So, he's finally out. And if he got out, you had to go see him. And I did. I must first say that yesterday afternoon / evening (Saturday night) I saw it TWO times. The first in 3D (in German) and the second in 2D, but in English, in another room of the same cinema where they show the films in their original language.
This is because there are girls who need to improve their English, so you have to go there. (here English is mandatory but not counted: the blonde of the two has English, but the foreign language is French. The brunette always has English, but her foreign language is Japanese).
In short: first viewing, a forty-minute break to eat a hamburger and fool around on the internet with the wifi of the cinema, second viewing, leaving the cinema with the employees who wash the floors.
Verdict (mine): in the original language it is much better . I don't know how dubbing will be in Italy, but in the original language it conveys more emotions. So, see it in the original language. It has an edge. I urge you. Come on, villagers.
But let's move on. It's spectacular? The answer is definitely yes, but the next question will be… spectacular in comparison to what?
I have read and reread the whole dune saga several times, and I have also read the prequels written by the son. The first time I read it when I was 13, it had dated Urania and was part of an uncle's collection.
Then I saw the De Laurentis movie. It seemed spectacular to me, Machiavellianism was being sacrificed a little, but for the time the special effects were quite surprising.
Problem: I had read the book. And when you read a book you have a gestalt. And my gestalt was GREAT. The problem is "how great?". Well, more.
From this point of view, I must admit that perhaps my understatement regarding film editions is simply due to this: in my fantasies everything was "immense". And "immense" was a reduction.
So yes: let's say that the new version is slightly more "immense". But MY version, it was MUCH more immense.
After disclosing my "bias", I give some examples.
Reverend Mother well Gesserit Helen Gaius Mohiam. Then. In the book she is one who paralyzes your pranabindu with a sneeze. He turned Baron Harkonnen into an obese, pockmarked toad, when he was an Adonis before, during some kind of rape (it's in the prequel), simply because a gesserit good can grow an arsenal of bacteriological weapons in the womb. But the saga also talks about sexual conditioning techniques. It means that if one of them agrees to fuck you, by comparison the whole world of embodied porn is just a "high school wooden pussy". (the lowest category of wooden pussies). In addition, they were experts in all kinds of excruciating suffering and their punishments were feared throughout the universe.
Consequently, I imagined them (and I still imagine them) as a kind of S&M dominatrix with a cruel, sophisticated and intelligent mind that when they crochet the Higgs boson comes out, scared. Like the female cenobite, but bbona.
In the De Laurentis film I think they got closer, but the sexy part was to be forgotten. On the other hand, Lady Jessica was a decent cunt, so the Bene Gesserit made a good impression on us.
But in short, reading the book is a cross between Lucrezia Borgia, Lilith herself and a cenobite from Hellraiser.
In the abstraction of this film, a girl arrives with her face covered, hinting at nothing of the incredible competence in body, pain, pleasure, suffering and cunning plots that the book is about. Some kind of fortune-teller with a needle and a box. You don't see much more. As I said, the Bene Gesserit I imagined were MUCH more epic. However, even in this case Lady Jessica's topaggine suggests that when they want….
The protagonist. Okay, obviously the girls are crazy about the Chalamet of the situation. It's just Twilight inside Dune. And Twilight is made to overheat teen girls.
But Paul Atreides was a warrior who passed the exam of the greatest swordsman in the Galaxy, and one of the greatest warriors / strategists ever born, and he was deadly and mischievous enough in combat to make Tufir Hawat, human computer and master of assassins. In the book, he arrives on Arrakis and kills a Fremen guy without sweating, in fact he pulls her too long. And the Fremen were tough.
I mean, he's someone who eats paratroopers for breakfast.
Now, anyone who has practiced any fighting art knows that muscles do, and how they do. I myself after 40 years of Judo can tell you that yes, the technique helps you, all of it, but if a German lumberjack has arms like my legs and lifts me up while I breathe to become a dead weight, life will not smiles at you.
What do I mean? That this Paul Atreides is actually a little too skinny . They put us some jokes about this (it's also in the trailer so it's not a spoiler). to make sense of it, but well … come on, there were some muscles. Of course, then one can be as thin as a marathon runner or as a free climber and have 66% of the weight in muscles, but I assure you that against a bigger one it doesn't matter.
So okay, there are stretches because in short, reality is what it is, and the kid has the body he has. And that's okay, but only because they were good at not putting too many, of forcing.
But I thought he was a Brandon Lee type
The desert of Dunes and the Worms. After all, they are the real protagonists of the story. But here I admit that making it like my fantasy would be difficult.
