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Dune Movie Review

There has been a heated debate raging throughout the halls of Twitter - yes, which is not real life - about the "right" way to watch Denis Villeneuve's "Dune." The movie, which is distributed by Warner Bros., is a part of the studio's day-and-date deal with HBO Max, where their entire 2021 slate would premiere on the streaming service the day it goes to theaters. This raised a lot of eyebrows and some warranted concern about the future of movie theaters, but when the deal was made life was much more uncertain than it is now (and some days, it still feels pretty uncertain).

Though movie theaters are hallowed grounds, sometimes convenience and peace of mind will have to win out, which is where the HBO Max option comes into play (Warner Bros. has already committed to a theatrical window first for 2022 and streaming thereafter). Objectively speaking, "Dune" is best suited for movie theaters, but where you watch it won't change your ultimate thumbs-up or thumbs-down vote on the movie. It might enhance a movie you leave loving, sure, but at the end of the day, a story has to win above all.

"Dune," based on the novel by Frank Herbert, leaves its story as background noise. The movie is all about the spectacle, and there certainly are moments of awe-inspiring grandeur, but visuals can't be the only thing a movie has to offer, especially over the course of 155 minutes. The original text is beloved by many, and the infamous 1984 film version by David Lynch has amassed a cult following, so there are plenty of "Dune" scholars out there, who can break the story down with ease. As someone taking their first trip through the sandy world of Arrakis, Villeneuve isn't quite persuasive enough to convince me "Dune" has any real sense of dramatic urgency.

Timothée Chalamet stars as Paul Atreides, son of Duke Leto Atreides (Oscar Isaac) and Lady Jessica Atreides (Rebecca Ferguson). They are in charge of overseeing the production and protection of the "spice," which is harvested on Arrakis. But, "Dune" isn't just about the all-important spice. It's about politics and takeovers and about Paul being taken seriously and not looked down upon as some young kid. But, again, none of the plot seems to be important to anyone. Zendaya, Jason Momoa, Josh Brolin, Javier Bardem, Charlotte Rampling and Dave Bautista round out the all-star cast.

Chalamet shot to worldwide fame with "Call Me by Your Name," the 2017 romantic drama, which earned him an Oscar nomination. His performance was staggeringly good, showing a depth seasoned actors should envy. He hasn't stopped working since, appearing in "Beautiful Boy," "The King," and "Little Women," but "Dune" is his first attempt to ascend to a blockbuster movie star. Chalamet is a good actor, who has earned all the comparisons to James Dean or Leonardo DiCaprio, but Paul isn't as interesting of a character as Chalamet has played. Moments of Paul's struggle give Chalamet time to emote, but the character feels like a bit of a blank slate.

Some who love this story will be invested in the characters and their journey, but "Dune" will start and stop at the technical scale for most. In that sense, "Dune" is a major success, using the wide-open space of Arrakis to draw us in and live in the world. It's hard to not find yourself lost in the vistas Villeneuve has created, but the movie's downtime is often a reminder of the lacking story. The movie doesn't quite sink to the level of empty spectacle, but if the narrative had more of a pulse, "Dune" could have been something special.

"Dune" was made with the hope there would be a second (it's not a spoiler to say the movie is open-ended. Villeneuve has made it abundantly clear it hopes to make a second part). If the movie is successful by the various metrics used today to measure success, the story will be continued. If plans for part two fizzle out, then "Dune" was a big, expensive and presumptuous piece of expository filmmaking.

Dune Movie Review By Matthew Passantino

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About Wanni Arachchige Udara Madusanka Perera

Hey, I'm Perera! I will try to give you technology reviews(mobile,gadgets,smart watch & other technology things), Automobiles, News and entertainment for built up your knowledge.
Dune Movie Review Dune Movie Review Reviewed by Wanni Arachchige Udara Madusanka Perera on Saturday, October 23, 2021 Rating: 5


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