In our time of hyper-capitalism when blockbuster movies are no longer worried so much about the “How do we pull this off?” and more the “How do we make the audience feel this is worth their time?”, Dune doesn’t bother with too much exposition. It hooks you in and hopes you keep up.
I’ve read the book but I am NOT a nostalgia seeker with this IP. And I’ve waited over a month to write this entry. So yeah, that may affect my opinion.
I’m so over the “Chosen One” thing. Thankfully that’s not the point of this overall story.
The cast is good, does what they’re paid to do. No one stands out except Zendaya who stands out in the wrong way. She looks great but once she opens her mouth, you just hear Gen Z; I did not buy her as a girl who’s spent her whole life in unimaginable heat drinking her own recycled sweat. Stellan Skarsgaard sinks his teeth into the sinister Baron, but he’s used so little it’s a step above a tease.
The movie’s frenetic pacing actually worked for me, everything crammed in made it interesting. The third act drags, and the movie ends like a pilot episode. The world building is done justice — the Sardaukar battle prep scene is the most intriguing 40 seconds in the film.
The movie gets the important stuff right — the scale is beautiful and epic, leaves you wanting more. Villeneuve does what he was hired to do
We’ve come full circle — Lord of the Rings in space (the book upon its release) to Game of Thrones in space (this movie upon its release).
Dune lives up to what it needs to — a well-made, calculated product. It clears the bar and no more. I think I’ll like this first installment more when the second one comes out. Together they might make something just short of a masterpiece.
Nothing holds up under the impossible weight of cultural legacy and nostalgia, but with the largest budget, best technology and an elite team, Dune comes about as close as you can.