I was pretty excited to have Dune be remade. I really enjoyed the 1984 version of Dune and I loved the books when I was 16. As always there are some worries about how the text will be interpreted based on ‘modern’ thinking. I started to watch it and thought “This has the spaceships of Arrival and the Cinematography of Bladerunner” – only to look and realise they were all directed by the same person, Denis Villeneuve.
Now not only has Denis Villeneuve created Dune, Arrival and Bladerunner 2049 – he also directed Prisoners, which I almost fell asleep in it was so boring.
Before I get any further though I need to say this. Dune Bagpipes.... What the F*ck? To be honest the whole music thing was a bit off-kilter (some pun intended). I absolutely hated the tribal music - whoever came up with that should be sent to Dune and eaten by a worm, But the bagpipes were some of the worst things I've heard coming out of AirPod Pros ever. Really, avoid bagpipes in all future films. Please.
In my view, casting can make or break a film. I'd not like to be in charge of it at all. You can pick newcomers, but then maybe they don't really sell the movie, or you can try the flavour of the month in this case a sickly sweet bland vanilla ice cream by the name of Zendaya.
Josh Brolin as Gurney Halleck worked well. He's got presence, can act (useful) and came across as genuine. I loved Josh in the Goonies when I was a kid, and to be fair to him he's done some good things and looked after himself.
Rebecca Ferguson as Lady Jessica Atreides worked well. Moving deftly from femme fatal in Mission impossible to Bene Gesserit Sister. Okay I get that. Bought it. Some of the scenes were a bit too self servingly dark though.
I'm still a bit torn on Timothée Chalamet as Paul Atreides. I don't think having seen him in "Lady Bird" helped or "Don't Look Up". He didn't really exhibit anything, to be honest, other than a petulant child. I can't remember how old Paul is in the book, but Kyle MacLachlan was better. Sorry I had to say it. I was also going to write something rude about this particular face Timothée Chalamet is pulling, but thought better of it.
Where the hell was the Emperor's daughter?
The guild navigators were utterly boring. And where the hell was the Emperor's daughter?! I think that's what got my teenage self interested. That and the original dramatic music (which I even bought on CD).
I wasn't a fan of Jason Momoa in Game of Thrones. I wasn't a fan of him in Dune either. Basically, I am not a fan.
A better one of Rebecca Ferguson as Lady Jessica Atreides. Though looking through a few examples her principal role seems to be to look concerned or nervous.
Zendaya as Chani didn't work for me either. Far too trendy and 'in the now' to be bothered with this casting.
Whoever this person is. She was rubbish.
Here's Dave Bautista as Glossu Rabban Harkonnen. I've lightened this one up as I'm getting bored of Denis Villeneuve's dark moody shots. Now I did not like Dave Bautista in GotG at all. Nor in the weird, rubbish zombie film in Las Vegas. But he shines here and is a really good Glossu Rabban Harkonnen. A bit like when I saw Chris Hemsworth in Thor and hated him, but he was perfect in Extraction, Rush and the unofficial voice over for Forza. Some people are just made for roles. Others are cast in the wrong ones and don't quite fit.