Universal Monsters Cinematic Universe

For the discussion of non-Toho monster media, tokusatsu franchises, and also for mixed discussion of Toho and non-Toho kaiju media.
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Re: Universal Monsters Cinematic Universe

Postby eabaker » Mon Jan 28, 2019 11:05 am

Maritonic wrote:
eabaker wrote:
Maritonic wrote:So this is their, what, fourth new course for this? Just let it die.


At least it seems like they're letting it be more storyteller-driven, and not focused on forcing an interconnected cinematic universe. I think that's always been the wrong approach for these characters, but they are characters I think could continue to have an interesting presence in movies.


Possibly, but I just don't see them continuing anymore. What made these movies so excellent is far lost to history. I don't think we're capable of recreating it.


And I think trying to recreate it would be a mistake. I think the future needs to be different, to explore new avenues for these characters.
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Re: Universal Monsters Cinematic Universe

Postby Maritonic » Mon Jan 28, 2019 11:06 am

eabaker wrote:
Maritonic wrote:
eabaker wrote:
At least it seems like they're letting it be more storyteller-driven, and not focused on forcing an interconnected cinematic universe. I think that's always been the wrong approach for these characters, but they are characters I think could continue to have an interesting presence in movies.


Possibly, but I just don't see them continuing anymore. What made these movies so excellent is far lost to history. I don't think we're capable of recreating it.


And I think trying to recreate it would be a mistake. I think the future needs to be different, to explore new avenues for these characters.


Which is why Coppola's Dracula worked. Same with Frankenstein. They were fresh, new, stylistic. These new attempts are cookie cutter, boring, hollow.
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Re: Universal Monsters Cinematic Universe

Postby eabaker » Mon Jan 28, 2019 11:11 am

Maritonic wrote:
eabaker wrote:
Maritonic wrote:
Possibly, but I just don't see them continuing anymore. What made these movies so excellent is far lost to history. I don't think we're capable of recreating it.


And I think trying to recreate it would be a mistake. I think the future needs to be different, to explore new avenues for these characters.


Which is why Coppola's Dracula worked. Same with Frankenstein. They were fresh, new, stylistic. These new attempts are cookie cutter, boring, hollow.


Agreed.

Which is why I'm cautiously (very cautiously) optimistic about the idea that they're going to let these projects be more filmmaker-driven, rather than focused on fitting into a rigid shared universe framework.
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Re: Universal Monsters Cinematic Universe

Postby Maritonic » Mon Jan 28, 2019 11:12 am

eabaker wrote:
Maritonic wrote:
eabaker wrote:
And I think trying to recreate it would be a mistake. I think the future needs to be different, to explore new avenues for these characters.


Which is why Coppola's Dracula worked. Same with Frankenstein. They were fresh, new, stylistic. These new attempts are cookie cutter, boring, hollow.


Agreed.

Which is why I'm cautiously (very cautiously) optimistic about the idea that they're going to let these projects be more filmmaker-driven, rather than focused on fitting into a rigid shared universe framework.

We'll see. I personally think the ship for this sailed many moons ago.
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Re: Universal Monsters Cinematic Universe

Postby kingkevzilla88 » Mon Jan 28, 2019 11:13 am

Forth timed the charm, hopefully they'll learn from their mistakes of Dracula untold and The mummy. Make them Monster Movies, not Superhero movies! If Blumhouse being involved with the making of these now, hopefully that's what we'll get.

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Re: Universal Monsters Cinematic Universe

Postby mvp9056 » Mon Jan 28, 2019 11:33 am

Maritonic wrote:
mvp9056 wrote:
Maritonic wrote:So this is their, what, fourth new course for this? Just let it die.

If they do what the article says they're doing, I don't see how this is a bad thing. Like I said this is what they should've been doing from the beginning. If you're that against it happening, you don't have to watch, or even think about it.

