January 20, 2015
Possibly misunderstood, definitely underrated. David Lynch's Dune successfully brings Frank Herbert's novel to life.
June 28, 2013
With the right cut, this could have been a terrific work.
December 5, 2014
Saw this on 5/12/14
Dune is a sci-fi film with dazzling visual effects and a strange execution. Dune flopped only because director David Linch shamelessly abandoned the project upon it's release. This is a misunderstood film, it's visual effects are extremely strange and they never seemed to have influenced anyone, but still the set pieces can't be ignored. If Star Wars and Star Trek are good films, then so is Dune. It's only mishap is it's blotted length and a rather poor execution from David Linch. One thing to hate about it is the reflections of nearly all the characters in the movie, it is good in a book, but to show every character's thought in a movie isn't cinematic and that may be why it never inspired anyone. It's cast is stellar and Kyle MacLachlan is a good lead here. It's story is sound and it's thematic elements are better than a lot of the other odd-ball movies.
December 1, 2014
Interesting interpretation of the classic, complex novel. Lynch really goes over-the-top with his material. And it may not help that the movie will be confusing to those not familiar with the book. However, the visual extravaganza (and lack thereof, with its grossness) and faithfulness to the book's basic story makes this an admirable attempt, considering the difficulties of adapting the novel, especially for the timeframe it was made in.
November 8, 2014
It's still a train wreck, but not without some merit. It does contain some interesting visuals.
November 11, 2014
Dunes a mess but every one knows that all ready what works are the lynchian themes that will show up in later works the almost deadpan acting mixed with the over the top,you could say as he delved into the more surreal his movies make more sense,Sting looks like a fucken dork throughout.
November 5, 2014
In my days as a film enthusiast, I've seen all kinds of films. The memories I have of "Dune" will live on for a long time because it is not only bad, it's LEGENDARY in its whopping 137 minutes of awfulness. I guess I should preface by the fact that I have not read any of the books, so I'm sure some people out there are able to make sense out of all this, but that's because this is a film that requires you to do homework in order to enjoy it. I don't know about you, but I don't consider movies work, I consider them entertainment. As such, the plot is a near incoherent mess filled with bizarre names, but I will do my best to describe to you what happens in this film. It's set in the far future, where the known universe is ruled by an evil emperor. The most important substance in the entire universe is "Spice". Spice is not actually something you put on your food, it's a substance extracted from the planet Arrakis (dubbed "Dune") necessary to instantaneous space travel, is a key ingredient in expanding your mind and mental capacity and can extend your life indefinitely. Duke Leto Atreides (Jurgen Prochnow) is secretly amassing an army and the Emperor suspects that this will threaten the production of Spice. He comes up with a plan to pit the house of Atreides and Harkonnens against each other so that Atreides will be annihilated. What the Emperor doesn't realize is that Leto Atreides has a secret son. Paul Atreides (Kyle MacLachlan) was conceived by a member of the Bene Gesserit sisterhood (I had to look that one up), a group of female mystics who are awaiting the birth of a prophesized chosen one called the Kwisatz Haderach. It's bad that she gave birth to a son because Duke Atreides was supposed to have a daughter in order to marry her to another one of the big space families and forge a political alliance. Evil blob-like aliens want Paul dead. About an hour into the movie, the plot kicks in and the Harkonnens attack the members of Atreides, who are on Dune, supervising the production of Spice. Things don't go very well for house Atreides, but Paul Atreides, along with Leto's concubine Lady Jessica (Francesca Annis) manage to escape. After encountering the Fremen, the population of Dune who is forced to harvest the spice but is planning a rebellion against the Harkonnens and the Emperor, Paul is poised to become their super special awesome leader known as the Muad'Dib and stand up against the bad guys. There are also gigantic creatures called sandwurms, who are like the graboids from "Tremors" but about 300 times longer that might cause a problem for our hero. Also, young love, betrayal, spiritual enlightenment after the usage of Spice and more!
