Saturday, November 8, 2008

Dune (1984, David Lynch)

I remember pretty clearly when Dune came out. I was only about 4 years old. I used to see the action figures and playsets at the local Child World. The film was definitely within my radar but it wasn't until I was about 15 that I finally experienced Dune. And here it is, 12 years later that I am experiencing it again.

Dune is the story of...okay, does anyone really get this movie? When the film was first released in theaters, the audience was given cheat sheets listing many of the terms used in the film (characters, planets, etc.). My dvd also has a cheat sheet, which I'll admit helped out a bit. Anyway, I'll give it a shot. In the far away future (like 8 bizzilion AD or whatever), two opposing families, the Atreides and the Harkonnens, fight to gain control of the almighty spice, found in abundance on the planet Arrakis, aka Dune. Young Paul Atreides is soon acknowledged as the new messiah and targeted by the Harkonnens as their main threat. Can Paul and his allies conquer Dune or will the Harkonnens triumph? Or, will those crazy ass sandworms eat them all for breakfast?

That's my best shot at explaining the plot of this classic sci-fi film. The great thing about Dune is that you don't really need to understand everything that's going on to enjoy the film. Between the detailed set design, futuristic costumes, dazzling special effects and frightening creatures (courtesy of E.T. designer Carlo Rambaldi), the story is almost an afterthought. you can't deny that the wacky story and the world created in Dune is incredible, just a little hard to follow at times. Still, few sci-fi films can rival the originality of Dune.


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