And this is really their 2nd attempt at this. Dracula Untold wasn't made with the intent of being a springboard for a shared universe (it retroactively had a post credit scene tacked on late in PP). The Mummy was their only attempt at creating a sprawling shared universe. And after some of the attempts at Godzilla movies in the 90's/early 00's (and some fans' reaction to them), would you say there shouldn't have been more Godzilla films?


This is literally why people are having an issue on this forum. You post a countering opinion, and someone negates what you say instead of having a discussion.

In my opinion, which is like pissing on the Bible around here, Wolf Man, Dracula Untold, and Mummy were all attempts at starting this universe. This is their fourth attempt. Not second. Clearly what they're doing isn't working. I don't think you can ever recapture what made the Universal Monsters work so well back in the era that they came out in.

I wasn't trying to negate your opinion. I even acknowledged that I understood why some people wouldn't like what they're doing. So if you want to have a discussion let's have a discussion. They way you worded your opinion, it sounded like you already have your mind made up.

Um...the Wolfman wasn't really made with the mindset of creating a universe. If it was successful, they would 'possibly' make other remakes (keyword being remakes). Dracula Untold started as a one-off idea (the script for that was years old at that point), they only added the stinger in late PP after it was already announced they were setting up a shared universe. It wasn't made with a universe in mind through the majority of its development.

The Mummy was the only film that was truly being made with plans for a CU centered around it from the start. And it sounds like they're not doing remakes, so they don't have to do the same thing the originals did. If they get good directors and allow them to experiment (whilst keeping them in the same genre of horror/suspense) I don't see anything wrong with that. I don't know about you, but I see the potential in seeing different interpretations of these characters under the Universal brand. Why should these characters be off limits because the originals are classic? If people had that same mindset with Godzilla and Kong, we wouldn't have the modern films we have and are getting.

Plus outside of Wolfman, none of the other films even attempted to retain some of the roots of their originals. The problem with the WM wasn't the Gothic horror tone or setting, it was the writing and plot; the movie was plagued with production issues that were never addressed or ironed out.

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Re: Universal Monsters Cinematic Universe

Postby Maritonic » Mon Jan 28, 2019 11:37 am

Nah, they've said they hoped The Wolf Man would start something. Same with Dracula: Untold. When both bombed, they acted as if this was a whole new plan. The Mummy was the first of the "Dark Universe", yes, but not the first with intentions of building a world.

As Eabaker and I have been saying: this isn't impossible, I just find it very unlikely. I think there is a reason these haven't been working. What made the originals great we are unable to recreate in our current filmmaking climate.
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Re: Universal Monsters Cinematic Universe

Postby mvp9056 » Mon Jan 28, 2019 11:53 am

What made the originals great were their good writing, performances, and effective make-up designs. I don't see how they can't implement those things in new films. Not in the same way mind you, just those basic fundamentals. I don't think there's some special mojo to this the way you're making it seem.

And in the article it says their not thinking of a shared universe anymore, just director-driven films with not set budget or rating requirements. If they want these to work, then that is the right mindset to have. The reason the Wolfman, DU, and Mummy were not successful is because they weren't that good. DU/Mummy were action movies (bad ones at that), and WM had a lot of production troubles that negatively affected the final product.

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Re: Universal Monsters Cinematic Universe

Postby Maritonic » Mon Jan 28, 2019 11:58 am

I don't think "director driven" plays a role for me. Sure, it's great. But consider this; the monsters we love, as icons, are icons because of the actors that portrayed them. Coppola's Dracula and Brennaugh's Frankenstein are both very unique cases, in my opinion. Mostly because they went more with the source material and are both names in the field.

I think the driving power for these old monsters was the thick atmosphere, the stage-acting of now extremely iconic actors, and fantastic makeup effects. The Wolf Man remake had this, and still bombed.

As much as I adore these monsters, and make no mistake I DO adore them, I just think their time in the moonlight is done. I'd like to be proven wrong. But it's just the writing on the wall I'm reading.
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Re: Universal Monsters Cinematic Universe

Postby ROMG4 » Mon Jan 28, 2019 12:14 pm

Maritonic wrote:As much as I adore these monsters, and make no mistake I DO adore them, I just think their time in the moonlight is done. I'd like to be proven wrong. But it's just the writing on the wall I'm reading.