What's frustrating about the movie is that once it's all done, the story really isn't that complicated, but when the movie is playing out there is no way you can understand what is going on. You're struggling to understand the dozens of weird terms the movie throws at you and it's impossible unless you're already familiar with the material (I'm guessing). It's like the movie goes out of its way to make itself incomprehensible. Take the planet the bulk of the film is set on for example. Dune is a word that's memorable and easy to understand, but throughout the film the characters almost never refer to the planet as Dune, but as the proper name of Arrakis instead. That might sound like nitpicking, but when you have to remember the dozens of weirdo names like "Feyd-Rautha", "Caladan", "Atreides", "Harkonnen", "Padishah Emperor Shaddam IV", "Muad'Dib", "Sardaukar", "Chaaksa", "Glossu Rabban", "Gom Jabbar" it becomes really difficult. Even more difficult is the fact that these names are just tossed around casually as if the audience knew what the characters were talking about already. The super special awesome leader of the rebels couldn't just be "The Chosen one", he has to be the "Muad'Dib". "Dune" really makes you appreciate "Star Wars" a lot watching because not only did that series have names that were easy to understand and remember like say... "Luke Skywalker", "Death Star" or "Lightsaber" but it also had a character that was a fish out of water, a regular guy whom the other characters had to explain things to while the audience eavesdropped. This movie feels like the third or fourth chapter in a long series because they barely explain anything. Oh, my mistake. They try to explain the plot to the poor audience, but they fail spectacularly. The beginning of the film features not one, but two different characters introducing the different planets, characters and set of the movie, one after the other! It really doesn't help because they toss complicated words and within a few minutes you just give up and hope that when the movie plays out, it will make more sense.
Maybe you regard yourself as someone particularly intelligent and think that the crazy concepts and bizarre names won't be a problem. Will you be able to enjoy this film unlike those dummies weren't able to follow? Well no, you won't because this movie is not only confusing, it's boring. The whole movie feels like it's drifting aimlessly, giving us details we honestly don't really care about for about an hour and a half... and then the ridiculous climax begins. The finale of "Dune" is a big epic battle with monsters and spaceships and even then it's totally underwhelming. It involves characters you don't feel invested in at all because they act more like strange aliens than actual human beings and even the big showdown with the main villain isn't satisfying at all. It should have been awesome because the main villain of the movie is a disgusting, red-haired, flying greasy weirdo with terrible bubbling sores on his face. Kenneth McMillan plays Baron Vladimir Harkonnen and to be honest, I didn't piece together what his character's name was until this instant when I looked it up. Our villain is introduced and Instantly you want to see the guy dead. You would want to see anyone who has dialogue that includes "I want you to squeeze and squeeze and squeeze!" dead but I'm sorry to say that you won't get much satisfaction out of his ultimate fate. Even as a movie, it's badly made. The movie repeatedly breaks one of the sacred rules of cinema: Show, don't tell. Psychic characters are often narrating to themselves what is going on in a way that becomes increasingly tedious and the dialogue is extremely clunky. Most of the film is simply official-sounding characters exchanging explanations of what is going on. When 42 minutes into your movie a scene begins with the narrator informing us that "House Atreides took control of Arrakis 63 standard days into the year 10,191. It was known that the Herkonnens, the former rulers of Arrakis would leave many suicide troops behind. Atreides patrols were doubled" or a 100 minutes in it features a training montage, you wonder if maybe the film could have cut down on some of the boring exposition and actually show us some action.
The bottom line is that I'm sure some people have affection for "Dune" but if they do, it's only because of the source material. It's an ugly, boring confusing mess. 5 minutes in, I realized that this was an irredeemable jumble and I was praying that I was wrong. Even the slightly meme-worthy moments of the film just sort of come and go so you can't enjoy the film in an ironic way. It's kind of a pathetic movie really, trying so hard to be this epic story with this fleshed-out world but you just won't care at all. I'll admit that some of the special effects were good, but they are in the service of absolutely nothing. With every newly-introduced idea, the rating of this film just kept getting lower and lower until we're left with my final verdict. The film earns itself a most generous 0,5/5. Even then, I am tempted to lower it more because I absolutely hated it. (On Dvd, June 14, 2014)
November 4, 2014
Something is offbeat and misses the mark here. But there's lots to like, including a great score.
December 1, 2011
My biggest guilty pleasure movie of all time. Let's face it, this film is as dumb as they come. I loved the novel, which I read before going to the movies. I love David Lynch...What happened? Oh, well, I still enjoyed this film...Ugly and beautiful and cheesy effects and warts and all...
