Dune

1984

Action / Adventure / Sci-Fi

85
Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Rotten 56%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Upright 67%
IMDb Rating 6.6 10 107730

Synopsis


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October 09, 2012 at 02:38 PM

Director

Cast

Alicia Witt as Alia
Sean Young as Chani
Virginia Madsen as Princess Irulan
Kyle MacLachlan as Paul Atreides
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
849.58 MB
1280*720
English
NR
23.976 fps
2hr 17 min
P/S 2 / 12
1.80 GB
1920*1080
English
NR
23.976 fps
2hr 17 min
P/S 9 / 98

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by katbercoo 6 / 10

Such potential!

This could have been a great movie! The beginning and really, all of the footage up until the Baron is introduced, even the poor casting of Piter, is really great. The movie went completely downhill for me with the introduction of the Baron Harkonnen. In the book he is hugely obese and requires the suspensors to hold up his weight as his legs can no longer carry his weight. He is described in the book as: "grossly and immensely fat' with a "basso voice." He is ruthless and cruel, but also extremely intelligent and cunning and talented at manipulating others and exploiting their weaknesses. In this movie, for some unknown reason, he is given these horrific sores and a character called 'the doctor' added to disgustingly pick at and suck out the nastiness, which the Baron then flies up to the holding tank of this and lets the contents of his sores pore over his face. GAH!! WTF?? I didn't know those terms when I saw this movie when it first came out. But wished that I had. I saw absolutely NO reason for what they did to the character of the Baron. It was one of the things that really went a long way toward ruining the film. Things that saved it were some of the scenes that so closely followed the book...like the desert scenes with the worms. I was so excited to see the movie because I had read the book in high school and was so anxious to see it brought to life. Then they added the 'heart plug' nonsense. It is like they thought us so stupid that we couldn't accept the fact that he was a horrible person without giving him sores. I don't know if this is what people have called a homophobic attempt to make him disgusting because he was homosexual, or if it was simply an attempt to make him even more disgusting than weighing 1000 pounds or so would make him, but both his character and Beast Rabban were made so ridiculous, that when they are plotting together and the Baron tells him to squeeze the population of Dune, he says, "yes, Baron" almost like they are villains on a very poorly written episode of the original Batman TV show complete with BooHooWaaahahahaha laughter. Also, the casting of Sting was ridiculous. We got no background on his character at all other than what the Baron wanted for him. None of the scenes that showed him to be a flawed but important adversary for Paul. They are supposed to be approximately the same age. In the book, Paul is 15 at the beginning of the story, 17 by the end and Feyd is approx. the same age. They were supposed to be a mated pair in the Bene Gesserit breeding program and would have been if Jessica had not had a male baby instead of a female as directed. I didn't care for the 'weirding modules' either. Once again another attempt at complicated simplification because the weirding way described in the book is more a form of martial arts and David Lynch didn't want 'Kung Fu' on the sands. Still, that was another thing that I could overlook. However...the ending. Paul making it rain...PLEASE! Especially when I learned that the ending had been filmed as written...with Paul marrying the Princess Irulan (only in name, as Chani was still Paul's mate and became his 'concubine' as Jessica had been his father's true love, but not his wife), the Emperor exiled to his own prison planet, and Paul becoming the new Emperor of the known universe. It sets up the next chapter in the series and is so important. Paul did fulfill the Fremen's prophecy, but he was not a God. He couldn't make it rain. He fulfilled the prophecy, because it had been implanted in the Fremen culture by the Bene Gesserit generations earlier just in case the Kwizatz Haderach (sp) appeared somewhere down the line. The missionaria protectiva as it was called in the book. It was Bene Gesserit practice to create religions to suit their own ends and the Fremen were set up to receive a 'super being.' His ability to see into the future was his power. He was genetically manipulated to be able to do this. All of this being ignored and the ridiculous scene of it raining at the end. I wanted to throw my popcorn at the screen!! All that aside, when I saw the extended version on television the first time it was run, I was stunned by how much better it made the movie. So many things that had been left out, making the movie that much more confusing. The fact that all of these scenes were shot, and then cut tells us that those in charge of cutting the final film weren't interested in telling the best version of the story, but in time constraints. I don't blame Lynch for being absolutely appalled at the final cut of the movie and the betrayal of any vision or collaboration between him and Frank Herbert. Frank Herbert was mostly just satisfied to see his creation brought to life, but was dismayed mostly by the same things that I was...especially the ending. When you consider all of the money spent to make this movie and all of the sets and a fine cast (who did a really good job with what they were given), it is just appalling that the final cut is what it is. So many of the important scenes that were left out, were shot!! That is the thing that is the most distressing. I wish that Lynch would make a directors cut. I would watch a 4 hour version. Happily! I would love to see the correct ending restored. I know that there wasn't an alternate Baron shot, but I could get past that. One other scene always makes me mad. The scene where Paul and Jessica are getting out of the crashed 'thopter' in the desert and Jessica says, completely randomly and having no relationship to anything happening, "A million deaths are not enough for Yueh!" That line actually comes from one of the little poems or short references to one of Irulan's future history books as introductions to each chapter in the book. So to insert that dialogue completely out of any context was another WTF moment! Also, making Jessica so whiny. She was Bene Gesserit and although distraught at the death of the Duke, she holds it together until she and Paul are in the tent after they are relatively 'safe' for a brief time before they meet the Fremen. Then she lets her grief out, but her stumbling after Paul was just infuriating. Her character was so much more complex than they made her. Paul was, too. So much potential...it could have been a great movie! As is it is only mediocre. I still always watch it if I stumble across it and reading that there has been an extended version released on DVD, I will probably buy it and just skip over the scenes with the Baron, as I always do when I watch it. I usually turn if off after the Baron is sucked into the worm as well. Not in the book, but fitting...especially the changed Baron as depicted in the film. .