Nothing ever really goes away. Art and Entertainment are cyclical in nature if something was strong enough in the past to leave an impact on people, then it'll come back again. When a form of entertainment's original meaning has simply been forgotten and overused, people look to something different and new to captivate them in the same way the original piece did. Remember when Found Footage was revolutionary and many thought it was the only way Horror could scare anymore? Found Footage has instead simply been relegated to a niche.

To put it in a way that actually makes legible sense. Remember the Santa scene from Frosty The Snowman where he's talking about Christmas Snow? Simply replace Christmas Snow with any form of entertainment and it fits perfectly
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Re: Universal Monsters Cinematic Universe

Postby Maritonic » Mon Jan 28, 2019 12:20 pm

ROMG4 wrote:
Maritonic wrote:As much as I adore these monsters, and make no mistake I DO adore them, I just think their time in the moonlight is done. I'd like to be proven wrong. But it's just the writing on the wall I'm reading.

Nothing ever really goes away. Art and Entertainment are cyclical in nature if something was strong enough in the past to leave an impact on people, then it'll come back again. When a form of entertainment's original meaning has simply been forgotten and overused, people look to something different and new to captivate them in the same way the original piece did. Remember when Found Footage was revolutionary and many thought it was the only way Horror could scare anymore? Found Footage has instead simply been relegated to a niche.

To put it in a way that actually makes legible sense. Remember the Santa scene from Frosty The Snowman where he's talking about Christmas Snow? Simply replace Christmas Snow with any form of entertainment and it fits perfectly


Right but that isn't what I'm saying. What I'm going for is time and time and time again these monsters have been redone and remade and reborn by countless directors and writers. Producers can say all they want to make it sound "new" and make us want to believe "we learned from past mistakes" but I think what they've shown is that these monsters can't be recaptured.

Again, I'm not saying anything is impossible. This movie could drop and I will gladly eat crow. I just know I've seen plenty of Dracula films and hardly any are worth the time of day. Same with Frankenstein and the Mummy.

And to your point about things being cyclical? Valid and fair points. But I don't think right now we're in that cycle of Universal Monsters. I, Frankenstein, Dracula Untold, The Mummy, The Wolf Man, none of them did well at all. I think the cycle could have started when Coppola and Brennaugh did their respective films. If someone jumped in with an Invisible Man, Creature, or Mummy (not like we got) we may have seen it take off. I think right now we're in a very different cycle that needs to run it's course before we see another attempt at this.
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Re: Universal Monsters Cinematic Universe

Postby _JNavs_ » Mon Jan 28, 2019 12:34 pm

I liked Dracula Untold tbh especially when he took out an army by himself, Evans makes a great Dracula. What were the criticisms?
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Re: Universal Monsters Cinematic Universe

Postby Maritonic » Mon Jan 28, 2019 12:36 pm

_JNavs_ wrote:I liked Dracula Untold tbh especially when he took out an army by himself, Evans makes a great Dracula. What were the criticisms?


Missing the whole horror aspect of one of horror's biggest icons, overuse of CGI, I think a lot of people just found it very by-the-numbers-action-movie too. Just kind of "there".
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Re: Universal Monsters Cinematic Universe

Postby ROMG4 » Mon Jan 28, 2019 12:37 pm

I'll say this. A major flaw the Dark Universe had was it was far too aggressive with it's "Connected Universe" story. Which to go off on a tangent is a big reason why Legendary's "Monster-Verse" is so good. Godzilla 2014 was a stand alone movie and Kong kept most of it's connected universe content outside of a few Easter eggs to the end credits and that was there simply to establish Kong in the Monster-Verse

Personally I still can't help but be incredibly disappointed by the Dark Universe's closure. I really enjoyed The Mummy and I'll never really truly get why everyone considers it to be a literal plague on the Planet