September 12, 2014
The movie was... Er... okay I guess. The more recent Sci Fi channel miniseries was far better though. After reading the books, the only really good thing I can say about this movie is... It made me want to read the books.
September 5, 2014
A bogged-down, boring mess of an adaptation, David Lynch's "Dune" will make you achingly long for Alejandro Jodorowsky's unmade version; but there is some style and visual intricacy to spare.
August 28, 2014
A chance viewing has shown Dune has aged remarkably well. Beautifully photographed and directed, this is a unique fantasy masterpiece.
August 18, 2014
An excellent movie. Very moving and Inspiring. Only few epics and classics can compare, like Star Wars
August 27, 2009
In the far future, the known universe is ruled by Padishah Emperor Shaddam Corrino IV (José Ferrer). The most important substance in his galactic empire is the spice melange. The spice has many special properties, such as extending life and expanding consciousness. The most profitable of its properties is its ability to assist the Spacing Guild with folding space. The spice is vital to space travel because it allows safe interstellar travel to any part of the universe instantaneously. Sensing a potential threat to spice production, the Guild sends an emissary to demand an explanation from the Emperor, who confidentially shares his plans to destroy House Atreides. The popularity of Duke Leto Atreides (Jürgen Prochnow) has grown, and he is suspected to be amassing a secret army using sonic weapons called Weirding Modules, making him a threat to the Emperor. Shaddam's plan is to give the Atreides control of the planet Arrakis (also known as Dune), the only source of spice, and to have them ambushed there by their longtime arch-enemies, the Harkonnens. The Navigator commands the Emperor to kill the Duke's son, Paul Atreides (Kyle MacLachlan), a young man who dreams prophetic visions of his purpose. The order draws the attention of the Bene Gesserit sisterhood, as Paul is tied to their centuries-long breeding program which seeks to produce the superhuman Kwisatz Haderach. Paul is tested by the Bene Gesserit Reverend Mother Gaius Helen Mohiam. He passes to Mohiam's satisfaction. Meanwhile, on the industrial world of Giedi Prime, the sadistic Baron Vladimir Harkonnen (Kenneth McMillan) tells his nephews Glossu Rabban (Paul Smith) and Feyd-Rautha (Sting) about his plan to eliminate the Atreides by manipulating someone into betraying the Duke. The Atreides leave Caladan for Arrakis, a barren desert planet populated by gigantic sandworms and the Fremen, a mysterious people who have long held a prophecy that a messiah would come to lead them to freedom. Upon arrival on Arrakis, Leto is informed by one of his right-hand men, Duncan Idaho (Richard Jordan), that the Fremen have been underestimated, as they exist in vast numbers and could prove to be powerful allies. Leto gains the trust of Fremen, but before the Duke can establish an alliance with them, the
Harkonnens launch their attack...
In 1971, film producer Arthur P. Jacobs optioned the film rights to Dune but later died before a film could be developed. The option was then taken over two years later by a French consortium led by Jean-Paul Gibon, with Alejandro Jodorowsky attached to direct. Jodorowsky proceeded to approach, among others, the prog rock groups Pink Floyd and Magma for some of the music, Dan O'Bannon for the visual effects, artists H. R. Giger, Jean Giraud and Chris Foss for set and character design and Salvador Dalí, Orson Welles, Gloria Swanson, Mick Jagger and others for the cast. The project was ultimately abandoned when Jodorowsky was unable to get funding for the film. However, the work that Jodorowsky and his team put into the film had an impact on subsequent science fiction films, most directly the 1979 Alien, written by O'Bannon, which shared much of the same creative team for the visual design as had been assembled for Jodorowsky's film. A 2013 documentary, Jodorowsky's Dune, was made about Jodorowsky's failed attempt at an adaptation. In 1981, the nine-year film rights were set to expire. De Laurentiis re-negotiated the rights from the author, adding to them the rights to the Dune sequels (written and unwritten). After seeing The Elephant Man, producer Raffaella De Laurentiis decided that David Lynch should direct the movie. Around that time Lynch received several other directing offers, including Return of the Jedi. He agreed to direct Dune and write the screenplay even though he had not read the book, known the story, or even been interested in science fiction. Lynch worked on the script for six months with Eric Bergen and Christopher De Vore. The team yielded two drafts of the script before it split over creative differences. Lynch would subsequently work on five more drafts. On March 30, 1983, with the 135-page sixth draft of the script, Dune finally began shooting. It was shot entirely in Mexico. With a budget of over $40 million, Dune