Reviewed by Robert McElwaine 2 / 10

Despite overall decent performances and glorious production values this is a incomprehensible mess

Based on the first book in renowned sci-fi author; Frank Herbert's sprawling, epic saga; Dune was a project that had been through some considerable development going back as far as 1971. With Arthur P. Jacobs, Alejandro Jodorowsky, and Ridley Scott separately vying to direct with their individual visions of how to bring the classic novel to life, executive producer Dino DeLaurentis eventually settled on hiring avant garde film-maker; David Lynch who had gained critical and commercial notoriety for his 1980 biographical period hit; The Elephant Man to helm the project. With a budget of $40 million (a costly sum for a big budget picture at the time) and fevered anticipation that came with the film, due to it's cult fan base there was a much riding on it's financial success. Lamentably however it was anything but; merely raking in $30.9 million at the world-wide box office after opening to scathing reviews which would later lead Lynch to distance himself from the movie; a cowardly move in my personal estimations given that being not only the director but acting as screenwriter in transferring the epic tale from page to screen. In short, the buck had to irretrievably end with him.

At only 131 minutes in length with it's source material being 412 pages in length and embracing an insurmountable wealth of characters, too numerous to count ; even with it's opening introductory monologue from the entrancingly beautiful Virginia Madsen as Princess Irulan (daughter to the Emperor) laying the basic foundations of the plot; it does little to prevent if from descending in to incomprehensible pap. Many scenes involving much needed exposition, that would have laid out crucial plot details were clearly left discarded on the cutting room floor, and it was left to predominantly superlative cast of actors to bravely struggle to salvage any kind of discernible meaning from it. To their credit they for the most part give it their all; with Kyle MacLachlan admirably conveying the young Atredies heir personal dynamic from wide-eyed, cocky young buck to the self-confident, charismatic religious icon that is Muad'Dib with ease. With slightly varied support from J├╝rgen Prochnow as his noble, sage father with Patrick Stewart, Freddie Jones and Dean Stockwell offering further wise, informative words of counsel as members of the Atredies entourage. With Francesca Annis making a demure, reserved and assured presence as the Lady Jessica, mother and concubine to Paul and Duke Leto they neatly round up the caste of their home world of Caladan.

Starkly contrasted via mainly decent turns from a range of actors that include the late Kenneth McMillan, the versatile Brad Dourif, Paul L. Smith and pop icon; Sting, they portray the insidious ruling member of the House Harkonnen. McMillan is a revoltingly repugnant presence as the corpulent Baron with Dourif a wily if relatively short lived addition as the deceitful and cunning Mentat; Piter defries. Smith is the dim-witted, brutish ( a fitting term seeing as he played Bluto in Robert Altman's cinematic live action version of; Popeye) "Beast"; Glossu Rabban. Finally there Sting who aesthetically fits the role well with his sharply intense feature, slender frame topped with a fiery mane of red hair. Given the overall short screen time and minimal dialogue he had; he pretty much chews the scenery as he hams it up immensely. What you make of the acting depends I suppose on your personal predilections what with it's operatic, declamatory style but it's arguably one the few redeeming features; and there's very little beyond the phenomenal art deco and the spectacular grandeur of the planetary and intergalactic scenery. The editing is periodically ropy; a clear indicator where potentially vital scenes may have been dropped.

