Wednesday, February 28, 2024

In Retrospect: Dune

It sure doesn't feel like 3 years since I've seen this film.

Don't really know why but it feels longer. Time moves at it's own pace and we see only a fragment of it. But the conclusion will soon be upon us and I knew I needed to get reacquainted. Failed miserably however in my statement to finish the book before part two comes out so that's my bad! I don't feel the opinion has changed much since first viewing, it's practically pornographic in it's design and scope like this is a costumer's/set designer/cinematographer's wet dream from start to end, and I was surprised how well the film's visual grandeur still leaped from my modestly sized televison set! I had a good handful of moments where I was struck by the visuals and just went, holy hell. Grand slam pick for a director on this movie, I mean there is a stark reason why Denis Villeneuve was the correct choice to direct Dune. I don't know if he's going to step in on Dune Messiah or Hrist even if that movie is going to get greenlit for production, so come what may I'm happy we have this movie. Though it's gonna be a looooong sit if they do a double bill or stitch both movies together into one full film, but for us people who are made of sterner stuff and can do extended cuts of Lord Of The Rings I think we can handle it. I paid a lot more attention to how the movie extends information to the audience, a tidbit I just learned about the 80s Dune film is that in theaters audiences had a legit cheat sheet of planets, terminology, and family names to help them out, and while this film doesn't exactly handhold you through in explanations it's easy enough to break it down to basic elements. Atreides good, Harkonnens bad, spice important, Empire is in control, bizzare magicks are at play. This is gonna sound very strange coming from me but I do not read fantasy or science fiction novels regularly, and what I mean by that is I do NOT tread the waters of any ol' fantasy book series or science fiction one off that isn't immediately recognizable. Your Lord Of The Rings, Ender's Game, Star Wars, Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy, Doctor Who, Harry Potter, Do Androids Dream Of Electric Sheep, those are all recognizable franchises. I cannot imagine being in 1965 and reading Dune for the first time, cause there is a lot of imagination and a lot of unique elements that comprise that book which still take inspiration from real world things. It's one in a million to be sure and is always interesting to learn about, in fact I just also learned of a documentary special detailing the creation of Jodorowsky's version of Dune that nevet got off the ground in the 70s so I'm throwing that in as a bonus this week. The acting still stands on solid ground and I'm wondering what all we'll see in the next installment given I've seen only a highly condensed cliffnotes version in the Lynch film. Dune is a bit of an anomaly regardless of medium and I really wish I knew if Part Two is considered an event film, a must see piece of cinema with a lot of buzz and attention swirling around it, I just don't know but I certainly hope it is because the visionary expanse and really and truly this passion project for the director deserves it. I'm not running out my front door to be the first in line for tickets but I'm walking with some optimism in my step and a intrigue to see how it is all potrayed and played out to the end. I love the visuals from the grandest of skies to the smallest detail of a costume, I love the score, I think the acting is good and serviceable to the story, the plot is actually rather easy to follow as long as you don't get bogged down by the jargon, and I'm really really looking forward to the conclusion! I'll bump it up to an 8.5/10 because I do feel I got more out of it this time. I still really want to hear that guitar riff when Paul conquers the worm, and because I'm a contrarian and do whatever I want I'm buying that damn popcorn bucket (I just think it's neat and different, don't make it weird). And I will see you on Friday on the dunes of Arrakis.

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