“Feature adaptation of Frank Herbert’s science fiction novel, about the son of a noble family entrusted with the protection of the most valuable asset and most vital element in the galaxy.” – IMDB
[Quick housekeeping before we begging: for a deep dive into Dune and Last Night in Soho, please listen to this week’s episode of Valley Girl Podcast!]
In order to not be swayed by outside opinion for this blog, I don’t read any other movie reviews. But that also means that I tend to go into movies without any knowledge of what they’re about. I want to go in totally puuuuure. And yes, I can be just that douchey!
So all I knew about Dune was that it was a sci-fi, which was based on a book, and which was previously made into a widely panned movie. Also that it included some of the most beautiful and talented actors in the world.
With an almost two and a half hour run time, watching Dune was daunting and was starting to seem more and more like a chore that I needed to get done. So I begrudgingly put in on. Well, within the first five minutes, I knew I was going to become obsessed with this series. I began to envision myself as the oldest audience member at a midnight showing. But hey! By the time the final ones come out, I’ll probably be able to use my children as an excuse to go (as long as that humiliation doesn’t scar them for life).
This movie, unlike so many others, is at the forefront of movie making. Let me clarify…
Although Marvel has its gems and sequels can sometimes deliver, it does feel like us audiences sometimes have to wander through deserts of recycled plots in order to get to a few truly original gems. Well, if I have to wait months on end for a movie like Dune to come around, I’m more than happy to because it’s WELL worth the wait.
Alright, so let’s finally get into it. Dune follows Paul, played by Timothée Chalamet, the son of a duke from House Atreides whose family is instructed by the intergalactic empower to take stewardship over the harsh desert planet, Arrakus, and begin production on their spice resources. However, the takeover is not as smooth as expected and Paul’s journey as the hesitant “chosen one” begins.
It’s a tale as old as time, but my god does this movie do it in a fascinating new way. While it has hints and flavors of Star Wars, Game of Thrones, and Marvel, among others, it ultimately delivers in ways that those series do not. Through careful character development, impeccable casting and acting, an artful and delicate introduction into the rules of this foreign universe, beautiful cinematography, and a clear vision of the direction in which this story is heading, Dune delivers exactly what you need as a viewer, without conforming to what they think an audience expects. I appreciate being taken on a ride by filmmakers who are clearly fans themselves. They should be driving, not me.
If you couldn’t tell already, I can’t recommend this film any more highly. Beware that the only thing that will disappoint you is that you have to wait a WHOLE TWO YEARS for the next installment. But even then, that’s gives the filmmakers plenty of time to make a stellar second installment and gives us plenty of time to catch up on the novels!
Rating: 10 out 10 Claire Bears*
*Dependent on the rest of the series
If you like this movie, you should also watch: Blade Runner 2019, Mad Max: Fury Road, Interstellar
Streaming: Available in Theaters and on HBO Max
With: Timothee Chalamet, Rebecca Ferguson, Zendaya, Oscar Isaac, Jason Momoa
Directed By: Denis Villeneuve