The worms sink into the sand. And they sink into the water (it is done to obtain the water of life). And they reach up to three kilometers in size, with an aspect ratio of 10: 1 (which no director has respected so far). This implies that (if we consider two tons per cubic meter) a monster of that size must weigh AT LEAST ~ 560,000,000 tons (in the case of the largest worm, the one three kilometers long, for three hundred by three hundred) if we imagine that the density of the sand is only one and a half times that of water and the worm has a double density. If it's the sand we know of, it must weigh more than a billion tons in order to sink .
Let's say it is "only" 400x40x40, it is "only" 784,000 metric tons. If we imagine a very fine sand with the density of water, for it to sink well, it must weigh at least one, two million tons. Otherwise it remains "afloat": the sand will harden and that's it.
So it can only sink into the sand if the sand behaves like a fluid. It does? No. Have you ever been to the sea? If you put your arm down or lean on the sand, don't sink. If you did it in a more fluid dust, such as fine flour or powdered sugar, you might sink. But for that weight to sink in this way, the sand needs to be really fluid. And not too heavy. But from the description, it's sand.
The entire planet is covered with it, and there are winds of 800km per hour during storms. Consequently, there must be immense dunes, kilometers high, and when the wind blows, even a light wind, it must be possible to see them move even with the naked eye. And they could also move, at a spannometric calculation, up to 150 km per hour. During one of those harsh storms, however, the dunes must behave almost like ocean water during a storm, but faster.
Otherwise, worm physics won't work. And that's how I imagined Dune. Now, being a director and finding a place with dunes as high as Mont Blanc and also making them move is not easy. So the production is excusable. Okay, Jordan is enough. At the moment.
A three-hundred-meter-high worm must withstand its own weight and friction with the ground. But even with "only" one and a half million tons the effort is not small. The material it is made of is much, much, much more robust than diamond, titanium or widia. But even with little friction, the energy needed to move quickly melts the sand (if it is silicon) that is trampled on. And the skin resists.
So climbing it will be like climbing a very hard rock face. But you are dreaming of planting a picket. I thought these pegs were like very tight grapples, if not suckers. And it has to be very smooth, otherwise if you move over half a million tons the sand gets hot and melts. Philologically, however, Herbert describes a Fremen instrument that has to lift plates to expose sensitive parts. I wonder what he had in mind to indicate "the sensitive parts" of something that weighs from three hundred million tons, up to one billion for the 3km long worm, or even just a million tons for small ones. Sensitive to what?
So I imagined these worms as worms, yes, armored like I don't know what and smooth as mirrors, and when they move they not only emit static electricity discharges: under them the sand melts and becomes lava . And perhaps that was what the worms were "sensitive" to. In the movies, however, they are slightly different. But then again: my mental projection was great, taking into account the 400,000 HP needed (at a minimum) to move that beast (small version), and their thermal and mechanical consequences. To move the worm from 3km to 300m to 300m it takes energies that the sand begins to melt when the worm makes a few decimeters per second.
When I read the book I thought that obviously the flaming inside of the worm had something to do with just the enormous friction it caused inside to move and the enormous energy it needed to do so.
In the cinema it is not like that. Okay, here it depends on the approach.
The plot hasn't changed much, except for aesthetic reasons. That is too much.
"Aesthetic reasons" I intend to make it more palatable to the American public. The jokes about Paul's muscles, but also the temperament of the characters make sense if we think we want to add EPICA to the film. Which Americans like.
The plot completely lacks the parts that show the emperor, at least at the beginning, and they seem to have reduced the number of players. THE Guild is not even named. Looks like Atreides versus Harkonnen. Anything that is political, abstract or complex has been removed because it does not enter the underdeveloped brain of the average American.
Dune's books are, however, more Machiavellian. Indeed, they particularly insist on the Machiavellian and complex aspect of the medieval / feudal politics of the Empire, to the point that to see clearly they use "human computers". There are also some changes to the text for a "political" purpose: a Jihad began in the book, not a "crusade" as they say in the film. Moreover, it would be difficult to let the Fremen be identified too much with Islamic guerrillas waging holy war.
But in the book that "crusade" is called Jihad , and the Fremen are descendants of the "Zensunni" nomads, who suggest something between Sunnis and Zen, a combination that today you can only imagine between China, Pakistan, or ethnic Islamic ethnic groups. Chinese. Or in Afghanistan. But this lineage is greatly mitigated in the film, probably for political reasons.
