Dune

Dune ★★★½

Going to put in the preface that I believe about 60-70% of all people are incapable of enjoying Dune for completely fair and understandable reasons. That said I grew up on pulp sci-fi novels and bargain fantasy books. I read Dune way earlier in life than I probably should've to actually understand anything that's cool or important about it. But it left a huge impression on me, just the idea you can make something so vast and big and still be incredibly successful.

I don't think you can make a version of this movie that doesn't exclude most people in the world from enjoying it because Dune is dense and slow and steeped in it's own lore so much that you can't even parse it sometimes despite having read multiple books in the series. But by focusing in on visual language rather than the literary aspect of the book it summons the same things. Vast emptiness, a desolate environment, a pointless power struggle. Even if Frank Herbert was a pretty stupid guy with a lot of regressive ideas, these themes will continue to age pretty well because there will always be a war and the climate will only get worse and worse. If an idiot can pick up on it, it becomes abundantly clear that this is the world we live in down to it's core.

The recurring meme about Jodorowsky's Dune and how wondrous it would be and how absurd and bizarre and colorful it would be. I think most people who want this don't really get Dune. We've rotted this world completely apart and the people who do it aren't eccentric aestheticists, they're brutal nobles who dress in grey and slit your throat in the night. Everything green is gone, there's no color left here. Just the sand, and the beating sun and the corrosion.

1 Star and a half off for cutting corners a bit narratively and having a pretty long run time even though it cuts off at the halfway point in a pretty frustrating manner. Surprisingly liked most of the performances in this even if it felt like a lot of characters were ones we didn't get to spend enough time with. If they nail Part 2 this will probably be one of the better sci-fi movie series of the last 40 years.

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