required 80 sets built on 16 sound stages and a total crew of 1700. Many of the exterior shots were filmed in the Samalayuca Dune Fields in Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua. Upon completion, the rough cut of Dune without post-production effects ran over four hours long, but Lynch's intended cut of the film (as reflected in the 7th and final draft of the script) was almost three hours long. However, Universal and the film's financiers expected a standard, two-hour cut of the film. To reduce the run time, producers Dino De Laurentiis, his daughter Raffaella, and director Lynch excised numerous scenes, filmed new scenes that simplified or concentrated plot elements, and added voice-over narrations, plus a new introduction by Virginia Madsen. Contrary to popular rumors, Lynch made no other version besides the theatrical cut; no three- to six-hour version ever reached the post-production stage. However, several longer versions have been spliced together. Although Universal has approached Lynch for a possible director's cut of the film, Lynch has declined every offer and prefers not to discuss Dune in interviews. David Lynch has said he considers this film the only real failure of his career. Lynch claims revisiting the film would be too painful an experience to endure. The film was not well received by critics and performed poorly at the American box office. Upon its release, Lynch distanced himself from the project, stating that pressure from both producers and financiers restrained his artistic control and denied him final cut privilege. At least three different versions have been released worldwide. In some cuts, Lynch's name is replaced in the credits with the name Alan Smithee, a pseudonym used by directors who wished not to be associated with a film for which they would normally be credited. Roger Ebert gave Dune 1 star out of 4 and wrote "This movie is a real mess, an incomprehensible, ugly, unstructured, pointless excursion into the murkier realms of one of the most confusing screenplays of all time." Ebert added: "The movie's plot will no doubt mean more to people who've read Herbert than to those who are walking in cold", and later named it "the worst movie of the year." On At the Movies with Gene Siskel and Ebert, Siskel began his review by saying "it's physically ugly, it contains at least a dozen gory gross-out scenes, some of its special effects are cheap-surprisingly cheap because this film cost a reported $40-45 million-and its story is confusing beyond belief. In case I haven't made myself clear, I hated watching this film." The film was later listed as the worst film of 1984 in their "Stinkers of 1984" episode. Other negative reviews focused on the same issues as well as on the length of the film. While most critics were negative towards Dune, critic and science fiction writer Harlan Ellison was of a different opinion at the time. In his 1989 book of film criticism, Harlan Ellison's Watching, he says that the $42 million production failed because critics were denied screenings at the last minute after several re-schedules, a decision by Universal that, according to Ellison, made the film community feel nervous and negative towards Dune before its release. Ellison eventually became one of the film's few positive reviewers. As a result of its poor commercial and critical reception, all initial plans for Dune sequels were canceled. It was reported that David Lynch was working on the screenplay for Dune Messiah and was hired to direct a second and a third Dune film. In retrospect, Lynch acknowledged he should never have directed Dune. "Dune" is a messiah like science fiction movie based on Frank Herbert´s book that could´ve been a lot greater than it is, but despite several flaws there´s still a foundation I do like. There´s glimpses of an epic movie in the likes of the classics from the 60´s. Grande scenes, great costume design (love the Fremen stillsuits, love the Harkonnen empire suits), intriguing environments, great weapons such as the the Weirding Module, great characters (both evil and good) and biblic undertones. I reckon the tone and general design from David Lynch mind is of great shape. What we miss in the theatrical release is s fleshed out story, theme and intricate subplots of Herbert's book and a much steadier pace/rhythm. Lynch simply didn´t manage to take the book and fully adjust it to the screen. The movie has a great ensemble including Francesca Annis. Sting, Brad Dourif, Linda Hunt, Kyle MacLachlan, Virginia Madsen, Jack Nance, Jürgen Prochnow, Paul Smith, Patrick Stewart, Dean Stockwell, Max von Sydow and Sean Young. And that is a strength for this movie. The big minus is of course the poor effects which makes it look like a true b-movie at times, the general messy plot line and the stale theatrical acting in between. How I wish Lynch could´ve made this today with proper CGI and the same ensemble. "Dune" has its moments for sure, but it´s not as great as it should´ve been.