It's only Toto and Brian Eno's evocative and spectacular score which resonates a mythological robustness in it's more bombastic moments; and a soothing tranquility in it's quieter moments that remind you that offers anything resembling relief from the tedium. The themes of religious fanaticism and political intrigue and corrupt machinations ultimately feel hollow, without enough meatiness to the narrative to fit the void that is woefully apparent. Not even some of the later scenes on Arrakis which include the then; and I suppose even now are impressively rendered; Giant Worm scenes offer much respite from the disjointed incomprehensibility. And that's including any key scenes with the native Fremen, which offer core exposition of Paul's journey in to manhood as he grows in to the position of religious messiah and warrior leader. Try as they might; co-stars Sean young as his future lover, the dutiful Chani (who is adequate enough) who and Everett McGill who fares better as her honourable and temperate father; the Bremen leader Stilgar can do nothing to elevate proceedings.

A failure of monumental proportions; it has perplexingly gained some recognition given that it still manages to earn a moderately respectable score of 6.6 on IMDB; (god only knows why) Lynch even goes so far as to ignore some of the pertinent lore from the novel where upon he gives what is supposed to be a a rousing finale, but is contextually nonsensical. However with some much relevant information lost; I doubt many audience members with noticed or for that matter cared. And that concisely says it all.

Reviewed by robertmaybeth 9 / 10

Flawed but still very adept telling of a very complicated story (SPOILERS, probably)

"Game of thrones" in space, 12 years before it was ever written. We are told the rough cut ran 4 hours, Lynch wanted it to be at least 3 but the studio ordered it cut so as to allow more screenings in the theaters (a common thing in American cinema). But I have the impression the film would still have come out much the same regardless of the finished length... this film aims high, nearly achieves it yet ultimately can't achieve what the filmmakers set out to do. There's much to admire about this film and so many things about it that are ultimately pointless and frustrating.

I had never read "Dune" so I had no expectations; even so it's clear there must be a lot of the book behind the dialogue and film elements. There's plenty of mythos present for "game of thrones in space" that it appears to be nowadays, and the film makers manage to convey a lot of it in a way that makes you want to know more. But that's the problem with this film adaptation - there's just enough back-story to make it a compelling watch but too little is adequately explained to make it satisfying. We have a classic rivalry with good guys (House Atreides) and bad guys (the emperor, House Harkonnen) along with a small but powerful group that will need to have it's loyalties adjusted (the Fremens) if the conflict (the fight for the vital spice "Melange" that grants its user almost magical powers). The good guys include Baron Atreides (Jurgen Prochnow) and his son Paul, (Kyle Machlachlan, making his film debut)squaring off against the evil (not to mention thoroughly vile) Baron Harkonnen and his trained killer Feyd Rautha (Sting, in a baffling but still convincing choice of casting). The Atreides must travel to the planet Arrakis, the only source of the vital spice in the universe. Little do they know the emperor and the Harkonnens have plotted to let them get settled on the planet then destroy them - particularly Paul, who the emperor has been ordered, (by some squishy squid villain or another that lives in a giant aquarium) to murder. All the elements for a great story are there, and for the most part, the film-makers live up to it. If oyu can ignore the often ponderous, pretentious and illogical dialogue, the voice overs that seem like they were written 5 minutes before the scene was shot, and the muddy continuity, this film delivers in a big way. There haven't been production values this good since "Star Wars", and the sets truly create the impression that we are looking at a totally different universe - and manages to sustain that for the entire film. And that's where they take you and leave you, since the story-telling can't live up to the rest of the film. All the elements of an epic story are in place...but where the film ultimately falls on its face is continuity.

The characters all have clear motives, all are painted in appropriate shades of dark and light, and the film makers push every emotional button to make you root for team Atreides and against the evil Harkonnens. But sometimes the dialogue just doesn't work, and it doesn't help things when some of the characters deliver their lines as if they were reciting Shakespeare instead of having a simple conversation.

In short, I really like this film, have rewatched it more then once, and wish it were better then it is. But the biggest problem with "Dune" is the murky telling of the story, and there are gaps a sand-worm could fit through.. You can't help the nagging idea that somehow, something got lost in translation during production. As it happens, audiences just couldn't relate to this film, which did so poorly at the box office that plans for two sequels were simply dropped (which is unfortunate, since you get the feeling that Lynch might have gotten the story right with just another sequel or two).

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