And now I'll never get to see Russell Crow in another monster movie :cry:

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Re: Universal Monsters Cinematic Universe

Postby Maritonic » Mon Jan 28, 2019 12:41 pm

ROMG4 wrote:I'll say this. A major flaw the Dark Universe had was it was far too aggressive with it's "Connected Universe" story. Which to go off on a tangent is a big reason why Legendary's "Monster-Verse" is so good. Godzilla 2014 was a stand alone movie and Kong kept most of it's connected universe content outside of a few Easter eggs to the end credits and that was there simply to establish Kong in the Monster-Verse

Personally I still can't help but be incredibly disappointed by the Dark Universe's closure. I really enjoyed The Mummy and I'll never really truly get why everyone considers it to be a literal plague on the Planet

And now I'll never get to see Russell Crow in another monster movie :cry:



I agree. If you do it, focus on individual movies and let the world build itself. This is where the DCEU failed at first, as well. Everyone rushes to copy MCU's success before looking back at what the MCU work in the first place.
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Re: Universal Monsters Cinematic Universe

Postby mvp9056 » Mon Jan 28, 2019 12:44 pm

Once again, those movies didn't work because they were (bad) action movies focused on all the wrong things with these characters. I get what you're saying, and even pointed out that one of the biggest reasons those classics work is because of the performances. But most of the general audience hasn't seen those older films, therefore they don't have that same framework you do. If they see a good performance and grow attached to it, then that is all it is to them. I don't see how other capable actors can't utilize the material as well, or give their own takes on them. I've always felt the best way to continue these characters is through new stories, maybe introducing new characters, or evolving the already existing characters in some way.

If people had the same attitudes with Godzilla, Kong, Batman, or any number of other characters; just doing the same things with them or discontinuing them all together after their first few landmark appearances, we wouldn't have amount/variety of material we have today.

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Re: Universal Monsters Cinematic Universe

Postby ROMG4 » Mon Jan 28, 2019 12:45 pm

Maritonic wrote:
ROMG4 wrote:I'll say this. A major flaw the Dark Universe had was it was far too aggressive with it's "Connected Universe" story. Which to go off on a tangent is a big reason why Legendary's "Monster-Verse" is so good. Godzilla 2014 was a stand alone movie and Kong kept most of it's connected universe content outside of a few Easter eggs to the end credits and that was there simply to establish Kong in the Monster-Verse

Personally I still can't help but be incredibly disappointed by the Dark Universe's closure. I really enjoyed The Mummy and I'll never really truly get why everyone considers it to be a literal plague on the Planet

And now I'll never get to see Russell Crow in another monster movie :cry:



I agree. If you do it, focus on individual movies and let the world build itself. This is where the DCEU failed at first, as well. Everyone rushes to copy MCU's success before looking back at what the MCU work in the first place.

This is in large part due to either impatient executives or impatient executives and film-makers

What they likely do is rather then research what the MCU film-makers did to make their films work they probably watch one Avengers movie or a new MCU film at the time and just think "Ah yes, so Easter eggs and character appearances are what make the films work"

You would honestly think film-making would only improve due to the internet putting all this information and feed-back in easy reach with the only thing needed to access it is a few searches

Instead they've gotten worse
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Re: Universal Monsters Cinematic Universe

Postby Maritonic » Mon Jan 28, 2019 12:48 pm

mvp9056 wrote:Once again, those movies didn't work because they were (bad) action movies focused on all the wrong things with these characters. I get what you're saying, and even pointed out that one of the biggest reasons those classics work is because of the performances. But most of the general audience hasn't seen those older films, therefore they don't have that same framework you do. If they see a good performance and grow attached to it, then that is all it is to them. I don't see how other capable actors can't utilize the material as well, or give their own takes on them. I've always felt the best way to continue these characters is through new stories, maybe introducing new characters, or evolving the already existing characters in some way.

