen the rest.

#6: Star Wars (11)

Well, this is easy: three trilogies, Solo, Rogue One. Eleven movies, and I've seen 'em all.

#6: Batman (11)

I had trouble coming up with 11 for Batman that didn't include anything animated. (If animation was included, Batman would be far and away #1. Sorry, Big G.) I thought: Batman serial (1943), TV Batman movie (1966), four movies beginning in 1989, three in the recent trilogy and uhhhh ...

Then I realized the last two must be Batman v. Superman and Justice League. Which will be double-counted in the DCEU section below, as well as being team movies, not Batman movies. Well, I guess what's good for the spider is good for the bat.

Seen 'em all, natch.

#9: DCEU (9)

This one's pretty easy, since it started relatively recently, and I've seen them all: Man of Steel, Batman v. Superman, Justice League, Suicide Squad, Wonder Woman, Wonder Woman 1984, Birds of Prey and Shazam!

Note that his double-counts two movies with the Batman list.

Note that this does not count Joker

Note that this number will increase dramatically. Films in the works include The Suicide Squad, Black Adam, Flash, The Batman, Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom and Shazam: Thunder of the Gods.

#9: Planet of the Apes (9)

I'm not surprised that I'm unfamiliar with which films they might be counting. I watched the original trilogy -- yes, even the James Franciscus one -- and the TV show. I also read Marvel's magazine and comics series. After that, I've had my fill of the Apes scenario, and don't feel the need to see/read any more.

#9: Fast and Furious (9)

Haven't watched a one. Never will.

#9: Tyler Perry's Madea (9)

Haven't watched a one. Never will.

#13: Harry Potter (8)

I assumed these were aimed at a younger audience and never watched any. Am I wrong, Legionnaires?

#13: The Conjuring (8)

Never been into horror movies much, especially slasher movies. So I've never seen a one of these. But there must be some reason it lasted longer than the others. What's the story, Legionnaires?

#15: Rocky (6)

I watched the first one, and discovered I did not care for boxing movies. 

So that's the Independent list. I'm kinda wondering how accurate it is. I don't know, for example, how many Resident Evil movies there have been, but I bet it's at least six. What about Halloween? Nightmare on Elm Street? Scream? They included The Conjuring, so I'm wondering where its brethren are.

Regardless, it's a good way to launch a discussion. What's missing from this list? What have you seen, Legionnaires?

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If seeing a movie is defined as "from beginning to end," then I haven't seen most of these. I have not seen any of the Godzilla, Harry Potter, The Conjuring (I've never even heard of The Conjuring) and Rocky movies. 

So I have seen three-quarters of the James Bond movies, including all three versions of Casino Royale (the 1954 episode of the anthology show Climax, starring an American (!) as Bond, the horrible 1967 spoof starring David Niven, Peter Sellers and Woody Allen, and the 2006 Daniel Craig version). 

I've seen all of the Marvel Cinematic Universe movies. (How could I not?)

I have never watched any of the X-Men movies in their entirety.

Back when I used to care about Star Wars, I saw the first trilogy and the second trilogy. I have had less than zero interest since.

Batman? I've seen the movie from the TV series (who hasn't?), and all of the live-action films, plus Batman: Mask of the Phantasm. I have not seen Joker, and don't want to. ("Grouch" was sufficient.)

God help me, I have seen all of the DC Extended Universe films! I watched Birds of Prey and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn just a couple months ago. (I have a soft spot for Wonder Woman 1984.) The exception is Zack Snyder's Justice League; I decided I couldn't punish myself that way, not after Jeff of Earth-J was so kind as to watch it so I didn't have to.

I saw the original Planet of the Apes series one week, many moons ago, and the first of the modern series.

In a moment of what can only be described as temporary insanity, I actually did watch The Fast and the Furious movies in succession, save for the unofficial prequel Better Luck Tomorrow and spinoff Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw. I hope the IQ points I lost have grown back by now.

I've seen one Madea movie, and that was quite enough, thank you.

Godzilla: The first eleven (up to 1971), one from the 80s, and four from this century (including Shin Godzilla), so I'm ten short.