The characters of Casa Atreides are also strange. In the sense that they are less immersed in the Machiavellian climate of dark plots, in which even plots hide plots, and are impulsive and temperamental in a way that would not have been possible in the original book. In the original book, acting on impulse because of emotions was ALWAYS a deadly mistake. And the Bene Gesserit would have called you "beasts" for much less. But Americans don't understand complexity, they don't understand abstraction, while they understand instinctively punch in the mouth. In the original universe you wouldn't have survived ten seconds with those temperaments, but the American public doesn't pay for heroes who think.
So there is no strategy to think about. No Machiavellianism. Zero politics. Zero perception of adaptation to a harsh ecosystem, only cheap ethnicism. If you can't handle this, you better not watch it . It's Dune for people with an IQ of 65, which is the average American. But it's a good adventure movie.
So if you feel like you are in front of the latest Star Trek series, with a lot of much more badass characters, I agree with you.
Good news and bad news. Ornithoptera are finally ornithopterans. Lynch's were a cross between a dark leather sofa from the 1960s and a Samovar made in East Germany. Something about the new film gets better. At least, they came close to my idea of an "ornithopter".
The shields. Shields are a central part of military technology, because shields are the fault of not using laser weapons or firearms. So the fact that everyone uses daggers is justified by the fact that if you use laser beams on a shield you cause a strong nuclear force apocalypse, while if you shoot it with firearms you get nothing.
Lynch's shields are a disaster: designed to be unusable because they block your view while fighting with the knife. A professional fencer would have turned them off and won only for the benefit of seeing well. In this film, on the other hand, we finally see some shields that it makes sense to use: transparent and silent.
But all this good news couldn't last long. Because Americans don't understand a SMALL weapon. They have the SUV complex. Here I'm?
So they use knives that are 40 cm to half a meter long. I mean machetes. Now, holy shit, we said shields stop fast things and let slow things go through. If you make such a long weapon, the tip is "fast" by definition. If you use shields, the small knife is what you need, unless you put the shield on a Parma ham and want to slice it to make thin slices. But if you are not in Romagna, those shield-long broadswords (as you defined it) do not pass: if you pass a shield with those machetes , a normal Sicilian picciotto with a fucking spring stiletto kills you all in a few minutes, because the peripheral speed of its blade will pass any shield being very small compared to the machete for which the shields seem calibrated.
No, the swords are too big. Impatient. In the book he talks about fucking daggers, not machetes. And there is a physical reason: the description of the shields. With those shields, size does NOT matter.
The rest of the technologies are slightly more credible, because they have been modernized, but it must be said that in the 1980s, before computers and even the internet were born, imagining transmissions, data and human computers should not have been easy. Or we may think that it is too easy for us to imagine them, since we do not imagine them at all, as we see them.
Others and any.
Holy shit, is it possible that you can't make decent Sardaukers? In Lynch's Dune they looked like they were borrowed from the Chernobyl set. In the English television reduction they were a cross between a Vatican guard and a French court page. Now they are cursed workers of a chemical company called to disinfect the house from cockroaches.
Their commander, who must have been a fierce-looking arrogant, looks like a Krefeld traffic cop.
Is it possible that it is so difficult for you to understand that you are talking about the Waffen SS of the fucking emperor of the known universe?
You're talking about people who are dangerous, but ugly dangerous. People who, if they have long hair, are to hide a thread to strangle you. People who have blades hidden under their nails. People growing up in a post-nuclear hell where the demons of Kenshiro Island look like wankers. But I am also the chosen body. Privileged. It means beautiful uniforms. Pride. Honor.
But do you find it so difficult to make them look like something other than a pest control company for salmonella infested kitchens? And then I say, their arrogant, terrifying and bloodthirsty commander, does it take you so long not to make him look like a Krefeld traffic cop? I mean, I, an experienced commander of the Sardaukers, imagine it at least like this:
Badass, right? This is what Herbert hints about the Sardauker commanders, approx. Such types. Pompous uniforms. Chilling looks. Arrogance as if it were raining. Body pride. Let's go to command on the ring road. Not that stuff I've seen in the movies. ALL.
And I imagined the Sardaukers themselves like this:
Well, does it take so long to make a Sardauker that doesn't look like a Chernobyl survivor, a Vatican page, a pest control worker, or a Krefeld traffic cop?
Here, compared to how I imagine them, the Sardauker have not yet been represented decently.
Heresies, blasphemies, blatant violations of the canon?
Um … very few things, and marginal. You can't violate a canon if you take things away . And they've taken so many things away that violating the canon is really hard. Unless you feel you have the whole story as part of the canon.
For example, political Machiavellianism is removed, but for Americans Machiavellianism is called "conspiracy", because they don't understand something like Machiavelli, unless it's the name of a pizza.