If people had the same attitudes with Godzilla, Kong, Batman, or any number of other characters; just doing the same things with them or discontinuing them all together after their first few landmark appearances, we wouldn't have amount/variety of material we have today.


Most of the general audience hasn't seen those older films? We're talking about some of the most iconic films in all history. I have to completely disagree with you on that.

We keep talking in circles. I get you think other people can do it. I keep saying it's possible I just think it's unlikely because 9.9/10 Dracula movies suck. 9.9/10 Frankenstein movies suck.

And the Godzilla, Kong, and Batman comparisons aren't really comparable; we get a "Dracula" and "Frankenstein" movie every few years, it's not as if they don't stop making them.
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Re: Universal Monsters Cinematic Universe

Postby ROMG4 » Mon Jan 28, 2019 1:07 pm

Maritonic wrote:
mvp9056 wrote:Once again, those movies didn't work because they were (bad) action movies focused on all the wrong things with these characters. I get what you're saying, and even pointed out that one of the biggest reasons those classics work is because of the performances. But most of the general audience hasn't seen those older films, therefore they don't have that same framework you do. If they see a good performance and grow attached to it, then that is all it is to them. I don't see how other capable actors can't utilize the material as well, or give their own takes on them. I've always felt the best way to continue these characters is through new stories, maybe introducing new characters, or evolving the already existing characters in some way.

If people had the same attitudes with Godzilla, Kong, Batman, or any number of other characters; just doing the same things with them or discontinuing them all together after their first few landmark appearances, we wouldn't have amount/variety of material we have today.


Most of the general audience hasn't seen those older films? We're talking about some of the most iconic films in all history. I have to completely disagree with you on that.

We keep talking in circles. I get you think other people can do it. I keep saying it's possible I just think it's unlikely because 9.9/10 Dracula movies suck. 9.9/10 Frankenstein movies suck.

And the Godzilla, Kong, and Batman comparisons aren't really comparable; we get a "Dracula" and "Frankenstein" movie every few years, it's not as if they don't stop making them.

Actually there haven't really been that many new Frankenstein or Dracula movies. Since 2004 there has only been 1 or 2 big screen movies that featured Frankenstein as a primary character. The rest have been indie films and it's not much higher for Dracula either
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Re: Universal Monsters Cinematic Universe

Postby Maritonic » Mon Jan 28, 2019 1:08 pm

ROMG4 wrote:
Maritonic wrote:
mvp9056 wrote:Once again, those movies didn't work because they were (bad) action movies focused on all the wrong things with these characters. I get what you're saying, and even pointed out that one of the biggest reasons those classics work is because of the performances. But most of the general audience hasn't seen those older films, therefore they don't have that same framework you do. If they see a good performance and grow attached to it, then that is all it is to them. I don't see how other capable actors can't utilize the material as well, or give their own takes on them. I've always felt the best way to continue these characters is through new stories, maybe introducing new characters, or evolving the already existing characters in some way.

If people had the same attitudes with Godzilla, Kong, Batman, or any number of other characters; just doing the same things with them or discontinuing them all together after their first few landmark appearances, we wouldn't have amount/variety of material we have today.


Most of the general audience hasn't seen those older films? We're talking about some of the most iconic films in all history. I have to completely disagree with you on that.

We keep talking in circles. I get you think other people can do it. I keep saying it's possible I just think it's unlikely because 9.9/10 Dracula movies suck. 9.9/10 Frankenstein movies suck.

And the Godzilla, Kong, and Batman comparisons aren't really comparable; we get a "Dracula" and "Frankenstein" movie every few years, it's not as if they don't stop making them.

Actually there haven't really been that many new Frankenstein or Dracula movies. Since 2004 there has only been 1 or 2 big screen movies that featured Frankenstein as a primary character. The rest have been indie films and it's not much higher for Dracula either


My point is it's not as if we had one shiit release and said "NO MORE NEW ONES". That isn't even remotely what I'm saying, but that's what's being implied.
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