Marvel: I think I'm good there! I'm missing some of the TV shows, however.

James Bond: large gaps between Roger Moore and Daniel Craig. By brother and his eldest daughter are Bond completists, however.

Star Trek: complete, but not always satisfied.

X-Men: I have not seen New Mutants.

Spider-man: I only saw the first Nicholas Hammond, and I haven't seen the Japanese ones. I have watched all the twenty-first century Spideys.

Star Wars: The Trilogy and Rogue One, so I've seen the whole series!

Okay, I also watched a bunch of other ones and the Holiday Special, but we won't talk about them. 

Batman: I've seen all live action, but the serial only in parts. I have not seen all animated.

DCEU: All but Suicide Squad and the Snyder cut of Justice League.

Planet of the Apes: Complete. I loved the old ones when I was a kid and probably saw the '68 film nine times. I recommend the new ones.

Fast and Furious: None, save for a few minutes on TV. I suspect it was enough to get the drift.

Madea: Nope.

Harry Potter: Seen them all. My wife is a fan. The movies, like the novels, sort of "grow up" with the readership.

The Conjuring: Three. I'm a fan of horror movies, but I found these kind of... adequate, I guess. I watched the first two and The Nun. I would not call them slasher films.  Basically, the films take their inspiration from real-life hucksters supernatural investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren. Initially, the series takes their trumped-up accounts of things they investigated and elaborates them in the most outrageous "Inspired by a True Story" tradition. At some point, I think, the series leaves even the small semblance of basis in reality behind.

Rocky: One, two, three... The second two couldn't touch the first one, so I gave up. I liked Rocky Balboa, and likely will see the Creed movies at some point.

Interesting question, Skipper.  I've seen 33 of the 36 Godzilla features.  (I haven't seen the animated trilogy, and I've no idea what is meant by the "Canon 26".) I'll give my thoughts later.

I was online, Cap, when you posted last night. My first thought: that Godzilla counts a bit light. My second: I'm going to let Bob respond. My third: I'll probably add a few favorite franchises of my own. Here's my tally.

Godzilla: Check. I don't generally consider animated features as canon (except in the case of Star Trek: The Animated Series, which is not a movie, anyway), but I've seen the 33 of Bob's count.

James Bond: Check.

Marvel Cinematic Universe: I've seen some of the early ones (Hulk, Daredevil, Elektra, Wolverine, Fantastic Four), then decided comic books don't translate well to film (not super-hero comic books, anyway). 

Star Trek: Check.

Spider-Man: I stopped watching after the one where he ripped his mask off in public. That ripped me right out of the movie, and the franchise. And don't tell me "his mask was on fire." Writer's fiat! Spider-Man's secret identity is more important than Tobey McGuire's pretty face. 

Star Wars: Check (although my count of what's canon is less than eleven).

Planet of the Apes: Check (inluding TV series and animated).

Harry Potter: Probably. My wife is a huge fan and every one I've seen I've seen with her. To be perfectly honest, I can't tell them apart (except the first one in which they're all little kids). It used to irritate me when casual fans would refer to Star Trek IV as "the one with the whales," but I get it now. 

Rocky: Check, but my total is eight (soon too be nine) because there's no way I don't include the "Creed" ones in the count.

Now for a few of my own...

GAMERA (12)

PINK PANTHER / INSPECTOR CLOUSEAU (11)

UNIVERSAL STUDIOS MONSTER MOVIES (?) - A difficult count, depending on what's in and what's out. "Frankenstein" alone would be interesting, but what to include? Universal? Hammer? Other? 

Whoops! Looks like I left out a few ... 

Star Trek: Maybe half of them. I get less interested the more time passes.

Spider-Man: All of the Tobey Maguire movies, all of the Tom Holand movies, and the first Andrew Garfield movie. I thought Garfield was miscast and couldn't buy him, so I never saw the second one.

Marvel Cinematic Universe: All of the big-screen movies so far, and every episode of Agent Carter. I bailed on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. after one season, never saw The Inhumans, and haven't seen any of the Netflix or Disney+ TV shows.