The imperial planetologist becomes a woman. Ok. But even in the written series, he was little more than a municipal surveyor who takes bribes to hide illegal houses. Those of the Fremen. It wasn't that it was very important, except to better explain Arrakis's biology. It's true that it helps save Paul and Jessica, but it's not that relevant.
If the intent was to do the SJW and put a woman in it at all costs, I would say it failed: the really powerful women are the Bene Gesserit, and at that point it would have been better to insist more on how powerful they were: because the Bene Gesserit ARE really powerful. In the saga they are fundamental. They survive the empire, everything, and in the end they win. It is not a saga that puts women in the background, DEFINITELY.
The Guild Navigator. Another highlight of Lynch's film. Hate. In the book it is clear that exposure to the spice beyond certain limits integrates man into the ecosystem of Arrakis, whose top is the worm. Not for nothing does the emperor-God cover himself with spice trout until he becomes a man-worm hybrid.
Consequently, the navigator is expected to take on an increasingly worm-like appearance. In Lynch's Dune this happens “quite”, in the modern Dune… I don't know. We also say "ni". Lynch's was more "exegetical", in my opinion. But I imagined them even more worms, so maybe it's my fault. Here I can't say anything about what's there or what's missing. But I found it disappointing. Yet the Guild's immanent power is fundamental to the story. It's not just Harkonnen vs Atreides. But the American is too stupid to understand a game with more than two teams. So they took them off.
Welcome to "Harkonnen against Atreides", which is what remains of Dune after it is reduced to an American big movie.
Various American Pipponi.
The story that we are the atreides and no faith is betrayed etc. is philological. It's not in the book, but… in the prequel it clearly shows that Atreides are admired for this quality, loyalty. Ok. We are about to pass the concept.
The story that great men are called to govern is fine if it is told by a Bene Gesserit, or a Fremen like Stilgar, while told by Duke Leto it is a "meh". Duke Leto (Paul's father) ends up governing because his grandfather gets killed during a bullfight , in a Very Savoy moment, when the Harkonnen genetically modify a bull for him. With his father dead, Leto abandons the amusements and is catapulted onto the ducal throne. It is true that he is doing well, but…. let's say a historian would doubt that he ever uttered that phrase. This is "Meh", American.
The Harkonnen. The description of the baron in Lynch's film is not intentionally horror. It is philological. According to the Prequel (written by Herbert's son) Baron Harkonnen was a very vain and sadistic homosexual. But he was beautiful and admired for it.
When the Bene Gesserit decide to procreate her child, young Helen is sent to "get his sperm". The baron, being homosexual, refuses. Then the women persuade him by threatening to reveal certain spice shortages to the emperor, and he accepts. But instead of having a fuck with a girl who can make you enjoy until you are addicted, (that is, as much as Gianna Michaels and Riley Reid put together: so one who knows how to do it in bed), decides instead to torture her with an electric stick and to rape her while she is pouring her own excrement into a puddle (released by the electric baton). The Bene Gesserit, who as a hobby cultivates a bacteriological arsenal in the womb, obviously uses all the worst it has on him. And it has a lot worse.
At the end of the show the Baron goes quietly because he never promised it would be nice for her , but she leaves thinking she promised not to kill him, but not to leave him unharmed. In short, they respected the contract in their own way.
So the horrendous pustules were all there, and also the inhuman obesity. Villeneuve's film perhaps exaggerates in making it “cool” despite all the ugliness. But he has no pustules, which in the book make him repulsive. He's just obese. The book does not describe the Harkonnen as refined or as attentive to their look so it perplexes me.
The Fremen: they are somewhat cleaned up for American needs, in the sense that they try (unlike Lynch's film) to remove any connection between them and the Arab world. The result is depressing, because Herbert had used the spice as a metaphor for oil, and the Fremen resembled the Arabs.
Final Judgment: Intended to be the LOTR, but the one based on Frank Herbert. Perhaps LOTR was more philological than the book. This is simply done well, as a reduction of the book to an audience that can no longer read anything like Herbert's books without exploding their brains.
If he can keep the pace until the second part, maybe he will redeem Dune's name from Lynch's failure. But he'll do it because they made him so stupid that only the X-Men are missing.
If you have read the book you will turn up your nose, but you will turn it up in front of ANY movie. If you read the book when you were young, and in wild imagination, obviously no movie will ever be up to par.
In general, however, it is worth seeing. But if you look for Herbert, you will find only the mummy. And if you think you'll find Dune there, forget it: it's practically “Atreides vs. Harkonnen”.
Vote from one to ten?
Five and praise.