July 24, 2014
It's amazing how many great films are out there already made. With excessive amount of films being produced today, some can fall by the wayside. Hidden jewels that are simply mind-blowing and make you wonder, why in the hell haven't I heard of this movie before.
That's how I feel about the movie Dune. I have heard of its books and even bought one, because one of my favorite sci-fi writers Keven J. Anderson had written it. But I must not have finished reading it. I remember a game coming out about it. And somehow I remembered the gigantic worms.
But if you would have told me this was a sci-fi movie made in 1984 I wouldn't have known. Now I am glad I know, because it turns out to be a fantastic sci-fi movie that I believe is tremendously underrated and many people don't know about it.
The movie came from the book of the same name written by Frank Herbert in 1965. People have claimed that it's the best-selling science fiction book ever made. It must have been a good read, because the movie is simply awesome and well written. There are so many details and distinctions between planets. It makes Star Wars look like the soap opera it was meant to be, instead of a great work of science fiction.
I cannot believe with today's standards of sequels and prequels and whateverthehellquels that this film has not been updated and stripped down into a trilogy of movies. It's right there for the taking. I just love the ingenious details of the movie. I don't want to spoil it for those who have not seen it, so I won't give much away. But it's a story of redemption, destiny, love, and interstellar peace coming together against all odds.
I have read the reviews on here and they say it's a "greatest hits" of the actual book, that it leaves out major characters and plot details. I remember in the extras they talked about having a four hour movie and having to cut it down. However, I have not read the book. And if I did (I will most definitely check it out now) maybe my view of this movie would change as well.
I can honestly say that in nine times out of ten, I prefer the books to the movies simply because of the greater detail. That and the fact that you use your own imagination and creativity to envision the words on the page. The only exception so far is The Lord of the Ring trilogy, because it sticks to the plot very well. I would say that the book and the movie are equal, and perhaps would even lean slightly towards the movie version just because they are so well done.
So, like I said, if I read this book, maybe I would have a different opinion. Maybe this would be one of the first honest to God books that needed to be split into two movies, I don't know. But the way it is now, I'm still in love with it. That must be a testament to just how good the book is going to be. For me, if you have not read the book, this is a must see. And even if you have read the book, a "greatest hits" approach isn't the worst thing in the world.
For what's it worth, this movie is a stand-alone sci-fi thriller without the book. Why do we always have to compare the two? They are two completely different mediums. It would be like comparing a classic song from Michael Jackson to the song sheet it was written on. The notes are not going to give you MJ's classic moonwalk or his classic high pitch squeals.
It's an unfair comparison to make in the first place. That's why I highly recommend this sci-fi sleeper, for its great and intricate plot, to its distinct worlds. If nothing else, it's a study on how to make a great science fiction book or movie.
July 24, 2014
One of the best movies ever. Still waiting for the other 5 books or so to be filmed by someone good aka not the transformers guy. Feudalism in 10000 ad with psionic, blur shields, witches, mutants, and the WORMS!
July 21, 2014
Damn this movie gets a lot of crap for nothing. First of all it's worth noting that Dune is an 800 page book and the movie is 2 and a half hours long. The pacing issues are clear and the second half of the movie suffers because of this. However, I saw this before reading the book and it is the sole thing that convinced me to read it and afterwards I came back and was pleased in how it remained faithful to the basic purpose of the book. Aside from Sting, the acting is excellent. Lynch does an incredible job directing this movie, the opening scene with Princess Irulan explaining the situation into the camera with space surrounding her is my favorite intro of all time. The first half of the movie is excellent. Unfortunately Lynch ran out of money and time by the time he got around to the second half and it falls flat on its face. But even when it's on its face it's still not a bad movie, it's just not very good. Making a Dune movie is a Herculean task and Lynch did it as well as anyone else could have
July 14, 2014
i love the visuals for this film. the pacing and story telling of the film was horrible thought. not sure if it is supposed to be a style. the acting could be better, needs to be more fluid.
July 13, 2014
Sadly, this is David Lynch at the lowest that could ever be possible.