Marvel Movie Universe: This would be the ones before Marvel got into the movie business itself, and it's a mixed bag. I've seen both Hulk movies, three of the four Fantastic Four movies (haven't made time for the disposable Roger Corman one), Daredevil, Elektra, and one of the Ghost Rider movies (don't remember which one).

ClarkKent_DC said:

If seeing a movie is defined as "from beginning to end," then I haven't seen most of these. I have not seen any of the Godzilla, Harry Potter, The Conjuring (I've never even heard of The Conjuring) and Rocky movies. 

So I have seen three-quarters of the James Bond movies, including all three versions of Casino Royale (the 1954 episode of the anthology show Climax, starring an American (!) as Bond, the horrible 1967 spoof starring David Niven, Peter Sellers and Woody Allen, and the 2006 Daniel Craig version). 

I've seen all of the Marvel Cinematic Universe movies. (How could I not?)

I have never watched any of the X-Men movies in their entirety.

Back when I used to care about Star Wars, I saw the first trilogy and the second trilogy. I have had less than zero interest since.

Batman? I've seen the movie from the TV series (who hasn't?), and all of the live-action films, plus Batman: Mask of the Phantasm. I have not seen Joker, and don't want to. ("Grouch" was sufficient.)

God help me, I have seen all of the DC Extended Universe films! I watched Birds of Prey and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn just a couple months ago. (I have a soft spot for Wonder Woman 1984.) The exception is Zack Snyder's Justice League; I decided I couldn't punish myself that way, not after Jeff of Earth-J was so kind as to watch it so I didn't have to.

I saw the original Planet of the Apes series one week, many moons ago, and the first of the modern series.

In a moment of what can only be described as temporary insanity, I actually did watch The Fast and the Furious movies in succession, save for the unofficial prequel Better Luck Tomorrow and spinoff Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw. I hope the IQ points I lost have grown back by now.

I've seen one Madea movie, and that was quite enough, thank you.

This is tough for me, because I enjoy all of the Godzilla movies on some level, even the sh***y ones, even Godzilla (1998).  But saying "Watch 'em all!" isn't useful in this context, so, after some deliberation, here's my top twelve:

  1. Godzilla (1954) The original Japanese version
  2. King Kong vs. Godzilla (1962)  The American version is OK, but see the Japanese version if you can.  It's a myth that there were two different endings.
  3. Mothra vs. Godzilla, a.k.a Godzilla vs. The Thing (1964)
  4. Ghidrah the Three-Headed Monster (1964)  The first G-Film I ever saw
  5. Monster Zero, a.k.a. Invasion of the Astro-Monster  (1965)
  6. Destroy All Monsters (1968)
  7. Godzilla vs. Mothra (1992)
  8. Godzilla 2000 (1999)
  9. Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out  Attack (2001)
  10. Godzilla: Final Wars (2004)
  11. Shin Godzilla (2016)
  12. Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019)

Looking at  this list, you can guess  when my "Golden Age" of Godzilla Movies was.

For the record, here's how I divide up the Godzilla movies that I've seen:

The Showa Era Films:  The fifteen movies from Godzilla (1954) to Terror of Mechagodzilla 

The Heisei Era Films:  The seven films from Godzilla (1984)* to Godzilla vs. Destroyah

The Millennium Films:  The six films from Godzilla 2000  to Godzilla: Final Wars

The Monsterverse Films:  The three films from Godzilla (2014) to Godzilla vs. Kong

Singletons:  Godzilla (1998) and Shin Godzilla

*Technically G84 was released in the Showa Era, but it gets put in with the Heisei films because it's part of the same continuity.

I enjoyed the Harry Potter movies (and the books). They were sort of for kids in the beginning, but as the young magicians age the treatment ages up too. I guess they're still YA, but I found them relatable.

As a regular watcher of horror movies, I was thrown by The Conjuring. Turns out a bunch of movies in that universe don't have "conjuring' in the name, e.g. the Annabelle movies. Still surprised that I have apparently only seen The Conjuring 2, which I liked. Have to look out for the others.

