It’s the Booze Talkin’, I’m still excited for the Dark Universe to unfold!

Last Updated on August 5, 2021

Last week when I sat down for THE MUMMY, I hadn’t read the scathing reviews. Walking in I kept an open mind and dare I say I was hoping for a fun couple of hours. And you know what? That is exactly what I got. And while it appears some have left disappointed, I truly enjoyed the ride. There are a number of factors that played into my reaction to the film. It was fun to see Tom Cruise try something new. That plane wreck and the underwater zombie sequence rocked my world. The set up was intriguing and I was quite pleased with how quickly everything went batshit crazy. It also helps that the references to previous Mummy and Universal monster films had me giddy. As a huge fan of this world, I’m still very much excited about what the recently announced Dark Universe has in store.

So now where does that leave us? While THE MUMMY didn’t open stateside with huge numbers, it did manage to ring up a decent box office overseas. After the opening and the reviews, I found many articles and twitter responses speculating that the Dark Universe was over. So the question is, will the reviews and the box office end it? Is it not time for a new look at BRIDE OF FRANKENSTEIN? Or what about THE CREATURE FROM THE BLACK LAGOON? And of course you have the obvious DR. JEKYLL AND MR. HYDE, will we see more of Russell Crowe as the mad doctor? Well frankly, I feel confident that this is far from the end. Dark Universe is here.

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When it comes to the classic monster movies that Universal brought to life, you could say that they have been making somewhat of a shared universe from the beginning. As most of you are probably aware, there are dozens of flicks starring these creatures. If you look back at the history of everything from DRACULA to FRANKENSTEIN, you can find a myriad of sequels, continuations and spin offs. From FRANKENSTEIN MEET THE WOLFMAN to the more comedic ABBOTT AND COSTELLO mashups, there was a ton of money to be made scaring audiences. This was a “shared universe” before that was even a thing. And let’s face it, if a major studio has this kind of history with successful horror, they will always try and figure out a way to make more money off of it.

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And now, with THE MUMMY and the Dark Universe, the plan is to once again bring all of the beasts to life. Whatever the final box office for the Tom Cruise feature ends up with, it is unlikely to put an end to what lies ahead at least for now. For me that’s a good thing. Currently, there is a new CREATURE FROM THE BLACK LAGOON lurking beneath the surface. There is THE INVISIBLE MAN and THE WOLF MAN. Hell, even VAN HELSING gets a flick. The next feature to expect is BRIDE OF FRANKENSTEIN in 2019. According to Alex Kurtzman, we will be seeing a bit more of the BRIDE this time around. According to a recent post from my man Cody Hamman, you can also expect her to be a "tragic, hunted figure…" And yes, I want to see this happen. In fact, I look forward to see where all of this leads.

As far as the Dark Universe is concerned, I had the opportunity to speak to Mr. Kurtzman recently – you can watch the full interview above – and I loved what he had to say. While THE MUMMY had elements of a huge summer action picture quality to it, perhaps we will see very different features for each of the films leading up to the complete universe – and whatever that entails. According to Kurtzman, there is a very exciting pairing for BRIDE OF FRANKENSTEIN in the script from David Koepp. While he didn’t go into details, it was clear that Kurtzman loves these characters. He also stated in the interview that focus on each film would remain mostly on whatever character they are bringing back in the beginning. Don’t expect DRACULA to be palling around with THE WOLF MAN and THE INVISIBLE MAN until they have all been properly introduced.

Maybe it’s the booze talkin’, I still have a ton of faith in the Dark Universe. Yeah, I know, many of you didn’t like THE MUMMY – including our own Eric Walkuski, who was not a fan. For me however, it was enough to get me excited for a whole new world. As a kid I grew up loving the classic characters, I believe they will never go away. If you are worried about the new films destroying the integrity of the classics, that will never happen. Even if the next film is a failure and Dark Universe ultimately doesn’t work, we still have Elsa Lanchester’s brilliant performance, or Boris Karloff terrifying us. In fact, I believe that this reintroduction starting with THE MUMMY will remind young audiences why all the monsters from way back when will forever be a part of our genre. You can’t kill the classics, in fact, I believe that their return will only make them stronger. So bring on Dark Universe!

Source: AITH

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JimmyO is one of’s longest-tenured writers, with him reviewing movies and interviewing celebrities since 2007 as the site’s Los Angeles correspondent.