What great posts! The more you guys posted, with your vast knowledge, the more inadequate the Independent's framework is. Also, in some cases it's just flat wrong. For example:

1. Bob and Jeff say there are 33 live-action Godzilla movies. What is wrong with the Independent that it only counted 26? Obviously, they are wrong.

2. Speaking of the Big G, I was delighted to see that I had watched most of the Godzilla movies Bob listed. Probably because the they were on TV at a time when I was of an age to watch them.

3. The Independent's list didn't count the three animated Godzilla movies, because it didn't count any animated movies. That may be an artificial distinction, if animated movies follow the same continuity as the live-action films. (For example, the Star Trek animated series used the same actors for voices and much of the same writers and producers as the original series, so it's borderline canon on my Earth.)

4. I will say again, if we are counting animated movies, Batman -- and the DCEU in general -- will blow everybody away. Warners Home Video has been churning out animated superhero movies like there's no tomorrow. We should probably start a comics-to-animation list, too.

5. James Bond was also undercounted. The Independent was apparently only counting Bond movies produced by the Broccoli family, so they didn't count the 1967 Casino Royale or Never Say Never Again.

6. I was aware of the 1954 Climax episode of Casino Royale, CK, but it's not on the list because it was a TV show, not a movie. We probably ought to start a comics-to-TV list, too.

7. Jeff, the Marvel Cinematic Universe starts with Incredible Hulk movie in 2008. All the ones you listed  (Hulk, Daredevil, Elektra, Wolverine, Fantastic Four) were pre-MCU, either Universal or Fox. And most were awful. In fact, you list three of the worst (Elektra, X-Men Origins: Wolverine, Fantastic Four). You might as well have been watching the 1970s-'80s made-for-TV movies. Marvel Studios is a quantum level better. Incredible Hulk isn't great, but it's better than the 2003 Hulk, and it leads to Iron Man, which is really quite good. Which then leads to 10 years of interconnected movies that feels like re-experiencing  early Marvel comics again, only this time on the screen.

8. Speaking of made-for-TV movies, I'm still baffled that the Independent included the Spider-Man trio, but not the three Bill Bixby Hulk movies, the three TV Captain America movies or Peter Hooten's Dr. Strange. That seems arbitrary. On our list, we'll find a home for them, maybe "legacy movies" or something.

9. Ditto that the Batman listing includes the 1943 Batman serial, but the 1940s Superman, Blackhawk, Captain Marvel and Captain America serials don't get a nod. Just arbitrary.

10. I have no idea why the Independent includes The Conjuring, while ignoring the other long-running horror franchises, or Jeff's suggestions above. But speaking of which, DC is publishing a Conjuring comic book currently, in its new DC Horror line.

11. Obviously, I'm going to create a more accurate list that we can all contribute to. Who doesn't love a list?

Note that the 33 live-action G-Films do not comprise a single consistent continuity. In fact, some poor sap  has determined they cover at least nine different timelines.

Godzilla – I have seen at least 20 of the Toho films featuring Godzilla and have seen bits and pieces of several others as well as the recent American productions.

 James Bond – 23 out of 26 - one of my favorite series.  I have never seen Casino Royale 1967 or License To Kill in their entirety and have avoided Moore’s final outing View To A Kill.

 MCU – 17

 X-Men –  the first three.

 Spider-Man – only the first two with Toby Mcguire

 Star Wars – seen ‘em all

 Batman – 4  - the two Timothy Burton films along with Batman Forever and Batman Begins. The count is five if the 1966 feature film is included on the list.

 DCEU – only 1 – Man of Steel - no interest in seeing anymore.

 Planet of the Apes - seen ‘em all

 Star Trek – 13 movies! Really?! Have seen 12. All except the most recent.

 Rocky and Harry Potter – saw the first two from each series. The only reason I saw the two Potter films was to accompany my daughter who was a fan.

 

The rest on the list – no interest in any of them.

As far as slasher movies go, I've seen twelve Friday the 13th and nine Nightmare on Elm Street movies, assuming we count Freddy vs. Jason  on both lists.

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